I AM WHAT I AM – 25th Nadezda Petrovic Memorial

18/09 – 01/11/2010 | Gallery Nadežda Petrović, Gallery Risim, Gymnasium in Čačak, A Small Park near by the main bus station, Historical Archive in Čačak

Artists: Riccardo Benassi (IT) • Zorica Čolić (RS) • Tina Gverović (HR) and Siniša Ilić (RS) • Ana Krstić (RS) • Medijska arheologija (RS) • Goran Micevski • Mladen Miljanović (BH) • Awoiska van der Molen (NL) • Ivan Petrović (RS) • Proto Office (RS) • Vahida Ramujkić (RS) and Heath Bunting (GB) • Naomi T. Salmon (IL/DE) • Dubravka Sekulić (RS) • Slavs and Tatars • Boba Mirjana Stojadinović (RS) • Jan de Wulf (BE)
Curatorial team: Dušica Dražić, Maja Ćirić, Miroslav Karić, Una Popović

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INCOMPARABILITIES – CREATION OF SUSPICIOUS STATES, 2010Incomparabilities – Cration of Suspicious States, 2010
Tina Gverović and Siniša Ilić
Courtesy of the artists

Jubilee Twenty-fifth Memorial Nadežda Petrović, on the initiative of its Art Director Miodrag Krkobić, is a colaborative project signed by four curators with different sensibilities but with a joint aim to critically and responsibly examine and rearticulate the existing standards of culture. Creative programming behind the Twenty-fifth Memorial was structured around an aim to create an innovative and perspicuous discourse in response to the waning cultural production of the country. The exhibition functions on several levels: artistic, real-asthetic, communicational, political, scientific and cognisance level. Establishing this conceptual platform offered a model for fierce critical engagement in culture and society, and not just a space for active artistic practice.

Terra di Dio, 2009

From the series “Terra di Dio”, 2009
Awoiska van der Molen
Courtesy of the artist

The title of this year’s exhibition – I Am What I Am – corresponds with life and work of Nadežda Petrović. Petrović’s life choices – torn between opposing ideologies and systems but always dominated by her faith in constant progress, freedom and community – caused us to consider the context of the times we live in, possibillities that we’re given and choices that we all make as individuals and as a society. I Am What I Am in the domain of art stimulates circulation of various levels of language, networking people and cultures, as well as fulfilled existence in relation to given conditions and options here and now. On one hand there is history, institution, name, resources, leader, strategy and discourse, and on the other are independent individuals with different affinities and interests which are not coopted by the system but are defined by their dedication to act. Exhibition of the Twenty-fifth Memorial has made its goal to point at the urgency of dynamic process, of free labour, words and actions.

Garden Houses, 2007

Garden Houses, 2007
Goran Micevski
Courtesy of the artist

The answer to the question how many artists are the participants of this exhibition is complex; the list of exhibitors of the Twenty-fifth Memorial Nadežda Petrović includes visual artists, graphic and fashion designers, architects and scientific researchers. The authors will present works and projects that are realised individually, in pairs or as collectives. Despite their profession, the selected authors have in common the constant rearticulation of context in ther chosen practice, medium or topics. In the format of graffiti, photo-, audio and ambient installations, reinterpreted classic mediums of painting and sculpture, media projects, interventions in public spaces, statistic maps or documents, the artists commented and brought in focus various perspectives of present realities. Some of the themes are: the art system, its increasing spectacularisation and glamourisation; relations margine-center and artistic positioning within; dystopian spaces of corporations; mass media as means of collective anaesthetising or as instrumental in forming collective identities; personal insriptions and mappings of situations, people, events that in some ways relate to all of us, our individuality and separateness, within ceaseless process of redefining. The option of choice that imposed itself as conceptual framework of this selection, addresses and problematizes numeous themes and questions: decisions/desires, opportunities/misses, strength/powerlessness, resistance/resignation, memory/forgetting, value/legacy, traditional/contemporary. Produced works talk about complex realities or challenge its provocations. The subsistence of the exhibition depends on small but numerous territories and zones that remain vocal in defense of an idea of revising the legacy of the world. [Excerpt from the curatorial statement]

SM-Artattacke, 2007

SM-ARTATTACK, 2007
Mladen Miljanović
Courtesy of the artist