spaces - informal architecture
This gathering of works presents the current array
of undecidedness in Belgrade s pursuit of its new identity. The
city is seen here as a group of actors without a script. After half a
century of Tito's liberal communism, then Milosevic's introverted nationalism,
then open popular revolt and desire to re-join the World, these pieces
show a complex ambition towards a 'dream' of definite positioning of Belgrade
in the face of current North Atlantic associations. The complexity of
its diverse population and history is now looked at as a burden, as a
complication in the process of European integration. UFO Belgrade exposes
an array of personal and collective analysis of the ambitions and desires
for the city to be reinvented. However, this reinvention is not readily
at hand, rather it seems interminably postponed. The results of different
questions raised by these art and architectural works are analogous to
fog: hanging in the air seemingly forever, but visible only under certain
light, often when no one is around. The blur of any possible clear vision,
and here we mean a vision for a clear future of the city, appears simply
as a number of fuzzy, un-coordinated attempts. The beauty of this blowzy
process does not lie in re-reading the past, but in figuring the present,
which again stands in on the urban stage for the desired future which
should have been now.
UFO Belgrade takes this fog of undecidedness of the city further,
uncovering a new kind of beauty which appears freed from all preconceptions
about average urban life, appropriate history and suitable ideology.
Any desire to redefine the city as a whole always raises the unexpected
possibility of encountering its opposite or something askew. It feels
like the difference between a large field where people go with the hope
of seeing a spectacle and the backyard where a UFO could fall unnoticed.
This may happen near an illegally built house at the outskirts of the
city. The smashed, but survived high-tech craft which fell among half-built
brick houses is baffling. If one wants to interact with this 'extra-terrestrial'
condition one has to forget the ethical world and consider an alternative
to those beautiful movies in which UFOs always land in Northern America
. In reality the UFO may very well fall in a favela or in some other self-reliant
chaos of "urban dilapidation." Now dealing with the alien, the
city confronts the question of what to do next: to try to 'sell' the stranger
or to keep its broken shell as the mythic memory of an encounter.
The UFO is not a matter of the enlightenment. Inside the UFO, whether
anything is left or right, progressive or conservative, radical or moderate,
community-oriented or individualist, secular or religious, positioned
against or for the system... is never quite clear. Being inside the fog,
divorced from the outside, there is no distance from which to assemble
a view but rather the fog of activities devoid of classification
becomes the very agent of social activity. Light can cut through darkness
but not through the fog. Here classical western notions of enlightenment
do not appear to work. The fog is a kind of a surplus, very material indeed...where
things and cities can also disappear.
Jovanovic Weiss, Stevan Vukovic, Katherine Carl, Sabine von Fischer
Boric, Jelena Mijanovic with Mikser-Igor Stoimenov, Maja Vidakovic,
Dimitrijevic writer/curator/Museum of Contemporary Arts/Belgrade
ŠKART Dragan Protic & Djordje Balmazovic, artists/Belgrade
Kucina Faculty of Architecture, University of Belgrade
GROUP for Architecture, Srdjan Jovanovic Weiss & Sabine v. Fischer,
Group Ana Džokic, Marc Neelen, Milica Topalovic & Ivan Kucina,
7. November, 19:00
Talks: ufo belgrade with Srdjan Jovanovic
Weiss, Stevan Vukovic, Katherine Carl & Ivan Kucina in conversation
with Berlin critics and artists.