From a conversation with
Subject: Re: jezevo
Date: 2002. studeni 11 23:33
Dear Nada, thank you for the texts.
I will have to think about my contribution and in which context
I could really add something. There is so much 'material'
around me, living as a Dutch person in a country which is
a substantial part of Jezevo. The first which comes to my
mind is the Moldovan women who leave this country for what
ever reasons and mostly so innocently but I am a landscape
artist-photographer not a portraitist. I photographed many
borders in my life and always with a Dutch passport in my
pocket. It is a free ticket, a green card. Even in the worst
circumstances I know I can rely on my position as being a
person from that Western fortress. It is so unfortunate to
see nowadays a new so called right-wing 'revolution' taking
over this already unbalanced world into a worse scheme than
ever before. I sometimes think Lenin could be blamed for it
too, screwing up brutally and violently the socialists dream
of many. A dream which had a little chance a hundred years
ago but now seems a thousand years away. I know it is not
fair and feel a childish incapability of seeing but not acting.
It reminds me of a childhood story of the dutch painter Armando.
In his youth during the second world war he lived near a 'Durchgangslager'
(camp) in Amersfoort. One day he was walking in the forest
near this camp when he saw a person escape chased by a german
soldier. The moment before the guard shot and killed the prisoner
little Armando turned to the surrounding forest trees and
asked: You are bigger than me, why don't you do something?
After this experience he dedicated his work to painting guilty
landscapes. "Feindbeobachtung" he calls it: to observe
I have taken the motorway from Zagreb to Beograd quite a
few times. I even have an imagination of where the motel is
located although ofcourse I am not sure. I remember from 1995
a sanitary stop at some restaurant and in a little tent somebody
selling among other things handcarved wooden plates with the
image of Ante Pavelic. The road goes through my head like
a film and in the corner of my eye I see it, Jezevo. From
the outside as my passport allows me..
I would like to contribute something nice and beautiful as
a contrast of what is happening.
This is probably the first time in my artists life I say this.
Knowing my works have always focused on the grim side of our
lives, dealing mainly with the history of war and guilt.
Is it possible to work inside the compound? To give for instance
a workshop to the forced visitors? I could imagine I would
like to help them to witness the beauty of the few good memories.
Maybe by working with photography with them? Letting them
capture the colors of their surroundings. The beauty of each
individual. Just working with plastic camera's, maybe a 4shooter?
(Is a camera allowed within the premises of the camp?).
Or should we just make another cake of Europe and eat it
with all it's borders?
Let me know what you think. Ron Sluik.
Artist based in Amsterdam, Holland and Chisinau, Moldava