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THROUGH THE BINOCULARS OF THE GRAPHIC COLLECTIVE - MAPPING HISTORY


Zorica Bajin Đukanović


Zorica Bajin Đukanović is a poet and a photographer who began publishing her writing in 1973, while she was still studying literature. When it comes to photography, she was fortunate enough to be engaged as a reporter for “Rock”, the monthly music edition of “Politika”, covering music events and members of the rock scene between 1983 and 1988. This magazine reflected the cultural climate of the time, and the synergy of different creative forms/expressions that gravitated towards similar spiritual, aesthetic and ethical ideas and ideals; this dedicated artist of a sophisticated sensibility understood these crucial messages and transferred them into the creative field of her works. We could say that the relation between literature and photography in her artistic practice created a vital system in which the question of identity came together with the alternative urban culture which she was a part of. Within her rich but balanced biography there were two exhibitions of photography which stood out, and which Zorica Bajin Đukanović held in the Graphic Collective.

The first exhibition in 1999 had a poetic title “Back to the Noise” and was focused on phantasmagoric stage arrangements of the male body. As Ješa Denegri wrote, it “indulged in the fascination with views rather than the appearances of external events, essentially testifying to internal projections, obsessions, desires and fantasies”.

In times which were seemingly carefree at first, and then later filled with turmoil, the famous rock band “Ekatarina Velika” (EKV, or originally Catherine II) stands out as a vanguard of the cultural scene. Zorica Bajin devotedly followed the band’s career, their artistic mission and individual personalities as a friend, a witness and a photographer. She created authentic documents which represented members of the music scene and the spirit of the time. In a recent interview, she even said: “During the New Wave, it seemed like anything was possible”.


     

     

Opening of the exhibition of Zorica Bajin Đukanović "Memento", The Graphic Collective, 2004


The second exhibition in the Graphic Collective, “Memento”, was organized in 2004. The exhibition was devoted to the memory of EKV, and organized on the ten year anniversary of the death of Milan Mladenović, the band’s frontman and an iconic figure of our urban culture. The series of 35 black-and-white photographs was taken from an up-close, “intruder” perspective, as Petar Popović put it in his text for the catalog. Popović, who was a great connoisseur of music, and especially the rock scene, wrote: “The value of Zorica's works lies in the fact that she managed to use her own unobtrusiveness to get closer to the complex individuals who formed the creative, and closed core of EKV (...) to portray their personalities in moments when they were caught in a cult-like fame which can be ruthless (...) her curiosity didn’t break their fragile aura or diminish their sensitive bonds.” Those Individual and group portraits, created spontaneously on the streets, at concerts, or in the studio were not merely a nostalgic lament but a record of the personal sensibilities of Milan, Maga, Bojan, VD, Firči, Rake, Sube, Žika and those combined creative energies of music gurus who “not only permanently enriched the city in their time, but also kept its bruised face”, (Popović). Among other things, today these exclusive photographs of the EKV community hold artistic, cultural, documentary and historical value.

Translation from Serbian: Dunja Karanović


Catalogue of the exhibition of Zorica Bajin Đukanović "Memento", The Graphic Collective, 2004



                       

   


Zorica Bajin Đukanović (1952. Mostar, BiH), graduated in literature at the Faculty of Philology in Belgrade. She has published 17 books of poetry, prose and children's literature. She has been writing since 1973, publishing in magazines "Zmaj", "Poletarac", "Politika za dece", "Letopis matice srpske", "Stvaranje". Her first book of poetry "Paper Birds" was published in 1989 by "Rad". From 2000 to 2003, she was a member of the Art Council of the "Joy of Europe" festival. She runs creative writing workshops. From 1983 to 1988, she was a photographer for Politika's music monthly "ROCK". She is a member of associations ULUPUDS, UKS and NUNS. She has exhibited in 21 solo and 180 collective exhibitions in the country and abroad and received about 40 awards and recognitions. She creates in the field of artistic, applied and newspaper photography. Realized about 200 covers of vinyl/CD covers and 100 covers of magazines. She lives and works in Belgrade.



 

 

 
 
 
 
   
Graphic Collective Gallery, Dragoslava Jovanovića 11, Belgrade, Weekdays 12 - 20h, Saturdays 12 - 17h, Sundays closed
tel: +381.11.3285.923; tel/fax: +381.11.2627.785