WRITINGS - Lana Čmajčanin - visual artist

Sarajevo - Zürich, Unlimited, 2017

The artists, whose works deal with geopolitical (in)visibility, memory and social, mutually conditioned individual and collective trauma, ruthless drawings and erasures of borders, the war and the dystopian future ensuing after the most recent war, thus create a social space in which Sarajevo becomes a shared city. This is the location of the search for the politics of hope, for the sanctuary of friendship and community, for the poetry in the wake of the war, i.e. as phrased by Marx, poetry from the future in which some new social revolution needs to win over its ravaged past. The historiography of such past is still entrapped in institutional systematisations of historical knowledge, and is produced today from the positions of power based on the neoliberal ucturest of post-rtransitional changes. Subjugated knowledge resurfaces as the politics of error, a counter-historical trigger, and calls for the defence of the society which, following the war and the so-called transition, has ended on the global periphery. Accordingly, the exhibited works which commonly address the city of Sarajevo use different strategies to investigate liminal spaces, their boundaries and assigned geopolitical borders, in the confines of which war by all means and war by other means are alternately being led. 

In her video work entitled Geometry of Time, Lana Čmajčanin uses geopolitical factography: the choice of 32 geographical maps which evidence the borders of Bosnia and Herzegovina in the previous 551 years. The maps which succeed and overlap one another, instead of evidencing precise and clear borders, in fact demonstrate their ebb and flow, the inconsistency and instability arising from colonial, imperial, expansionist, migratory, wartime, but also “peace-making” efforts and revisions. The grey areas of separation are revealed through the artistic strategies of opposing the great historical narratives, and they indicate the necessity of our permanent fight against what instrumentalises, controls, shapes or quite clearly oppresses and socially exploits us, leaving behind its visible marks. 

Excerpt from the text by Jelena Petrović, Sarajevo-Zurich: Unlimited exhibition catalogue

Exhibition catalogue: Sarajevo-Zurich: Unlimited 
Published by Folio 
July, 2017 
English and Bosnian language 
ISBN-10: 3852567351
ISBN-13: 978-3852567358
Dimensions: 17.2 x 2 x 23.6 cm

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