Third edition of the Project Biennial of Contemporary Art will be organized in partnership with Republic of Austria and Republic of Albania.

3rd of Project Biennial of Contemporary Art

D-0 ARK Underground

Konjic, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Curators: Adela Demetja, Margarethe Makovec & Anton Lederer

24 April – 24 July, 2015
Opening: 24 April, 2015, 11 am, in front of the Atomic Shelter

Curatorial Statement:

The venue of the Project Biennial of Contemporary Art, D-0 ARK Underground is an outcome of the Cold War; without nuclear armament and the “balance of terror”, the bunker in Konjic would not exist in this form. Consequently, the initiators of the Project Biennial of Contemporary Art made this exceptional building the starting point of a more long-term examination of the general topic of the Cold War. The first two editions of the Biennial, in 2011 and 2013, dealt first and foremost with the aspects of the Cold War which concerned the bunker as a military facility and command unit for the state of emergency—as a facility for the apocalypse which nobody hoped would ever happen.

The starting point for the artistic contributions to the 3rd Project Biennial of Contemporary Art, D-0 ARK Underground is again the Cold War period (as understood from 1947 to 1989). Yet, the Cold War, as such, and the conflicts it created are no longer the prime focus of attention, rather, the alternative social, political and ecological movements that occurred during this period and have had lasting impacts up to the present day, are taken as a starting point for this edition of the Biennial. With regards to the area being examined, a focus on the European area with a particular emphasis on Central and Southeast Europe is maintained, which has already been established in the outstanding art collection installed in the D-0 ARK Underground bunker to date.

What the third edition also examines is the construction of history; every political system, every ideology, and ultimately every generation, aims to reread and reinterpret historical events, and to reword and/or alter the historical narrative. Totalitarian regimes act more uncompromisingly in this matter—in trying to annihilate what has been written to date, aspiring to wipe out history as it was once conceived—but in democratic systems too, the interpretations of history are subject to change time and again, in the best case by virtue of new insights and unprecedented intellectual conclusions, and in the worst case on the basis of ideologically motivated coloration.

The invited artists in the 3rd Project Biennial of Contemporary Art, D-0 ARK Underground bring in, site-specific or associated works into the context of reading and understanding “Tito’s nuclear shelter”. They are commenting on the formation of critical social discourses and alternative ways of life in the time of the Cold War and/or their effects on present-day contexts. The curatorial concept and the artworks of this edition engage with contemporary questions, which the industrialized capitalist society is facing today, and opens up a virtual space for rethinking the relationships between nature, humankind, culture and technology. The 3rd Project Biennial of Contemporary Art is interested in the dreams and visions of the contemporaries of the Cold War up to the present day, whose lives are based on the conviction that another world is possible.

Participating Artists:

  • Leone Contini (Florence)
  • Dante Buu (Rožaj/Sarajevo),
  • Effi & Amir (Brussels)
  • Helidon Gjergji (Tirana/New York)
  • G.R.A.M. (Graz),
  • Tue Greenfort (Berlin)
  • Wiebke Grösch / Frank Metzger (Frankfurt/Main),
  • Flaka Haliti (Munich)
  • Marlene Hausegger (Vienna)
  • Dritan Hyska (Tirana)
  • Adela Jušić (Sarajevo)
  • Johanna Kirsch (Vienna)
  • Elvedin Klačar (Vienna/Sarajevo)
  • Damian Le Bas (Worthing, Sussex)
  • Delaine Le Bas (Worthing, Sussex)
  • Ralo Mayer (Vienna) & Oliver Gemballa (Hamburg)
  • Anna McCarthy (Munich)
  • Damir Očko (Zagreb)
  • Nikolay Oleynikov (St.Petersburg)
  • Alketa Ramaj (Tirana)
  • Vahida Ramujkić (Belgrade)
  • Selma Selman (Bihać)
  • Mladen Stilinović (Zagreb)
  • Sylvia Winkler / Stephan Köperl (Stuttgart)

 Image: Atomic Shelter in Konjic. Photo via Koncic-travel.com.