Different Beginnings II (Installation)

Installation documentation (solo show at J. Klović Gallery, Rijeka, Croatia)

Nadija Mustapić,
(in collaboration with Andrea Crnković)

video (HD, PAL, color, 16:9, loop), objects (stop-light/altered readymade; road crossing/wood; writing on walls/ink)


Ksenija Orelj: from her text for the exhibition catalog (Different Beginnings II, Klović Gallery, Rijeka, Croatia)
«Most of us are in waiting, for better and better times, meaning, choices, reckoning and schemes, him or her, the green light… We are caught in the «in between» space filled with relations, passages between one, oneself, the other, between this and that. We are in the state of temporariness, in the chasm of time, of obscured views, tethered by opportunities of events. It is uncertain, quite fragile, extremely potential.
Nadija knows it well, from experience of transiting different life and artistic environments, creations and adaptations to changes, which are found in the tissue of Different Beginnings as steady, graphically clean, feminine sensual references. Dynamics of ups and downs within the wider theme of transience and passing of time are opened up for the viewer’s eye and physical experience – the inner mirror of hardly definable psychological spaces filled with knotted emotional states in the expectation of changes. Accentuated motifs of void and absence, the unsaid and the incomplete are emphasized as the productive potential for an artistic, as well as a life plan. They recall the master of the waiting rooms – of intricate and large-scale bargains of expectations, Samuel Beckett. His aesthetics is placed in our time of questionable adventures and fitted poetically and in the choice of media, brought together playfully and flauntingly, with a welcomed, timid, but felt optimism.
a choice, then change, I had to decide – tomorrow, yesterday was too late…

Different Beginnings II is a continuation of a similar collaborative piece by Nadija Mustapić and Andea Crnković, which was a three-channel video installation, shown at the Barrell Gallery of the Home of HDLU, in Zagreb, 2009. In this version for the Gallery Juraj Klović in Rijeka, Nadija presents her own interpretation of the moments in which the course of life experiences huge leaps. Here, the three videos have been merged into one composite structure for a ambient installation projection. They are joined into one pictorial focus and moved into the deep interior of the gallery space, where the video is projected. At the same time, the video leitmotifs have been pulled out of the elastic frame of the media and have grown out of the digital skin into independent physical objects and hand-written text. The sculptural repertoire has been purposely adopted from the typology of road traffic and the system of urban movement regulation, to point the viewer towards the deep interior of the gallery space.
The symbolically defined, polished and «asphalted» contemporaneity is being asked to take a look into its own interior. In the fluid kaleidoscope, which is being continuously reconfigured into abstracted and edited relations, an individual search for feeling of oneself has been instigated, the feeling of a personal destiny and its defining game-rules. Using the theoretical (Lacanian) vocabulary, the question is: what to do with the extimate? Or to put it in simpler words, how to find oneself at simultaneously intimate and exterior paths, in the labyrinth of free decisions and socially defined codes?

…I kept it going, I kept it out…

We are facing a crossroad in the foreground of the gallery space. It is erected in the shape of stairs. It recalls ascending and descending and symbolically references the climb and the fall. Of course, it is possible to bypass it, perhaps for lack of interest or indecisiveness, or maybe for no reason at all. To move on means to stop again, this time in front of a mural of imaginary paths and hand-written codes placed across gallery walls. At the same time, a female voice which is hidden in the deep interior of the gallery, meditatively repeats the words which we find on the walls and is calling us to enter the narrow corridor. To enter, we have to cross a darkened tunnel lit only by a stoplight, signalizing the right of way. Even this external intruder of the gallery space has been carefully chosen to be placed in it. In correlation with the surrounding «inside-outside» motifs, it steers the attention towards the deep interior of the space. As an object to be (just) viewed, it introduces a possibility of misinterpretation, of coincidence or subversion of the expected, visually represented by a human figure who walks, then seems to fall, to stand up again, then walk….

…then a new time happened, not better, not worse…
The effective dichotomy of formal (image-text, 2D-3D, movement-static) and symbolic (public-personal, order-chaos or play, ratio-heart or intuition) aspects has been established through the analogies and overlapping, dissonance and contrasts. While walking through the space the dichotomy develops into an opened structure of voices, a multimedia matrix of interconnected and directed elements, saturated with meaningful potentials. The subjective archive from the deep interior of the gallery is the main source. A four-piece raster of video components intertwines six video sequences merged into a black non-space, the authority of emptiness and potentiality. The sequences are also unified by colorist accents, circular shapes and circular movement of elements, by reciprocal relations of becoming and disappearing, constructing and deconstructing, searching and loosing…
The contents are fictional, symbolic, important. They differ, but all reference the presence of a human figure, the trace of a body and physical repetition. They are performed by a lone female subject. She walks the brick labyrinth on which evaporating words are written out and with which a house-shaped construction is being build as it continuously keeps collapsing. In one moment we notice her jump, as if this action confirms the life totality and her own psychological space.
Did she get a green light? Or was it red?»



– January 2010 – Gallery Juraj Klović, Rijeka, Croatia, “Different beginnings II “, solo show, single channel video installation




Related events:


SOLO EXHIBITION “AN AFTERNOON WITHOUT GRAVITY” February 10th- March 10th, 2012 CECILLE R. HUNT GALLERY Webster University Saint Louis, USA Visual Art Studios 8342 Big Bend Blvd. St. Louis, MO 63119 Gallery Hours: Tuesday – Saturday, 10a – 5p Opening Reception: Friday, February 10, 6-8pm