curators: Basak Senova, Branko Franceschi, and Jonatan Habib Engqvist
artists: Bella Rune, the CUSS Group, Jagoda Buic, Larissa Sansour, Mirko Maric, Momcilo Golub, Ramesch Daha, Renee Petropoulos, Vesna Pavlovic, Yoko Ono, Zlatko Kopljar and 148 works from the previous editions.
venue: Tito’s Atomic Shelter
coordinates: Konjic, 2019 biennial director: Edo Hozić
coordinator in chief: Sandra Miljević Hozić
visual identity and graphic design: Basak Senova
website: http://www.bijenale.ba

Do secret services dream of a museum?

Who controls the past controls the future: who controls the present controls the past.
1984 by George Orwell

The Project Biennial Contemporary Art D-0 ARK Underground was initially programmed to be completed in 5 editions and designed to become an amalgamation of a military and contemporary art museum after completing its cycle. In this respect, the 5th edition is the “end” that is also the “new beginning”. “Do secret services dream of a museum?” underlines this transition that overlaps closures with the openings and transcends function with vision. The project is a unique example of how the contemporary art —whilst in a situation of insufficient financial resources, intermittent professional opportunities, and lack of political or social stability to maintain any of the art institutions in Bosnia and Herzegovina— saved a military museum, thus preserving the archives from the past for the future. Furthermore, it suggests how different fields of knowledge and research can nurture one another other and create a common ground for social growth.

This edition will present works by Bella Rune, the Cuss Group, Jagoda Buic, Larissa Sansour, Mirko Maric, Momcilo Golub, Ramesch Daha, Renee Petropoulos, Vesna Pavlovic, Yoko Ono, and Zlatko Kopljar. Following the pattern of the previous editions, the participating artists demonstrate different artistic methodologies, approaches, disciplines, media and generations. Nevertheless, as a significant intersection point, criticality and research are inherent in all the featured works. One has to take into account that new works will merge and co-exist with the 148 works from the previous editions by addressing new perspectives, meanings, and viewing experiences to recognize the bunker as a single entity.

Yoko Ono (1933, Tokyo) Lives and works in New York.

“Documentary video by Yoko Ono on Imagine Peace Tower”, 2008

The Imagine Peace Tower is a memorial to John Lennon from his widow, Yoko Ono, located on Viðey Island in Kollafjörður Bay near Reykjavík, Iceland. It consists of a tall tower of light, projected from a white stone monument that has the words “Imagine Peace” carved into it in 24 languages. These words, and the name of the tower, are a reference to Lennon’s campaign for peace, and his song “Imagine”. The Tower consists of 15 searchlights with prisms that act as mirrors, reflecting the column of light vertically into the sky from a 10-metre wide wishing well. It often reaches cloud base and indeed can be seen penetrating the cloud cover. On a clear night it appears to reach an altitude of at least 4000 m. Buried underneath the light tower are over 1 million written wishes that Ono gathered over the years in another project, called Wish Trees. Ono plans to have the tower lit every year from 9 October, Lennon’s birthday, through 8 December, the date he was shot.


Ramesch Daha (1971, Tehran) Lives and works in Vienna.

“Unlimited History: 32°N/53°E”, 2009/2012

Ramesch Daha combines aspects of her family history with events of profound historical significance. Her latest research project stems from the Tehran Conference, the first meeting of the Allied leaders in World War II, and pursues the historical links between Iran and the “Big Three”. Crucial to this story is the Trans-Iranian Railway, a project which marked the nation’s first steps into the age of industrialization. Daha also uncovers pivotal facts on the link between Nazi Germany and the railway’s construction. With a research diary approach, Daha compiles complex historical interfaces using original documents, stamps, letters, sketches, and maps excerpted from her research.

The Cuss Group (Formed in Johanesbourg, 2011)

“Fully Automated Luxury Influencer” (3 Episodes), 2017

‘’We live in the age of the influencer. We can hardly scroll through our timelines and feeds without being slyly sold a product from a high-follower individual who’s just like us. While it may seem a mutually beneficial corporate-individual relationship, is influencer culture not just the parasitic infiltration of consumer marketing into all our social relations? Hardly relegated to promoting green juice and diet pills, online personalities can even leverage their presence to mobilize political power—perhaps seen at its most extreme in the rise of Donald Trump. Equal parts humorous and horrifying, Fully Automated Luxury Influencer serves as an instructive warning on the dangers of losing oneself in a world of corporatized online clout.’’ Taken from DIS.ART


Zlatko Kopljar (1962, Zenica) Lives and works in Zagreb.

