Ivana Ivković

Ivana Ivković gained international recognition by shifting the infamous classical roles between women and men in her drawings, performances and site-specific works. The notions of identity and gendered experience play a key role in her work.

Ivana Ivković (b. 1979 in Belgrade/RS) holds an M.A. in drawing from the Faculty of Fine Arts in Belgrade. Since 2002 she has had several solo shows in Serbia, Austria, Germany, Italy, Spain, the USA, Denmark, Turkey, Canada and India, as well as participations in many international group exhibitions. Ivković is a three-time finalist of the prestigious Politika prize for the best exhibition and the holder of KulturKontakt Austria, Vienna/AT. She has held numerous artist’s residencies and scholarships: Residency Unlimited, New York/US (2008); Casa dell Arte, Bodrum/TR (2012); Les Gens Heureux, Copenhagen/DK (2013); scholarship of the City of Linz, Linz/AT (2014); Art Residency scholarship in Beirut/LB (2015); and full stipend Can Serrat in Barcelona/ES (2016). Her works are included in collections at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Belgrade/RS, October Salon in Belgrade/RS, Wiener Städtische Collection of Contemporary Art in Vienna/AT, Telenor Collection of Serbian Contemporary Art in Belgrade/RS, the Museum of Belgrade City, and in several private collections in New York/US, Basel/CH, Berlin/DE. Ivana Ivković lives and works in Belgrade/RS.

The following artwork will be shown as part of the EVROVIZION.CROSSING STORIES AND SPACES project:

MONUMENT: NO ONE IS LOST, video performance and installation – scaffolding, 3-channel video, 20 min, sound, colour, Novi Sad/RS, 2021.
Directed by Ivana Ivković
Cinematography by Ivan Zupanc
Editing by Vladan Obradović
© Ivana Ivković

MONUMENT: NO ONE IS LOST by Ivana Ivković presents a continuation of the artist’s multimedia research started several years ago, in which she creates performative tableau vivant situations in specific contexts and places. Issues of identity and gender stereotypes figure strongly in Ivković’s work, whereby she uses the naked and/or semi-naked male body as a performative instrument or medium of specific sensitivity and sensuality. Ivković’s works have always been focused on their viewers’ experiences, i.e. their emotional and psychological perception of ambiences and events.

MONUMENT: NO ONE IS LOST problematises the process of deconstruction and reconstruction of gender roles in the political, ethical and symbolic reflection of the biopolitics of female perception. A larger group of male performers arranged with minimal choreography within the Museum of Contemporary Art Vojvodina act out a scenario representing a developed composition of The Last Judgment – a deconstruction of this biblical play that “re-enacts” the momentum just after it. What happens next? After every revolution, a new heaven is created, but what does an individual do in that space of newly conquered and acquired freedom? What exactly do the processes of the deconstruction of old beliefs leave behind? This work is about the fear of the unknown, about seeing ourselves through confronted others, and about what happens after we have understood the other within a wide spectrum of all the challenges of acceptance and of living in freedom.

This artwork is part of the ifa art collection.

Unique performance
Friday, 28.04.2023 at 19:00
Goethe-Institut Athen
Text: Jordan Cvetanović

The new site-specific performance by the artist Ivana Ivković entitled MONUMENT: THE SCHOOL OF ATHENS is part of MONUMENT: NO ONE IS LOST, a series of delegated performances created for the long-term exhibition project EVROVIZION. CROSSING STORIES AND SPACES by ifa (Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen). The series explores the relationship between the human (male) body, identity, and the specific context of place. It reflects on contemporary time, its (post-)apocalyptic nature, and the sense of the end of the world as we know it, questioning whether there is room for certain new options and choices that depend on the individual. The inversion of a gaze between exposed male bodies in formation on one side, and the audience on the other, makes it function like a mirror that reflects various issues, layers of history, prejudices, and taboos present in different societies.

The initial metaphor – the visual and ideological point of reference for the performance in Athens – is Raphael's eponymous masterpiece The School of Athens, a fresco located in the Apostolic Palace in Vatican City. In this complex allegory of secular knowledge and philosophy, Raphael presents a scene with some of the most important ancient and classical philosophers, scientists and artists, contemplating and debating in a splendid architectural setting inspired by ancient Greece. The performance MONUMENT: THE SCHOOL OF ATHENS starts from the ambiguity of the fresco itself, representing the values of Western civilization rooted in ancient Greek thought and renewed through the Renaissance and humanism, pointing out the connection with the present time, in which the world is in a state of extreme exhaustion and experiencing numerous ecological, ethical and political crises. Inspired by the humanistic vision of the painting, the performance is also a call for communication on these themes, as well as an invitation to engage in exchange and dialogue about the issues and dilemmas that we, as humanity, face today. The performance addresses questions of Greek identity and the image of classical Greece, pointing to the tension between different narratives – one coming from outside, created and nurtured by the West, and one existing within Greek society, both historically and in the present.

The performance MONUMENT: THE SCHOOL OF ATHENS will last approximately two hours and will take place in the amphitheatre of the Goethe-Institut in Athens. Most of the performers are based in Athens, except for three actors from Belgrade/RS.

The performance has been commissioned by ifa (Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen).

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