area: Media Art, Video Art
nationalityBosnia and Herzegovina
areaMedia Art, Video Art
time periodJanuary 2016 - January 2016
Igor Bošnjak (b. 1981 in Sarajevo, Yugoslavia) lives and works in Trebinje (Bosnia and Herzegovina).
He is mainly working within the fields of film, video, installation and photography.
Currently works as assistant professor at the Academy of Visual Arts in Trebinje. In 2005 he finished the Academy of Visual Arts (BA) in Trebinje, Department of Painting. From 2006 he is a founder and the curator of the international namaTREba project biennial. From 2007 to 2011 he finished (MA) and studied (PhD) Interdisciplinary studies, Theory of Art & Media Department at the University of Arts in Belgrade, Serbia.
His works have been shown at: Kunsthalle, Wien; New Cinema & Contemporary Art, Rencontres Internationales, Gaîté Lyrique & Palais de Tokyo, Paris; Kunsthal Charlottenborg, Copenhagen; Atopia Film & VideoKunst Gallery, Oslo; Agnes B. Foundation, Galerie du Jour, Paris; Moscow Museum of Modern Art, Moscow; CAM Casoria, Contemporary Art Museum, Naples; Kunst Museum, Bonn; Galleria d’ Arte Moderna Palazzo Forti, Verona; Museum of Contemporary Art RS, Banja Luka; Point Ephemere, Paris; Contemporary Music Centre, Dublin; Espacio Center Canarias, Tenerife; Fabbrica del Vapore, Milan; Center of Contemporary Art, Plovdiv; New Cinema & Contemporary Art, Rencontres Internationales, Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin; Budapest Art Fair Mucsarnok, Budapest; Charinthian Museum of Modern Art Klagenfurt; 2nd Project Biennial D-0 ARK Underground, Konjic; Cultural Centre Belgrade; Gallery Studio of Young Artists Association, Budapest; Centar for Cultural Decontamination, Belgrade; Montenegrin Art Gallery Miodrag Dado Đurić, Cetinje; Eastwards Prospectus Gallery, Bucharest; Contemporary Art Gallery Dado, Cetinje; Trieste Contemporanea, Trieste; MMC Kibla, Maribor; MOCAV Museum of Contemporary Art Vojvodina, Novi Sad; Kulturzentrum Gasteig, Munich; Hong Kong Art Hall, Hong Kong & etc.
In 2010 Igor Bošnjak was a finalist of ZVONO Young Visual Artist Award, organised by Sarajevo Center for Contemporary Art; From 2009 to 2011 he was a finalist for B&H Henkel Art Award organised in Zegreb; 2007 was awarded with 1st prize for video art on 4th Salon Clovek Spomenik in Velenje, Slovenia.
Recently, a few months ago I made a big, huge painting of Europe, well not Europe but something similiar. In fact it is a European map, but very strange and awkward. It is a relief map, size about 3,7 x 5 meters, where Europe is represented as an island completely isolated. Later, above that map I shoot a movie. It is film about how Europe nowadays is becoming something else... Film/Video is in a stage of production. That video will show Europe as a self-sufficient form of excistence, as an Eutopia island which will soon become a self-containment region in a psychological way. Something is very disturbing, about how we perceive Europe today. This video is my projection of idea of Europe. By using video as a medium and web oriented digital interactive tools, I want to create and film an interactive map of Europe. I will explore social-media-human relations and influences of economic and refugees crisis on today's Europe or European Union. In a psychogeographical way the Europe map will be represented as a big EUtopia island. In the text below I use a lot of Slavoj Zizek thoughts on Europe nowadays. The 20th century is over. A totalitarian regime is incapable of surviving in the long run. If we want to maintain the image of ourselves we have in the West, then we have to revisit the immense questions relating to the expansion of democratic freedoms and to the process of self-emancipation. It is here where Europe is most threatened. But I am convinced that we need Europe more than ever. Just imagine a world without Europe. You would only have two poles left - the USA, with its brutal neoliberalism, and so-called Asian capitalism, with its authoritarian political structures. You would lose the most valuable part of the European legacy, where democracy and freedom entail a collective action without which equality and fairness would not be possible.
We feel too guilty in Europe - our multicultural tolerance is the effluent of a bad conscience, of a guilt complex that could cause Europe to perish. The greatest threat to Europe is its inertia, its retreat into a culture of apathy and general relativism.
But are the refugees entering Europe not also offering themselves to become a cheap precarious workforce, in many cases at the expense of local workers, who react to this threat by joining anti-immigrant political parties? For most of the refugees, this will be the reality of their dream realized. The refugees are not just escaping from their war-torn homelands; they are also possessed by a certain dream. We can see again and again on our screens. Refugees in southern Italy make it clear that they don’t want to stay there - they mostly want to live in Scandinavian countries. And what about thousands camping around Calais who are not satisfied with France but are ready to risk their lives to enter the United Kingdom? And what about tens of thousands of refugees in Balkan countries who want to reach Germany at least? They declare this dream as their unconditional right, and demand from European authorities not only proper food and medical care but also the transportation to the place of their choice. There is something enigmatically utopian in this impossible demand: as if it is the duty of Europe to realize their dream, a dream which, incidentally, is out of reach to most of Europeans. How many South and East Europeans would also not prefer to live in Norway?
One can observe here the paradox of utopia: precisely when people find themselves in poverty, distress and danger, and one would expect that they would be satisfied by a minimum of safety and well-being, the absolute utopia explodes. The hard lesson for the refugees is that “there is no Norway,” even in Norway. They will have to learn to censor their dreams: Instead of chasing them in reality, they should focus on changing reality. One must thus broaden the perspective: Refugees are the price of global economy. In our global world, commodities circulate freely, but not people: new forms of apartheid are emerging...