© Ibro Hasanović

What is left?
Status artistic survey: Performance/ Film and Video screening

Künstlerhaus, Ranftlzimmer
18. November 2015, 18 Uhr

What is left?« versammelt die Positionen von Zbyněk Baladrán, Maja Bajević, Nemanja Cvijanović, Ibro Hasanović, Neša Paripović und veranschaulicht Möglichkeiten des Wandels innerhalb kontroversieller Subjektpositionen.

Performance: Lilo Nein / Kuratoren: Gülsen Bal, Walter Seidl

What is left?
Status artistic survey: Performance/ Film and Video screening

Curated by Gülsen Bal & Walter Seidl
In collaboration with the VIENNA ART WEEK
Performance by Lilo Nein

In bringing our attention to the existing choices in the field of real-politics and its existing social polarization, What is left? focuses on counter-hegemonic practices by a logic of affinity that challenges hegemony per se. This engagement emerges with the problematic of the practical questions with political implications connected with rethinking and identifying a specific conjunction of the new outlines to whatever micro scale possible.

In exploring the new ways of thinking, this program raises questions about how this is all manifested within the realm of creative practice and brought into the spaces of art. What is left? brings together a group of artists, such as Zbyněk Baladrán, Maja Bajević, Nemanja Cvijanović, Ibro Hasanović, Neša Paripovićand to reveal several turning points in its wider context onto surface, where a subject open to controversy arisesseveral turning points where a subject open to controversy arises.

Artist information:

Zbyněk Baladrán
Title: 40 000 000, HDV, 2010
Duration: 7 min, 23 sec

Courtesy of Kontakt. The Art Collection of Erste Group and ERSTE Foundation

40,000,000 is a short video essay linked content-wise to the artist's older films Socio-fiction and The Theory of Work. Using similar visual means, the artist contemplates the undercurrents of capitalist society and his personal role in all its self-motion.  A starting point for the work is Jan A. Baťa’s book We're Building a Country for 40 Million, a Fordist version of the future of First-Republic Czechoslovakia. In the video-essay the artist analyses on several levels the way capitalist society currently works. The motives of capitalism’s hidden processes mix with individual desires and the trajectories of human beings, who, despite their singularity and apparent independence, are part of the system they help create. An important line of narrative is also the level of drawing attention to the filmmaking process itself, conceived as instructions for thinking. A contingent space in which thoughts and images mix with personal subjective feelings.

Maja Bajević
Title: Woman at Work
Duration: 11min, 48 sec
Courtesy of Kontakt. The Art Collection of Erste Group and ERSTE Foundation
The video film „Woman at Work“ is the story of a five-day artistic action. The action was carried out during the renewal of the National Gallery of Bosnia and Herzegovina in Sarajevo, as a part of projects called Under Construction, which has used the scaffolding around the exhibition space. It was performed by five refugee women. For five days, each one wove her own pattern on a net that covered or was stretched over the scaffolding. The camera follows them during the day and at night when they work under the lamplight. The women took over the gallery and combined the recent history of Bosnia and Herzegovina with the history held in the gallery itself. With their work they also established a link between the man’s work on the scaffolding and typical women’s handicraft. The handicraft symbolises the revival of the home and conquering of new space in a typical female manner. Maja Bajevic observed that this was something that many women refugees did when they arrived in a completely new environment. An interesting moment in the story occurs when a female observer asks the camera operator what will happen with the handiwork once the action is completed. She is not completely satisfied by the answer that it will probably be cut out of the net, because she believes that these works should be exhibited in a gallery context, as they are handcrafted documents of a certain time, made in a new context. The observer is stopped dead in her tracks only when she is told that these are handcrafted works precisely because they are an integral part of the action and not in their own right.

Nemanja Cvijanović
Title: Plan B: Arab nationalism is no good for Plan A

Nemanja Cvijanovic's work conceptually explores socialist histories and constantly reconsiders the relationship between economics and politics sometimes to the extent of being censored. Past works include 'Pago la luce (Satisfied Light)', 2005, a large marble tomb stone of Josip Broz Tito which also acts as a radiator and 'Here the future begins now', 2004 a series of aluminium trays with symbols of modern life such as a BMW car cut-out of them. Displayed at the Erste Bank in Rijeka, Croatia, 'Here the future begins now' raised questions about loans offered to Croatian residents to help them meet their expectations of capitalist lifestyles. The work was removed after two days by the bank because it was apparently contributing to loss of clients.

Ibro Hasanović
Title: Note on multitude
Duration: 7 min, 43 sec

Farewell that goes from the emotional to the violent, ending in exhaustion. Men, women and children kiss goodbye and try to board on the busses that will take them into uncertain future of migrants.

Neša Paripović
Title: N.P.1977
Duration: 22 min, 13 sec

Courtesy of Kontakt. The Art Collection of Erste Group and ERSTE Foundation

Neša Paripović’s film N.P. 1977 is among those artworks from the 1970s conceptual art scene in Belgrade that have most recently been researched and re-evaluated. In this film, the artist follows—i.e., literally walks—a straight line through the city of Belgrade, cutting through its nature and architecture; this requires that he overcome all kinds of obstacles, such as walls and ramparts, in order to follow his chosen trajectory. Paripović’s work thus stands in line with that of Gordon Matta-Clark, who realized projects such as his exploration of the New York City subway system in 1976. Matta-Clark chose various sites in order to explore the complexity of the underground tunnels of a specific urban area. Moreover, he became known in the 1970s for cutting through facades, buildings, and roofs with chainsaws and other heavy motor-driven devices. Paripović, however, needed no means other than his own body to cut through Belgrade’s outdoor spaces and roofs without touching any underground venues. It is the act of geometrically mapping a certain terrain—an act that, in Paripović’s case, serves to demarcate the cityscape as a locus for concise mental and physical explorations.

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