She is a moving image project that revolves around a fictional protagonist -an abstract entity- with the purpose of exploring notions of pleasure, desire and personal/collective memory. The audiovisual documents used in this video-essay have been gathered during touristic trips by family members in Mexico and USA during the 1980s. She serves as an attempt to pin-point aspects of privilege, gender relations and social patterning with regards to visualizing technologies. Organized in three parts, the first part of this video essay is using excerpts from personal and shared stories that draw upon questions of identity and memory.
The second part contrasts the general features of tourism as a phenomena and touristic gaze in relation to a story of married couple and their pursuit of touristic activities. The third part is a self-reflexive account which presents the limits and possibilities of the new and fictional existence of She.
The principle aesthetical strategy deployed in this project is the effect of estrangement. She lays between two poles of identification and dis-identification of the images of woman that constantly appears on the screen, “She could be it, but She is not.”. She as an estrangement establishes a sense of ‘distance’ between She as the protagonist in the text, and the lady present in the visual material. As such, what used to appear as natural(ized), here appears as historical, what was thought of timeless and eternal is now deliberately caused and altered across the duration of the moving image. She comes into existence through human relations, defined by language, images and behaviors.
These images, reveal, on multiple levels relations of power, gender and culture, inscribed in their function as documentary ‘vacation’ films. She uses a confluent narration as a mean to perform and question the reconfiguration of these relations. As such, the voice over draws from multiple positions, stories told by close people and perceptions present in the public realm. All of which are related to the origin of these documents and their socio-economic context. She questions the role of the document when implicated in the processes of identity politics and post-colonial practices. The touristic activity of ‘seeing’ is used as a starting point to decipher the visual and its inscription in the ‘world picture’.
Ivana Mirchevska (Skopje, 1992) graduated at the Faculty of Fine Arts in Skopje, North Macedonia and completed her MFA in Accademia di Belle Arti di Brera, Milan, Italy.
Interested in the general topic of aesthetics and its (re-)presentations and manifestations, her practice aims to reflect on the possibilities of individuals and collectives to shape the visual outline of contemporary society. Her current research focuses around the documentary image, the artistic screen and representation in the contemporary moving image practice. She explores the unfixed genre of the cinematic essay as a mean of problematization of the image and introducing theory within the filmic narration.
She has recently participated at ENGAGE- Public School for Social Engagement in Artistic Research, curated by Viafarini, in Milan, Italy; Fuori Visioni 3- Festival dell’arte contemporanea, Museo Civico di Storia Naturale, Piacenza, Italy (2017); the Multimedia Festival “Underground is easier to breathe III”, Skopje, North Macedonia, as well as Biennial of Young Artists, Museum of Contemporary Art, Skopje, North Macedonia (2018) where co-authored a project with Natasha Nedelkova and Amir Karahasan.
Since 2013 Ivana Mirchevska is a part of the art collective “Kula” from Skopje.
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