About the Nada project by Ljubljana- and London-based artist Jasmina Cibic and the book that has been released by Kunstmuseen Krefeld and Kerber Verlag in 2018. The review was originally published in EIKON. International Magazine for Photography and Media Art #103.
The Nada project by Jasmina Cibic is a complex constellation of site-specific interventions, archival documents, films, photographs, and a book. The latter, through structured as a catalogue of the exhibition at Kunstmuseen Krefeld, might as well be seen, for all its visual and conceptual richness, as an artist book. However, this Gesamtkunstwerk has a pre-history. Cibic has been consistently developing a practice in which she explores visual representations of modern nation building and the role of art and visual culture in that process. Several years ago, she began her ongoing artistic research with works such as the film Framing the Space (2012) reflecting on the reconstruction of Villa Bled from a former royal hunting lodge to a protocol residence of the life-long Yugoslav president Josip Broz Tito, according to requirements of ideology and trends at the time.
The book addresses these notions with essays and an interview with the artist, with exhibition views from Mies van den Rohe’s Haus Esters in Krefeld, and with the photographs from the Nada film trilogy showcasing the highly fictionalised and stylised vision of three distinctive architectural structures – the plan for the unrealised Yugoslav pavilion at Expo 1958 in Brussels, the Aarhus City Hall, and Haus Esters in Krefeld – and the crucial socio-political contexts behind their creation. The book format has obvious limitations and can only serve as a starting point for unveiling the complex stories of the love-hate relationship between politics and capital on the one side, and art and artists on the other – a relationship as old as art making itself.
Jasmina Cibic, Nada: Act I (trailer), 2016
Jasmina Cibic, Nada: Act II (trailer), 2017
Jasmina Cibic, Nada: Act III. The Exhibition (trailer), 2017
© Miha Colner, August 2018 / proof reading Ana Cavic