May 4, 2013 - Montenegro Pavilion at the Venice Biennale - Irena Lagator Pejović
May 4, 2013

Irena Lagator Pejović

Irena Lagator Pejović, The Society of Peaceful Co-existence, Belgrade, 2012. Light installation, prints, 300 x 210 cm. 
Photographer: Saša Reljić, Museum of Contemporary Art, Belgrade. Courtesy of the artist and Museum of Contemporary Art, Belgrade.

Irena Lagator Pejović
Image Think
1 June–24 November 2013

Vernissage: 30 May 2013, 18:30h, Montenegro Pavilion
Opening speech by Bazon Brock, artist and Professor of Aesthetics and Cultural Education at the Bergische Universität Wuppertal

Palazzo Malipiero
San Marco 3078-3079/A
Ramo Malipiero Venezia – Ground Floor

National commissioner and curator: Nataša Nikčević
Supported and funded by the Montenegro Ministry of Culture, Center of Contemporary Art, Montenegro

Montenegro will be represented by Irena Lagator Pejović‘s project Image Think. For years now, the artist has been elaborating her analysis of art as social strategy in order to suggest the potentialities of the “unlimited responsibilities” of each and every one of us. By stressing the range of human emotions, she seeks to invoke cognitive and perceptual awareness. The exhibition consists of four works: Further than Beyond, Image Think, Ecce Mundi and Camera Imaginata. The Means for Exchanging the Power of the Imagination, artists’ intervention in the catalogue.

As an interrelation between image, medium and the body, the exhibition manifests the functions of the imagination and perception, translating seeing into thinking, sensory experience into sense, and personal responsibility into a collective one.

In Further than Beyond, two golden tetrahedra made of horizontally arranged gold cotton strings are placed at different heights, one in front of the other. They refer to Gego’s ambient diagrams, Soto’s Penetrables, and, in science, string theory. The light dims at the ends of the constructed space, accentuating the moment the work disappears visually, evoking Derridean deconstruction theory.

Light, movement and mirrors in the work Image Think create an artificial, reflected Universe altered by the visitor’s presence. Referring to Orwellian “Newspeak” with the infinitive form of the verb “think,” the title aims to demonstrate how the power of imagination and mental images can survive the degeneracies of language (or any totalitarian regime).

Exiting the black box, we enter a white square (Ecce Mundi) covered in hand-drawn canvases, the multitude of its barely discernible pictograms conjuring up peaceful worlds, questioning whether peaceful worlds have already been realized, or could be achieved at the very moment.

Camera Imaginata turns image into words, relying on social media and the visitors’ participation. The work induces action instead of representation, and participation instead of reception, activating art as social strategy—a key aspect in Irena Lagator Pejović’s art.

Publications: Irena Lagator Pejović: The Society of Unlimited Responsibility. Art as Social Strategy. 2001–2011. Christa Steinle, Karin Buol-Wischenau (ed.), Neue Galerie Graz am Universalmuseum Joanneum. Verlag der Buchhandlung Walther König, Köln 2012.

Recent solo exhibitions: 2012: Limited Responsibility Society (L.L.C.), Villa Pacchiani, Santa Croce sull´Arno (Pisa), Italy. Curated by Ilaria Mariotti; The Society of Unlimited Responsibility, Museum of Contemporary Art, Belgrade.

Group shows: 2013: The Sea Is My Land – artisti dal Mediterraneo. MAXXI, Rome, Italy. Curated by Francesco Bonami and Emanuela Mazzonis (forthcoming); Spring Exhibition 2013, Kunsthal Charlottenborg, Copenhagen; Subjective Maps/Disappearances, National Gallery of Iceland, Reykjavik. 2011: Untitled (History), 12th Istanbul International Biennial. 2010: Orte/Nicht-Orte, Salzburger Kunstverein. 2004: Love it or Leave it, 5th Cetinje international biennial of contemporary art, Montenegro.

Awards: 2007: Transforming Memory. The Politics of Images, 24th Nadežda Petrović Memorial, Čačak, Serbia; 2002: Reconstruction, 4th Cetinje international biennial, Montenegro, UNESCO visual arts prize.

Grants: Artist-in-residence 2005–2006, Neue Galerie, Graz. 2005: Modelmania, with Olafur Eliasson and Yona Friedman, ArtExperience Domus Academy, Venice.

The catalogue contains essays by Nataša Nikčević, Irena Lagator Pejović and Bazon Brock.

Press kit and images in high and low res are available here.

Press office: Altofragile 
Federica Cimatti: f.cimatti [​at​] / T 39 02 67077082 / 39 333 4346146  
Giulia Mainetti: g.mainetti [​at​] / T 39 02 36522680 / 39 347 0557639

Montenegrin press:
Ana Savjak: ana.savjak [​at​] / T 382 67 305 102

Irena Lagator Pejović for the Montenegrin Pavilion at the 55th Venice Biennale
Montenegro Pavilion at the Venice Biennale
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