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2c) Definition of project terminology
Most, a word which in Serbo-Croatian2 language stands for “bridge,” signifies communication and transmission of information cross-culturally. The documentation of transmission of the interpreted site specifics determined by the spatial positioning of the correspondents provided an objective form of analysis of each particular place. Each locational interpretation generated an associative analysis that entailed historical and immediate geo-political confluence of each site. This was manifested through the visual content of the projections, and awareness of their surrounding.
In his Nobel Prize-winning novel, The Bridge over the Drina, Ivo Andric, a Yugoslav novelist and poet, utilised the metaphor of the “bridge” as a paradoxically connecting and dividing edifice between places and as a commentary on the historical events informed by colonisation and its resulting exodus in the areas of former Yugoslavia. (Bjelic 2002, pp.15-16). The signification of “bridge” in this sense becomes transposed to the geo-political and social positioning of former Yugoslavia as a bridge between East and West, between diverse religions, and between multiplicities of racisms. The 1999 bombing of Serbia by the NATO forces resulted in destruction of the bridges in the metropolitan areas. This action became symbolic of the break-down of communication. 3
In my controlled performative actions, I have taken the symbol of the bridge to the gradual collapse of synchronicity. The communication between simultaneous performances collapsed, yet something was still left over that was useful. Relationships between the language and the visual form, between authority and action, between the ephemeral nature of projected material and the materialising process of painting, between subjective associations and objective descriptions developed new meaning.
Throughout the performance Katedrala, the communication process took place in real-time. In this case, the notion of presence was two-fold. Each presence, the actual (my own) and projected (the telephone) were connected by lack. My inability to see where I was going, and how I was materialising the movement directed by the distant voice, was devoid of a sense of orientation. It was a performed sense of self distanced from itself, and in an absurd way guided by the absent voice from the distance. As a result, a dichotomy between here and there, past and present formed. The difference between past and present was actual, geographically compressed in the controlled performative environment.
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2 The term “Serbo-Croatian” used to be applied to the formal language spoken throughout the SFRY. After its violent fragmentation, the languages that were spoken within the republics of Serbia, Croatia, Montenegro and Bosnia and Herzegovina have split into formal terminologies that are currently known as Serbian, Bosnian and Croatian languages. The languages that were spoken in the two remaining former republics of Slovenia and Macedonia that constituted SFRY as well have always been known under the terms of Slovenian and Macedonian language respectively.
3 In terms of defining illustrious aspects of the term “bridge,” there was also a German art movement Die Brücke (The Bridge) that was formed in 1905. Their aim was to establish a bridge between art and life. Throughout the groups evolution, art became not only a sense of liberation that could express individual feelings, but grew more towards the “basic fears and desires of a nation by a sense of impending disaster” (Herbert 1983, p.8) in the years prior to the First World War.
Also, Marina Abramovic made references to two simultaneous retrospective installations displayed at Alicante and Valencia in Spain in 1998 in terms of El Puente (The Bridge). The concept El Puente in her work may refer to in-between spaces experienced through exploration of transitory spaces in relation to the body and memory.
Most [The Bridge]: Inter media performance - an article by Tatjana Seserko (Tatjana Šešerko)