This diary starts on March 11, 2020. My city just locked down. Balcony is my own dear outdoor, my invisible warrior, or my final incubator!
AiResidency Program / SPLIT / CROATIA 2020 / CULTURE HUB / Link
Temporary activation of temporarily closed spaces in the historical center of the city of Split
Between February 15 and March 7, five venues in the Old Town became open studios for artists and spaces for citizens. Through a public call “adopt a space”, citizens and civil society organizations were able to propose and implement their own programs and activities in one of the spaces. The rich program did therefore consist of open studios of eight artists from Croatia, North Macedonia, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Kosovo, as well as workshops and pop-up events (artist talks and meet-ups).
“I look at them they look back at me” Skopje / North Macedonia / 2019
Video: Zoran Shekerov
A conversation by Ilija Prokopiev with Ledia Kostandini a result of an e-mail correspondence in the period of July, 2019, right after the opening of her exhibition I look at them, they look back at me at PrivatePrint studio. Link
Solo show – Private Print Studio – Skopje – North Macedonia / 22.06-19.07.2019
The exhibition titled “I look at them, they look back at me” by the Albanian artist Ledia Kostandini at PrivatePrint Studio, brings together a series of mixed media works which unfold impressions, mind images and metaphors of the balcony and the life therein. The concept builds from there to examine the relation between private and public through the works themselves and through their positioning in both the indoor and outdoor spaces of the Studio. This way, the exhibition inherently connects with the practice of PrivatePrint Studio itself, where the borders between the private and public intertwine and are always redefined.
Photos by Zoran Shekerov
site specific intervention, part of the solo exhibition “I look at them They look back at me” – Skopje, 2019
“The exhibition extends outside, to the Studio’s terrace, with a site-specific intervention – a writing that becomes a traffic sign that draws the visitors’ attention on the landscape as an infinite borderline of the exhibition. It recalls the temporary exclusivity of the view when visiting the exhibition. Instantly, the writing speculates on spatial belongings. And with this, the audience is guided, through their interaction with the works, to re-think the wider concept of private vs. public. Where is the limit to our possession? Whose private view are we part of?”
solo show / Bazament Art Space, Tirana / April 19 – May 10, 2018 http://bazament.al
Press release / Ledia Kostandini has been occupied by a set of postcards for the past seven years. As if sent to her from the past, these seemingly marginal flaps of paper have sent her on countless journeys, seeking traces of a bygone Albania and discovering a new land along the way. Her solo exhibition at Bazament marks the first time that Kostandini presents these personal works to the public.
In 2011, Kostandini unearthed a collection of postcards sent to her grandfather, aunts, uncles, and her father, over a period of forty years. The well wishes arrived annually at their home in Pogradec, Albania, always for the new year, from all corners of the country. Sent during Albania’s political isolation between the 1950s and the 1990s, the postcards appear as mere formalisms. But collectively they transform into intimate tidings, with their life stories written on the backside of each card—enumerating essential banalities like profession, status, family life, and personal and professional friends and acquaintances. Like the tension of the postcard’s public intimacy, Kostandini’s work opens up a private world only to remind you that it was always public.
Each work in Let Us Meet in Between stages time twice, and space once. In a personal exploration of shifting time, Kostandini has re-photographed, with extreme precision, the exact view of every card. This doubling echoes a lived reality: her grandfather died immediately following a heart attack on the night of 31 December 1982; he was buried the next day. But his remote death did not to stop the cards that had already been postmarked. The installation at Bazament reveals this lived paradox of past, present, and future.
The world, and especially the world of Albania, was very different when the postcards were originally received. Years later, Albania appears nearly unrecognizable from its past. As Italo Calvino similarly observed about the “invisible” Maurilia: “just as the old postcards do not depict Maurilia as it was, but a different city which, by chance, was called Maurilia, like this one.” Albania, like Maurilia, becomes a fiction of its own making.
photo credits: Bazamentartspace, GertaXhaferaj
This Zine is part of a project called PAPERWORKS, initiated by Private Print which is an art book publisher from Skopje.
A presentation of the book “Zing City” seen on two perspectives, by its author Ledia Kostandini and the publisher Rita Petro. In this context it will be discussed about the city as a generator of different impressions in terms of aesthetics and feelings. Ledia Kostandini will develop an artist talk about several previous projects which stand on the same conceptual line.
This presentation will be in albanian.
Një prezantim i librit “Zing City” përmes dy këndvështrimeve; nga autorja e tij Ledia Kostandini dhe botuesja Rita Petro. Në këtë kontekst do të flitet për qytetin si gjenerator i përshtypjeve të ndryshme në aspektin estetik dhe emocional. Ledia Kostandini do të zhvillojë një ‘artist talk’ rreth disa projekteve paraprirëse mbi të njëjtën linjë konceptuale.
Prezantimi do të jetë në shqip.