“K6”, 2000/2019

“My father was killed during the bombing of the city on 23 September 1992 at the location where K6 was performed. I marked the spot with a white rectangle under which I wrote the date of his death as a series of numbers: 23091992. Within ten days, the sign was erased by car tires.” K6 was performed in 2000 on the main road connecting Slavonski Brod and Bosanski Brod, at the border between Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina, as a powerful expression about the (un)importance of the individual’s fate caught between the tectonic faults of social change and wars.


Mirko Marić (1949, Zenica) Lives and works in Graz.

“No one trusts anyone about anything”, 2010/2013

As a living being, man first learned how to breathe. Upon noticing that life is possible only for those who breathe, he began observing (spying on) his surroundings. He understood that he is not alone, and that others, like himself, want to be the first, the fastest, and the strongest. Like breathing, since the dawn of man espionage has been vital to his survival. Because of his fears, he began to manipulate and invent fabrications in order to survive and rise above the others. Fortunately for him, today the intelligent man has allowed intelligent machines to spy on him at every opportunity, at all times.

Larissa Sansour (1973, East Jerusalem) Lives and works in London

“In the Future, They Ate From the Finest Porcelain”, 2015

In the Future They Ate From the Finest Porcelain resides in the cross-section between sci-fi, archaeology and politics. Combining live motion and CGI, the film explores the role of myth for history, fact and national identity. A narrative resistance group makes underground deposits of elaborate porcelain – suggested to belong to an entirely fictional civilization. Their aim is to influence history and support future claims to their vanishing lands. Once unearthed, this tableware will prove the existence of this counterfeit people. By implementing a myth of its own, their work becomes a historical intervention – de facto creating a nation.


Rene Petropoulos (Los Angeles) Lives and works in Los Angeles

“It’s An Old Illness: 3 for 2”, 2017  Video (Voices: Kathrin Burmester, Alec Egan, Elena Rosa)

The conversations from the novels were ordered and sequenced to form a new narrative anchored in philosophical and moral/ethical questions of existence, strategy and consequence. Three speakers alternate in articulating this dialog. Gender and voice are in rotation. The merger of the public and private world as it conditions our decisions and actions is revealed in the mirroring of ‘fiction’ as expressed in ‘actual’ accounts of agents. Disorientation as a strategy to navigate language using listening as an action and contemplation and relaxation (color) as a focus give us space to ‘reconsider’. Reflecting on an analog mode of interaction that initially seemed out of sync with the times, has now come to be the only way to thwart or evade the electronic surveillance of today. We have come full circle.


Vesna Pavlović (1970, Kladovo)  Lives and works in USA.

“Fabrics of Socialism”, 2013/2019

Photographs and installations from Vesna Pavlović’s Fabrics of Socialism series offer an exploration of the Museum of Yugoslavia Fototeka photographic archive. The works, produced through a series of artistic interventions represent a psychological portrait of an era, burdened by the photographic representation of socialist propaganda. Using the strategies of materialization and subjectivization of the archive, the artist questions the socialist utopia and grandiose vision in a country which, soon after the president died, faced a decade of wars. Through layered, projected and recorded images and texts, Fabrics of Socialism creates a tension between the private moments and collective memory.

Momčilo Golub (1949, Ljubuški) Lives and works in Splitu.

“Nothing may surprise us”, 2019

In a manner typical of the artist, by paraphrasing the eternal dilemma of both the individual and the society between war and peace, the installation merges an appropriated military uniform and bits of equipment with quotes from Hegel’s famous Phenomenology of Spirit (Phänomenologie des Geistes, 1807), as well as symbols and olive branches. The philosophical citations rationalize war as a means for the state’s survival – From time to time, the State needs to strengthen the morale of the nation by means of war. Wars serve to disrupt the individual’s right to independence, so the individual would not depart from the whole – whereas the uniform bundled tightly with a belt and hung on the wall, along with a helmet camouflaged with olive branches as the universally accepted symbol of peace, express the artist’s decision to choose peace.

Bella Rune (1971, Stockholm) Lives and works in Stockholm

“All Repeated Patterns wants to cover the Whole Wide World”, 2018

This work departs from fabrics printed with Soviet propaganda designs from the 1920s and 1930s found in the archives of Ivanovo factories in Oblast, Russia. Rune often creates works in what might be called an expanded field of textile sculpture. She often uses surfaces like fabrics and clothes, combined with a smartphone screen as the stage for a digital sculpture, with the ambition “to create social lucid dreaming and everyday magic”. In her works with mobile apps in connection to physical materials, Rune is exploring a space of interaction beyond and in-between the tactility of textiles and augmented reality.

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