• Absent Memories 2011

    A series of photographic considerations on personal and collective memory. The project started in 2011 as part of my MA Photography final work. The written project was a general analysis of unofficial art in certain Eastern European countries from the Sixties until now. Led by the idea that memory was an issue that artists from that area have very commonly treated in their works, for the practical part of the diploma project, I have also started an analysis of personal memory , yet linked to the territory and the collective it also belonged to. It consists in a series of photographs taken out from various archives, either from public institutions or private/family albums. Those are typical moments of a common person’s life during the socialist period in ex Yugoslavia. Situations like collective trips to hystorical monuments, celebrations and barbecues for May day, the Party’s anniversaries, workers collectives, etc were different moments, mixed between public and individual, but all worth of staying in someone’s family album. Some of this photos are also taken from my family’s album and as I was born later, my memories from the past seems to be different form theirs. I was born when already a different era started. And I have noticed how their memories, even in different generations, are quite similar; they had the same holidays, the same way to spend their spare time, same activities, same trust in certain values. I can’t say the same for myself or my generation. We have another history, another past, even if this ‘collective’ past somehow belongs also to us. My work here consists into introducing myself in each photo I considered important for a person’s life and growing up, in all the moments i couldn’t be present but i know about them through stories i’ve been told. It’s a way of feeling part of that past myself. That’s also a history of a country, seen through personal memories. Memories from an era that seems to be far far away. But it’s not been so long since the last baton for Tito’s birthay. That’s not suppose to be a nostalgic view, just a way for understanding values which are really far from the nowadays reality. I wanted to go through an imaginary past and by doing so, it’s becoming really mine, as it belongs to the country I was born. The operation I did through this project made me reflect about the role of history in our lives. By learning about certain facts from the past I was also learning how to relate with the present and what considerations has to be made in order to have a vision of what is going on.