27 Julij 2011 00:00
The artist’s recognisable visual language constitutes some sort of ‘heritage’ and original evolution of the extremely convincing and recognisable period of Croatian conceptual art of the 1960s and 70s. At the subject level, Cvijanović focuses mainly on current political, economic and social issues, which he seeks to juxtapose with history, ideology, and the art system. His work draws attention to the responsibility of the individual in relation to detecting contemporary social reality, the reality of historic memory and the establishment of value systems. It includes a fair share of criticism and humour, which is very rare in contemporary art, appearing only sporadically since the Fluxus movement in the 1960s.
The show in Škuc Gallery includes only the latest work, entitled Do not fuck with Social Democracy!, which is a visual and sound installation extending throughout the gallery. Like some of his other works, it seems like a metaphor with which he is striving to draw attention to the dangers of the ideological mechanisms lurking in the individual.
The main motif of the exhibition is a white flag, whose symbolic origin dates back almost two thousand years, when it was first waved as a sign of surrender on a battlefront of the Han dynasty. The surrender, the short moment between the transition from one ideology to another, a moment of silence when the individual is completely void of everything and therefore, naturally, is most vulnerable. With Cvijanović’s intervention, the white flag as a symbol of surrender is transformed into a revolutionary and ideologically coloured red. In relation to the viewer, the gallery works as a space of ideology which is impossible to avoid, while the ideology’s deceit is so obvious that it is impossible to exit without any difficulties. It is precisely this point of symbolic transition, the transformation of the emptied white flag into red and back, that is the main message of Cvijanović’s installation and the trap he sets for the viewer.
When it took place: July 27, 2011 – August 28, 2011
Location: Škuc Gallery
Curator: Tevž Logar
Camera, sound, cut: Dominik Mahnič
Interview with the artist: Dominik Mahnič