Horizons – Ivona Vlašić
In late 2013 and early 2014, the Art Workshop Lazareti in Dubrovnik published three beautiful books of artists: Slaven Tolj’s “Citius. Altius. Fortius”, Ivana Dražić Selmani’s “Na Dančama” and Ivona Vlašić’s “Horizonti”.
This was my first encounter with Ivona’s photo-collages which impressed me a great deal, considering I’m from Dubrovnik myself, because they speak out about the changes in our city in a subtle, but also romantic and witty manner. Without any revolt or condemnation, only with an infinite longing for the time and meanings which have vanished, and which were – for our generation – the cornerstones of our value system. Ivana wrote to me in an e-mail about her work:
- This work is a kind of a photo-collage. The photographs of people were enlarged, glued to a plexiglass and then, photographed againwhich placed them within a new context with a reversed background, i.e. an inverted horizon.I sometimes use the original sites where the photoswere taken, and sometimes, I put them against a new background characteristic of the time we are currently living in. By photographing them, the image of the city which is disappearingreemerges; the city which we are frantically attempting to preserve or keep in our memoryis accompanied by the reversed backgrounds of this new city which hasbeen forced upon us with all its new values and rules, in which we – as citizens – make do, manage or avoid it all together
This work is an attempt to preserve some of my own memories and my inner world, as well as my friends’ worlds who have allowed me to use their photographs and memories. I’m trying to come to terms with these new developments and major changes that we are faced with in the city like Dubrovnik, where very quickly – literally within a few days – the images of the city change (gardens, streets, parks, famous panoramas that we grew accustomed to disappear, making way for new streets, buildings, squares, shops).
The reverse horizon in my photographs symbolizes that “turn”, when everything that was familiar disappears and gives way to something else (that inner feeling oflosing ground under your feet). In the foreground of the reverse horizon is the time that has passed and the values long forgotten, ahead of the present moment where the opposite values of those wewere taught as children prevail. In my selection of photographs I attempted to find such images which summon up memories of a city familiar to me.
People in my photos are smiling, innocently posing, oblivious to the new situation…
Searching for a place on the horizon…
Prepared by: Ana Opalić