Jelsa Art Biennial 2023 opens its doors on May 30th, at 8 p.m. in the JAB Hub in Jelsa, with a discursive program about the different dimensions of the street in the grid of the Mediterranean city – kala. As part of the event, the participants will present their methodology and work in process.
In the meeting between artists Diane Dever and Jacob Bray and researchers from the Anatomy of Islands association, we will look into different layers of the kala, as perceived throughout the research: Where do the cats gather? Which stone is the smoothest in the street, and how does it smell when you step on it? Who cooks a specific dish in a different way than their neighbour, which caper covers the most of the wall which it grows from, and what lies behind the walls, in the intimate spaces of its residents?
Folkestone Fringe: Office of Field Forensics
Working in collaboration with residents, streets, plants, artists, winds, and the smell of salt, through a series of investigations into the urban, social, and ecological fabric of Jelsa, the Folkestone Fringe team asks: What dimensions of life make a place, compose the matter which makes it what it is? The Office for Field Forensics is a multimedia puzzle of impressions, insights, interventions, and research, dedicated to the forensic collection of human and non-human stories, an overview of location-specific conditions, as well as a way of observing today’s experiences of life on the island. Through a focus on spaces of intense activity, all the way to spaces of intimacy, the artists lay the foundation for understanding the street, while opening the map for visitors and artists, to offer their insight in an open process of viewing, listening, and experiencing.
Diane Dever is an interdisciplinary artist/curator who works to explore the intersections of public, private, and liminal space. Her work seeks to provoke insight into how urban space is experienced, quantified, produced and understood. She does this by making interventions in public space and by curating festivals, projects and events. She is concerned in the notions of Civic and Public – how people connect to place, each other and the everyday.
Jacob Bray is a curator/artist working in the UK, who has been working as a choreographer/director professionally since 2016 when he founded the performance company ‘Shades of Bray’. His work centres on community, social issues, politics and equality. He is captivated by human relationships and place, this is apparent by his keen interest in people, film, movement and speech. In his work, he endeavours to continue his research into the ‘realness’ or truth, and what makes us absolutely us.
Anatomy of an island: Anatomy of kola
The narrow street in Jelsa is viewed by the researchers as a micro-location of intertwined island environments and temporalities, stories, and people. It serves as a model for observing the coexistence of members of the local community bounded by the linear architectural space of a typical Dalmatian street. The starting point of the research is the Mediterranean diet, and its totality of skills, practices, beliefs, and traditions, emphasizing the social and symbolic aspects. In understanding the rhythm of life in one of Jelsa’s streets, one sees the same reflection of the rhythm of life on the entire island, which Anatomy researchers take as a topic while considering the possibilities of transformation of space and the future of the community. As part of JAB, artists will reinterpret old recipes, stories, and legends ofJelsa into a series of activities, performances, and concepts that stretch through the street.
Marina Blagaić Bergman, Ph.D., Institute of Ethnology and Folklore; president of AO Josipa Slaviček, Bachelor of Architecture; vice president of AO
Pavel Gulin Zrnić, student of Faculty of Science of the University of Zagreb – Department of Geography Juraj Šantorić, student of the University of Zadar – Department of Ethnology and Anthropology Šime Vukman, student of Faculty of Science of the University of Zagreb – Department of Geography
Co-production partners: LAB852, Sustainable Island
Program partners: Magic Carpets, Anatomy of Islands, Monade Gallery
The project is supported by the Creative Europe program, Ministry of Culture and Media of the Republic of Croatia, Municipality of Jelsa, Jelsa Tourist Board