Words Without Words

Milena Bakmaz and Dina Belančić


January 15th – 31st

The exhibition titled “Words without Words” is an attempt of artists Milena Bakmaz and Dina Belančić to investigate the social and artistic problem of language and communication.

For Milena Bakmaz, language as people’s primary mode of communication, also represents a crucial component of their identity.  For Milena it can also be understood as a significant method to emphasize conflicts stemming from misunderstanding and not accepting differences between people and groups of people, which then leads to invalidating essential needs for mutual acknowledgement, a secure life, autonomous cultural identities and their social recognition. The denial of the mentioned points could represent a cause to longstanding social conflict, segregation and discrimination. Milena Bakmaz sees conflict from sociological, political, linguistic and artistic aspects and stresses them by utilizing the works of other authors through the method of posing questions and looking for answers. Communication as a result, is initiated through opening a perspective of mutual understanding, which proves to possibly be the only path to solve the accumulated conflicts in a person’s life.

In the visual work of Dina Belančić, the artist speaks out words that cannot be heard. By visualising this ‘mute’ speech, she wants to draw attention to the possibility of a form of communication in which the spoken becomes the object of desire, imagination, free representation, in a word, the object of unhindered interactive viewer participation in interpreting speech, but also the work. This kind of visualisation of tacit, interactive communication also shows the crucial paradox of the conceptual discourse in art. Namely, a concept without a (previously assigned, constricting) concept which Dina Belančić opts for, has to simply silence itself, to speak without actually saying anything in order to articulate its utopian (interactive) intention. Only then can the spoken be absolutely freely interpreted by the other. And this might be the prevalent paradox of contemporary art that in order to say the ‘right’ thing today, it has to be simultaneously done with and without words.

Photo: N. Ivanović