An old Yugoslav collection of science fiction works – in Serbo-Croatian – published by Galaksija (Galaxy) magazine as the Andromeda almanac in 1977. It included A report from the Cosmos by Ljubiša Jocić and an excerpt from 2018 A.D. or the King Kong Blues by Sam Lundwall which are below (in English). It’s worth preserving and sharing it.
A report from the Cosmos – Ljubiša Jocić
we sailed among free electrons and protons
electronic rotation is just being established somewhere
and not in the same direction we came across rare
hydrogen fields and entered the plasma once again
i can’t report what kind of malfunction happened on the ship
because the specialist for electronic devices
had no soul like the other members of the crew and
i can’t contact them
i find myself after the ship disintegrated
in the state of my surroundings
and after the catastrophe my affective life
remained untouched i’m using the spirituality of the electrons
and i’m reporting this stop milky way galaxy 23 – 26
Translated by Gorica Orsholits
Excerpt from 2018 A. D. or the King Kong Blues – Sam Lundwall
“Alright, alright,” said the presenter, “you can’t always win but anyone can try. And with that, ladies and gentlemen, let’s move on the next part of our program THIS IS MY LIFE, our spectacular show where four different families try to appeal to your compassion by telling you about their deplorable situations. Those of you who have a voting button on your television can choose the family whose story moves you the most. The prize, as always, goes to the family with the most votes. Welcome to SM5X, the television station which always offers you…”
The process of inventing a new visual language is also a revolution, a revolution of sensibility, in a sense as important as the armed seizure of power and thus the change of the world. Walter Benjamin, a German theorist from the world of the living, said that the Nazis had aestheticized politics, and in order to counteract this, the avant-garde had to politicize the aesthetic. The wandering ghosts, as the new vanguard class, are the natural subjects for the birth of a new art, and while issuing political dissent, they should also strive to produce aesthetic dissent. This new aesthetic value must come from a pluralistic narrative. The ideology propagated by the underworld is highly dependent on a single narrative chain and value system, i.e. the opportunity to be reincarnated depends on karma, reincarnation and the judgment and verdict of the bureaucratic system headed by the King of Hell. Such a unipolar narrative is a source of oppression, and it also dissolves the possibility of resistance by the spirits. The spirits should realize that the ideology of the underworld presents itself as the only possible value, and thus inhibits us from imagining more alternative values. Those alternative values are not unimaginable, but they must be beyond the reach of the existing order, and they are what the spirits living under the oppression of the existing order need to try to imagine. After all, the necessary foundation of all revolutions is imagination itself.
By Radomir Konstantinovic; originally published as Filosofija Palanke
Edited and with an Introduction by Branislav Jakovljevic, Translation by Ljiljana Nikolic and Branislav Jakovljevic and available for the first time in English in 2021
The Philosophy of Parochialism is Radomir Konstantinović’s (1928–2011) most celebrated and reviled book, first published in Belgrade as Filosofija palanke in 1969. “A virtually unique example of indigenous Balkan discourse independent of European philosophy … developed as a study of the spirit of the palanka or market-town mentality, Konstantinovic’s book discerns at the margin of Enlightened Europe an oppositional rationality, the provincial mind versus Hegelian cosmopolitan reason. While the latter is open to the world with relational subjectivity, the reasoning of the provincial mind closes itself into a subjectivity that excludes the world.”
—Dušan I. Bjelic, from the introduction to Balkan as Metaphor: Between Globalization and Fragmentation
Excerpt from the original text Filosofija Palanke:
Architecture is in constant flux between the virtual and the real, as everything that was or is practical and real in architecture emanates from the virtual. A young team from the University of Tokyo participating in this year’s Venice Architecture Biennale (“How will we live together?”) introduced a new interactive virtual building process, which you can follow live and in VR, that makes the interaction between the real and the virtual more flexible in collaboration with the curators of the UAE national pavilion.
More information about Obuchi and Sato labs’ (University of Tokyo) contribution and project can be found here:
Autopoetics aims to create poetry which doesn’t rely on language and its known grammatical-syntactical structure. It is an attempt to overcome the limitations of currently known linguistic territories which are inadequate for artistic communication through simple and non-purely-verbal poetic forms (e.g. visual poetry, Signalism). Autopoetics doesn’t arise from the act of will and consciousness but from the space of the preconscious impulse; from the time and place before knowledge. With autopoetics, the poetess attempts to create a world, from the beginning, and not only to explain it. Autopoetics which shies away from language, creates a cosmic poetry that addresses everyone and isn’t constrained by the borders of language, nationalism(s), or cultures. Thus autopoetics explores the possibility of strengthening the sensuous experience, of creating a deeper involvement in poetic sensibility through a reduction of constraints of language.
