Alban Muja: Family Album

Alban Muja: Family Album

The Republic of Kosovo Pavilion at the Venice Biennale

Alban Muja, Family Album (1999).
Photo by Skender Muja at the Hamallaj refugee camp, Albania.
© Muja Family.
Courtesy of the artist.

March 30, 2019
Alban Muja
Family Album
The Republic of Kosovo at the Venice Biennale
May 11–November 24, 2019
Professional preview: May 8–10
Press & VIP Opening: May 9, 2pm
The Republic of Kosovo Pavilion at the Venice Biennale
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Artist: Alban Muja
Curator: Vincent Honoré
Assistant Curator: Anya Harrison
Commissioner: Arta Agani - Director of The National Gallery of Kosovo
Organization: The Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports of the Republic of Kosovo


The Republic of Kosovo is taking part for the fourth time in the 58th Venice Biennale with a major solo exhibition of new work by Alban Muja. 

Muja’s work, which takes the form of video installation, short films and documentaries, drawing, painting and performance, is largely influenced by the ongoing processes of social, political and economic transformation in his native Kosovo and across the wider region of the Balkans. Through his practice, he investigates history and socio-political themes, and links them to his position in Kosovo today.

For the Kosovo Pavilion, Muja will present a new video installation that digs deep into personal and collective memories of the Kosovo War (1998-1999) and interrogates the role that images and the media have in constructing and shaping narrative, identity and history, especially in times of conflict.

This year marks the twentieth anniversary of the end of the armed conflict in Kosovo, the last war to have been fought on European soil in the 20th century and in the continent’s youngest country, which saw 90% of its population displaced during the fighting. At the starting point of Muja’s project lies a selection of photographs of child refugees taken during the war, images that were published in newspapers and on news sites around the world, and which became synonymous with the war, emblematic of the chaos, trauma and pain communicated to the public by the global media. 20 years on, Muja tracks down the individuals, now adults, captured in these frames to delve both into the way in which the ensuing images act as carriers of personal memory and in how they helped craft a wider political and media story beyond the control of the subjects represented.

Given that two decades later, the world faces new and ever-growing hotspots of conflict and an acute refugee crisis, whose experience and reality are contingent on the proliferation and dissemination of accompanying documentary images, Muja’s project for the Kosovo Pavilion opens up a wider field of questioning about the relationship between aesthetics and politics, between subject and narrator.


Alban Muja 
Alban Muja was born in Mitrovica, Kosovo in 1980. He graduated with a Bachelor and Master’s degree from the Faculty of Arts, University of Pristina, and lives and works in Pristina.

Selected solo and group exhibitions include: Kumu Art Museum, Tallinn; Guangdong Museum of Art; Museum Of Contemporary Art – Skopje; MeetFactory, Prague; Forum Stadpark, Graz; James Gallery, New York; Zhejiang Art Museum, Hangzhou; Museum of Fine Art, Split; Trieste Contemporanea; Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Rijeka; Zachęta National Gallery of Art, Warsaw; Austrian Cultural Forum, New York; Škuc Gallery, Ljubljana; National Gallery of Kosovo, Pristina; Ludwig Museum, Budapest; Gagosian Gallery, Beverly Hills; Slovak National Gallery; Staatliche Kunsthalle, Baden-Baden; 28th Ljubljana Graphic Biennale; nGbK, Berlin; Cetinje Biennale and others. 

He has been the recipient of numerous residencies and fellowships, including: Cité Internationale des Arts, Paris; quartier21, MuseumsQuartier, Vienna; Tobacna Center/City Museum, Ljubljana; Kuda-Center for New Media, Novi Sad, Serbia; International Studio & Curatorial Program (ISCP), New York; and Apartment Project, Istanbul


Press inquiries
Khuroum Bukhari
, International Press Officer
khuroum [​at​]
T +44 7586 679273

Arlinda Hajrullahu, Press Coordinator & PR
arlindahajrullahu [​at​]
T +383 49 905 205

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The Republic of Kosovo Pavilion at the Venice Biennale
March 30, 2019

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