Old and New Landscapes

Old and New Landscapes_Grubic_Igor_Stills_EastSideStory

As part of “The School of Kyiv” biennial taking place until 1 November in Kyiv, we are happy to invite you to a special evening on 28 October, consisting of the following programme:

Artist talk by Igor Grubić, screening of “East Side Story” (2006-2008) and excerpt of “Monument” (2010-2015),
followed by
Conversation with Petrit Selimi and Vedran Džihić about the “old and new landscapes”.

About the speakers:

Igor Grubić is a distinguished Croatian artist dealing with the war in former Yugoslavia and its aftermath in his works. Grubić is also an artist of Kontakt. The Art Collection of Erste Group and ERSTE Foundation.

Petrit Selimi is currently Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cultural Diplomacy of Republic of Kosovo.

Vedran Džihić is a political scientist and senior researcher at the Austrian Institute for International Affairs, Vienna.

The artist talk will be moderated by Christiane Erharter, curator and project manager ERSTE Foundation, while the conversation, by Filip Radunović, project manager ERSTE Foundation.

Old and New Landscapes
28 October 2015, 7 p.m.
VCRC – Vicual Culture Research Center: 44 Hlybochytska Street, Kyiv, Ukraine

About the films:

„East Side Story“ (2006–2008, 2 channel video projection, color, sound, 14 min.). After Croatia declared its independence in 1991, the Erdut Agreement finally brought an end to the Croatian war which lasted almost four years. There was discrimination against homosexuals in many of the former Eastern Block countries. The first Gay Pride Parades took place in Belgrade and Zagreb in 2001 and 2002. Around 300 activists and official representatives of the government took part. However, there were violent clashes between the parade-goers and organized neo-Nazis and others who were against those taking part and anyone who sympathized with the cause. One half of the screen of East Side Story shows documentary footage of the outbreaks of extreme anger and violence. On the other half of the screen, dance theatre performers can be seen imitating these outbreaks of hatred, with a slight time delay, at the same locations in Zagreb. Although the Croatian state strengthened the legal rights of homosexuals in 2003, there were outbreaks of extreme violence against those taking part in a Gay Parade in Split as recent as 2011.

“Monument” (2010-2015, 50 min.) is a poetic-experimental documentary. Grubić has created an existential, even spiritual resonance to the political issue of monuments. He tried to film portraits of several abstract antifascist monuments in the way that all the cross references to the nature context create poetical, visual metaphors. The film is a visual essay (without voice-over) about the conditions and ‘life’ of monuments, questioning their purpose today. Even if it is not visible on all of them, several of these monuments were bombed or partially destroyed. When Grubić started to work on this movie project he had in mind the fact that during the war in Croatia in the 1990s three-thousand anti-fascists monuments were destroyed. Therefore the first idea was to film a movie with lots of interviews, but later Grubić changed the scenario and decided to let the monuments speak for themselves and tell their own story about their metaphysical life.

Image: Igor Grubić, video still of East Side Story