aftermath – the exhibition

Tendencies of engaged Post-Yugoslavian Contemporary Photography

31 May – 2 September 2012

Opening: Thursday, 31 May at 8 pm

National Museum of Slovenia

Muzejska ulica 1, Ljubljana

For the first time an extensive group exhibition was put on display in Ljubljana. It gathered in a single place the principal protagonists from the field of engaged contemporary photography active in the territory of the former Yugoslavia following its disintegration (1991–2011).

Domagoj Blažević / Andrej Đerković / Tomaž Gregorič / Astrit Ismaili / Robert Jankuloski / Genc Kadriu / Amer Kapetanović / Srđan Kovačević / Borut Krajnc / Goran Micevski / Duško Miljanić   Bojan Mrđenović / Paula Muhr / Oliver Musovik / Vigan Nimani / Ana Opalić / Lazar Pejović / Darije Petković / Ivan Petrović / Marija Mojca Pungerčar / Vojo Radonjić / Jasenko Rasol / Bojan Salaj / Mirjana Stojadinović  Viktor Šekularac / Dejan Vekić / Sandra Vitaljić / Borko Vukosav / Milena Zarić / Ivan Zupanc / Antonio Živkovič

The Aftermath / Changing Cultural Landscape international project is the first regional research and curatorial platform established in order to identify and articulate principal tendencies within the field of contemporary photography in relation to its immediate environment. With the participation of partner organisations from throughout the former Yugoslavia, the project represents an extensive investigation of the effect of large-scale social shifts on the image of the physical and mental environment, and thereby, also on the expression of a number of artists who work in the field of fine art photography.

For the first time an extensive group exhibition will put on display in Ljubljana. It will gather in a single place the principal protagonists from the field of engaged contemporary photography active in the territory of the former Yugoslavia following its disintegration (1991–2011).

In the presentation form of the exhibition, the extensive interdisciplinary curatorial research is focused on the artistic reflection of the social changes that to such a fatal degree marked the entire territory of the former Yugoslavia. Thus, Aftermath represents a metaphor for the consequences of turbulent events and their mark on the physical environment and on social everyday life. Through their creative efforts, the participating artists address various effects of transition processes that unconditionally and brutally changed the life of the individual, be it the bloody wars in the 1990s and their indirect and direct consequences, radical economic changes that had a significant impact on the general climate, or directly related new social values. In order to efficiently express various critical views on the current (and past) state of mind, the artists, according to their own values, address the quotidian reality and adapt it to their original artistic tendencies.

Due to its temporal span, Aftermath provides an interesting confrontation of artistic reflections and expressions of various generations that either experienced the period before the disintegration of the common state or originate from a completely new social context. A 20-year period is short enough to preserve historical memory; thus, with most artists, the new situation is always somewhat juxtaposed with the memory of the recent past. The main starting point of the exhibited works is therefore the relation between the old and the new, the recording of the gradual changes within an individual place and time and the effect of ideologies on the broader social and physical environment. The conceptually designed visual narratives outgrow the principles of reporting documentaries and, unlike the sensationalism of the mass media, focus on (although topical) events and situations with a fair share of distance. Due to their social sensibility, they tell particular, often extremely marginal stories about the consequences of an all-embracing social transition as a process that fundamentally marked the entire region.

As a part of a broader regional project, the Aftermath. Changing Cultural Landscape group exhibition has its debut in Ljubljana, to be afterwards presented in various forms until the end of 2013 in partner cities. The Ljubljana presentation will be followed by large exhibitions in Zagreb, Belgrade and Pordenone and shorter presentation and discourse events based on lectures and discussions organised in Sarajevo, Cetinje and Prishtina.

The research and curatorial project was initiated by Photon – Centre for Contemporary Photography in collaboration with partner organisations from the territory of the former Yugoslavia – Remont from Belgrade, Film&Film from Pula and Contemporary Croatian Photography from Zagreb – and associated partners – Collegium Artisticum from Sarajevo, Stacion – Center for Contemporary Art from Prishtina and the Montenegrin National Museum from Cetinje.

The principal curatorial and research team is: Miha Colner, Mirjana Dabović, Albert Heta, Saša Janjić, Ana Opalić, Vala Osmani, Zoran Petrovski, Dejan Sluga, Sandra Vitaljić and Branka Vujanović.


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