Read the rest of the issue here.
Unsung heroes, but human beings capable of influencing the course of political events and history: it is to them, to these civil heroes who often remain invisible and silent, to solidarity, and to the great ideals that today more than ever before are needed, that this exhibition is dedicated: “Bigger than Myself. Heroic Voices from Ex-Yugoslavia” curated by Zdenka Badovinac with Giulia Ferracci, to be held in Galleria 3 at the MAXXI the National Museum of 21st Century Arts from May 5 to September 12, 2021.
A composite and complex mosaic of almost one hundred works by over sixty artists from the former Yugoslav countries that tells not just the difficult story of a territory traversed over the centuries by wars, conflicts, and instability, but also describes the utopistic of a country – Socialist Yugoslavia – initially built on the idea of brotherhood between nations and unity among workers.
From the days of World War II to the drama of civil wars, from the processes of independence until more recent years, these artists come to terms with their history, reinterpreted through the gestures of those heroes who, in different ways and at different times, sacrificed their lives for others in the name of a higher ideal, “greater than them,” as the title of the exhibition tells us.
But the exhibition is more about the present than about the past, It speaks about our time of globalization, consumerism, power based on new technology, environmental and refugees’ crisis. We live in times that are increasingly dominated by cynicism, by fear of the other, by consumerism, and by the dramatic consequences of a model of a hypercompetitive society that is increasingly individualistic, the exhibition “Più grande di me” aims to bear a message of peace, liberty, equality, brotherhood, and sustainability.
As Giovanna Melandri, President of Fondazione MAXXI says: “For many years, MAXXI has explored the artistic ferment that has grown behind the Mediterranean and Middle Eastern horizon, in areas where the historical wounds are yet to heal. It is the common thread of our research, a tool of “cultural diplomacy” that aims to offer, through the knowledge and dissemination of art, a possible reinterpretation of the past and a light with which to explore the future. This exhibition describes the artistic scene of a territory, shaken over the centuries by multiple upheavals. The voices and sensitivity of the artists exhibited here explore the deep entanglement between nationalisms and the torsions of extractive capitalism; they tell of another vision concerning the person and the community. Upon closer examination, they evoke a different, social, sustainable Europe, in which identities and cultures can coexist and enrich one another. Perhaps this is the challenge we should all be engaged in.”
Hou Hanru, MAXXI’s Artistic Director, stated: “This project is a new step of MAXXI’s continuous research focus on the interactions between Italy and the Mediterranean region, bringing further the manifestation of the dynamics that constantly form and reform the artistic cultural, and geopolitical space of what we call Europe, a mutating region that is key to restructuring of the globalized world”.
Zdenka Badovinac says: “For this exhibition, I conceived the concept that describes two forces that are “bigger than myself,” which means bigger than us, individuals. One is an idea, a value, for which one would be willing to die. It refers to heroism, to the question: “what are relevant heroic gestures today?” The other is about the global capital, a total power that dominates everything today.
It is true that the exhibition speaks primarily of this duality hidden in its title, the duality between the ideal and the pragmatic, but at the same time, it overcomes this duality by bringing into its narrative the third element. It should be emphasized here that both aspects, idealistic and pragmatic, are explicitly human. However, this is only apparently so, as the third force, a non-human voice, the voice of nature, is present throughout the exhibition”.
Alain Badiou is one of the most inventive and compelling French philosophers. He visited Belgrade on multiple occasions where he gave lectures and interviews. In the videos below, Alain Badiou discusses the four procedures of truth. As exposed in his book The True Life directed at today’s youth, he considers that true life is: “A life that does not limit itself either to obedience or the satisfaction of immediate impulses. A life in which the subject constitutes herself as a subject. For me there are four domains in which truth manifests itself, what I call the four procedures for the construction of truth: art, love, politics and science. My wish for the youth is that they traverse these four conditions: to encounter art in all its forms; to be loving in fidelity, and for a long time; and to participate in the political reconstruction of a world of justice, as against the world such as it is. And not to be as ignorant of science as they currently are, so that they do not leave it in the hands of technology or capital.”