After You by Ivana Ivković represents a continuation of the author’s multimedia research that started a few years ago with her works Lines, rows, columns (56th October Salon, Belgrade City Museum), Babylon the Great (Gallery Eugster II, Belgrade), Amuse Me (Contemporary Art Gallery in Subotica), I Only Want To Love Me (Hošek Contemporary, Berlin), I DID IT FOR YOU (EICON Gallery MuseumsQuartier, MQ 21, Wien), and IN HIM WE TRUST (Bitef Theater), which were conceptually and thematically developed around the different contexts and narratives of the spaces in which they were displayed.
Realized as site-specific interventions involving situations and arrangements in a tableau vivant manner with a larger number of participants/performers, for Ivković, these works were always concerned with the questions of viewers’ experiences, i.e., their emotional and psychological perception of the ambiances and events. The scene/setup was designed primarily through careful selection of visual and spatial elements that contextualize the exhibition place. The intention of the work with the performers – characterized by minimal choreography and improvisation –Is to realize the piece’s chief communicative potential, i.e., make the scene resemble real life, thus allowing the audience to establish a more immediate and provocative connection with it.The project After You hosted by the Salon of the Museum of Contemporary Art in Belgrade is, hence, a step further in Ivković’s current research procedures, which imply collaborations and the inclusion of authors from other artistic disciplines and subcultural groups in the creative process, and opens new perspectives in experimental approaches to exhibition formats, stage-performative practices, media, and genres. Conceived in a form bordering between drama, an exhibition show, and expanded cinema, After You at the very beginning introduces the viewer to an atmosphere of moods and suggested states rather than a space of representationally defined and apparently observable contents. In terms of visual impressions and associations, the environment varies from a conserved movie set, an open theatrical stage, an abandoned TV studio, to a psychedelic video ambience, turning into a zone of thin boundaries and ambivalence of the relationship between a sense of reality and total remoteness. The experience is additionally intensified by the physical and virtual presence of performers/narrators, as they spontaneously spend some days or hours in the space and enact the play (by Jordan Cvetanović), which is based on the project’s original idea – to thematize and problematize social and everyday-life contexts of the 1990s and 2000s in Serbia. For some, this period was marked by dysfunctional upbringing and development; for others, the painful dissolution of the previously implemented system of values and transition into uncertainty. Notably, the end of the 20th and the beginning of the new century and millennium, in the local socio-political and historical circumstances, brought a collective, transgenerational confrontation with the reality that had often appeared as pure fiction or a repeating, absurd, never-ending nightmare. After You is, therefore, a sort of a history lecture from the background, a footnote in a lengthy narrative, an ambiance-metaphor of social and personal experiences from an era of profound changes, crippling crises, ideological confusion, corrupt values, and disorientation in a hypnotizing whirlpool of prejudices, taboos, political flops…After You is a dedication to Belgrade, a tale of its trials through many generations, of its (anti)heroes, the expectation of their leaving , of the unofficial anthems, applauses, and disappointments, of manipulation as a way of life and an instrument of power, of the future memories of us today – who engage in the reality using social networks, of responsibilities, self-censorship, guilty pleasure, of short-lived revolutions, of consequences without self-realization. After You invites/incites everyone to take part and offer their recollections, (dis) agreements, refusals, frustrations, (non) compliances, (non) belonging, individual and joint uncertainties and doubts: is this real, and who is directing this?
Ivana Ivković (1979, Belgrade) graduated in painting and obtained a master’s degree in drawing from the Faculty of Fine Arts in Belgrade. She is currently attending doctoral studies in fine art at the same university. Since 2002, she has held several individual exhibitions in Serbia, Austria, Germany, Lebanon, Italy, Spain, USA, Turkey, Denmark, Canada, and India and participated in several notable group shows in the country and abroad. She was three times the finalist of the Politika award for the most successful exhibition –In 2007, 2010, and 2019. She was the winner of the 2008 KulturKontakt residency in Wien (Austria), the residency of the organization Residency Unlimited from New York (USA) in 2012, Casa dell Arte residency in Bodrum (Turkey) in 2013, the scholarship of the city of Linz (Austria) in 2014, the residency of the Ministry of Culture of Quebec in Montreal, the Beirut Art Residency in Lebanon, as well as in several other programs. Her works are part of the Wiener Stadtische collection of contemporary art, Telenor’s Collection of Serbian Contemporary Art, the collections of the October Salon and Belgrade City Museum, and some significant private collections in New York, Basel, Lisbon, and Turkey.
Curator: Miroslav Karić
Actors: Vladica Čulić, Željko Maksimović, Petar Jovanović, Đorđe Živadinović Grgur, Olja Njaradi
Dramaturgy: Jordan Cvetanović
Director of photography: Ivan Zupanc
Video installation montage: Vladan Obradović
Video installation sound: Nikola Radivojević
Assistant on the project and co-directing of video installation: Jelena Pavlović
Design: Andrej Dolinka
3D visualization: Nemanja Lađić
Due to the specificity of the project, the Salon of the Museum of Contemporary Art in Belgrade will have different working hours in the period between 17/09 and 20/10/2001, and it will be open Wednesday to Sunday from 3 PM to 8 PM.
After You was supported by: Stankovic & Sons Production Company, Cultural Center Studentski grad – Academic Cinema Club, Radio-Television of Serbia, National Theater in Belgrade, Belgrade Cultural Center, Fashion Studio Click, Nenad Kostić, Momčilo Antonijević and Radix, Dragana Radivojević, Marina Marković.