Wanna be the hero of the story?

Hristina Mitić, Jovana Trifuljesko, Uroš Ranković, Sofija Pavković, Matej Milenković, Nada Antić


April 25th – May 11th


At the intersection between dramatic arts and standard exhibition activities, between the independent creative process and the collective cogitation of reality, the exhibition “Wanna be the HERO of the story?” is set as the first step in overcoming the established norms that are carried by different branches in the field of culture. Through this multidisciplinary art project, Hristina Mitić, Jovana Trifuljesko, Uroš Ranković, Sofija Pavković, Matej Milenković and Nada Antić play with the boundaries, both institutionally and socially imposed, as well as with the boundaries of authorship, collaboration and inspiration. Built through interchange and direct influence of all the participants on the creation of the installation, the works are not independently signed, which is an attempt to unlearn, where the process and collaboration are set as a common goal.

The beginning of the idea of ​​the exhibition “Wanna be the HERO of the story?”, is rooted in Hristina Mitić’s work “She sleeps in the pink clouds”, a piece of electronic literature that begins with offering readers a choice from which perspective (POV[1]) they want to approach the text. Using various means of expression (font, colour, photography, text break, etc.) as well as different literary genres (drama, poetry, prose, screenplay), Hristina Mitić creates an interactive drama that does not have to be performed by actors, but is directly related to the reader and his mental space. Through complex hypertextual narratives, themes of violence, loneliness, body, intrusive thoughts, femicide, problems of fetishistic consumption of images of death, and numerous others are discussed.

In order to bring the dramatic text to life within the space in a way that would be identical to the reading process itself, the exhibition begins by choosing a point of view. When reading a play, the play consumer[2]has many different paths to follow, each click on the next scene significantly changes the experience of the text, and although there is a possibility of choice while exploring the narrative, all options are already written in advance, and lead to the same final point. This is not a play. This is not a game. This is a goth lullaby.[3]

Viewpoints: npc/shadow, journalist/police and player/hero represent the roles we consciously or unconsciously accept by entering this space. The cards that instruct the course of movement through the exhibition, allow switching between active and passive participation in the artworks themselves. The motifs that are indicated within the works in the space are charged with symbolism, life and death coexisting in them, creating delusions. The seemingly everyday images in this case give the impression that something is wrong. Like a beguiling lucid dream, this place is familiar but unpleasant so we wait, almost jittery, to wake up. We pass through the uncanny valley, our presence simultaneously revives, but also disrupts. We are voyeurs, peering through the keyhole of the real people on whom Hristina Mitić’s dramatic text is based.

The stories of Milica Kostić, Bianca Devins and Lil Peep, which are explored in the drama and serve as inspiration for the exhibited art works, contain a handful of motifs, which, however diverse, end up in the same place. Their stories become symbols of certain value systems, and by dehumanizing them through grandiose narratives about death, it is forgotten that they were living, real people. Even when we decide to be a player/hero do we really have the power to change anything, what is our influence? Is it an act of heroism to simply not share a photo of dying? Scrolling quickly through the stories and reels, we move from images of cereals, mimes, song lyrics, to the worst that the human race has to offer, violence, rape and oppression. We accept that this is our reality, with one foot in the real world and the other in the constantly changing feeds. Inside the rupture, we are left with questions: What is the scope of the memory of the dead? What happens after 40 days pass, do we even have them when the cycle of the news and suffering alternates every couple of hours? Do we want to delete our profiles after death[4], or do we want to live forever, digitally? What is traumacore enough to go viral?

How many times do we have to name the things correctly in order to end this dystopian nightmare?

Photos: N. Ivanović

[1] Point of view

[2] One that becomes the text consumer

[3] Hristina Mitić, the subtitle of the play “She sleeps in the pink clouds – this is not a play, this is not a game, it’s a goth lullaby”

[4] Reminiscence of Hristine Mitić’s previous text “High noon” which problematizes the “Meta” possibility of Facebook profile removal and the creation of a virtual tombstone