International group exhibition “Observation without an observer”

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Time and venue: Monday, 17 October 2016, 19 hrs., Cifte Amam, Skopje

The international group exhibition “Observation without an observer” is composed of works wherein presence, the human body, the figure, corporeality itself, and their “modifications” appear as both motif and “object” in terms of artistic considerations as well as the artists’ perceptions. The works not only have a subjective significance, but they also express the sociocultural issues/environments that catalyze and give rise to these “topics.”

While the “thematic” orientation was established by the curators, Dejan Budjevac and Mira Gacina, the exhibition itself includes recent works by the following artists: Mirna Arsovska (Macedonia), Velimir Zernovski (Macedonia), Ino Zeljak (Croatia), Verica Kovacevska (Macedonia/Switzerland), Julia Krahn (Germany), Tijana Lukovic (Serbia/Belgium), Marija Calic (Serbia), and Goran Skofic (Croatia).

Although quite disparate in their visual, aesthetic, poetic, and artistic language, this selection of works exhibits certain commonalities: above all, the artistic attitude to the human body/figure as a complex sensory and fluid mechanism interpenetrated by different sensations, perceptions, affections, and opinions, which can never be finally relegated to the past, i.e., they are always present…

These artists create sensory compositions – digital and tactile aesthetics suffused with an “intense realism” that distorts the “surface” between optical or haptic perception.

The artists’ recording and reviewing of certain external things or of their own variant identities generate countless motifs: the exposure of the human body/figure in the arts, man and environment/nature as a subject, the digital identity of physical space, the private and public in transition from one state to the other, the personal and the nostalgic cut off from the past, the constant reproduction of “reality” as a fabulation of the physical experience of things, religious symbols and their contemporary/alternate reading, old travel photos of unknown origin, the urban culture of man and the (transitional) role of the artist, man in the absence of man, consumerism, the high speed and fiercely dependent relationship between modern technology and human alienation, the experience of constant observation by a force of unknown provenance that is constantly stalking us…
Furthermore, these artists, with exceptional creativity, generate, by means of various techniques and media, visual content which subtly voices the quintessential question of consumer mentality, i.e., is man himself a consumer or a block of body/figure/goods that is itself consumed by the strategic marketing of the global economic and information system?

The correlation established between the disclosure of the body, the figure (either of the artist or of imaginary people/situations/stories) and the medium for the activity (video performance, video, photography, installation) results in a topical artistic research and a body of works that establishes a personal aesthetics, and a poetics of personal methods, which in turn maintain specific attitudes towards the topic “body/figure” and its staging in contemporary artistic practice.
The exhibited works “ponder” the times we live in, times in which the “corporeality” of physical and visual forms is transformed into affect-less sights and locations that fade and disappear.

Among other notions, the works assert the position of human corporeality in its total opposition to the banal constructs of society, which are often absurd, illogical, and manipulative…

Dejan Budjevac, Mira Gacina

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