Home Is Where You Are

Ivan Hrkaš


December 11th – 27th

“Home is where you are” is a series of photographs in which the author, Ivan Hrkaš, visually narrates his intimate story through the architectural objects and urban spaces of Sarajevo and Belgrade. At first glance, they may leave the impression of being trivial, almost impersonal and random. However, the subjects are distinct, honest and carefully chosen. The photographs portray the relationship between the author and his partner in a way in which they use the buildings in the background, public spaces such as parks, paths or passages as a scene, serving the purpose of a continual narrator and witness of their relationship. Through these seemingly spontaneous scenes, Hrkaš reconstructs memories of moments spent together and recalls them in the present moment as if they would be taking place this very instant. Sites and particular buildings from the photographs in both cities have a special history for the author and his partner. However, now they have a new meaning, a new value to which they are tied to by the means of a mutual present. The selected public space, previewed buildings and various times of day of the taken photos symbolically suggest the development of a relationship between two people and how they shape it, how emotions develop and how they themselves accept emotional changes through which they go through as a couple, but also individually. The intention is best illustrated by placing the human figure in contrast to the architecture, both inside and outside. The outside space suggests meetings, the first encounters in a neutral setting, where insecurity is mixed with the desire to get to know the other person. In the cases where the architecture dominates, the hidden figure inside the building is more difficult to observe suggesting a game of seduction, working towards having security and trust, up until the relationship becomes solid, messy, complex – real, while scenes in the half-shadow, in the passage of a building or in front of the house illustrate closeness, something forbidden, an intimacy that stays away from the public eye.

The work reminds the viewer of holiday snapshots, a touristic trip, the journey to places which we explore for the first time, or maybe over and over again; places which we come back to, because we are emotionally attached to the particular space, people and memories. And memories awaken emotions that lead us through life, that make us particularly special to the person we want to keep next to us. The work “Home is where you are” could be read as a love letter, through which the author wants to remind his partner of their past shared every day. It can also function as a visual diary that follows the rhythm and dynamics of a partnership.

This is a love story between two cities, in two cities, between memories.

Text: Silvija Dervišefendić
Photo: N. Ivanović