Final Report on pedagogic mobility (teaching) within the framework of a project conducted in cooperation with partner countries at the University of Arts in Belgrade, Serbia (school year 2016/2017); Department Of Fine Arts
Lecture and workshop title: Presence Of The Past / Politics Of Memory
City / Architecture / Urbanism / Photography / Written Word / Drawing
The central motive of a lecture and workshop conducted as a part of my pedagogical mobility at the Department Of Fine Arts, University of Arts in Belgrade, Serbia was a sociological-visual study of the contemporary city, defining the emptiness of urban space, presence of the past and politics of memory, which built on shifting these ideas through defining typology and the definition of city as the living space of people. Within the framework of the interdisciplinary workshop, students have employed their own experience, processing them not only through the medium of photography, but also by using their own archives, texts, drawings or urban studies.
At the end of the workshop, each student created a logbook / journal on the given topic.
The central theme of the workshop and the lecture consisted of questions why cities become introvert, how strong is the collective memory, and how do we preserve our experiences and social events in the contemporary residential space. An equally important question for the students was how significant a role is played by the changing social events (political structures, economic disintegration of a country, or civil war) with regard to the development of a city’s structure.
My artistic, pedagogic and doctoral activities that I conducted during my pedagogic mobility in Belgrade helped me concentrate on my research and have enriched it. In recent years, I have focused on the meaning and essence of space or city within the contemporary society in Central and Eastern Europe. During the past 30 years, cities like, Belgrade or Sarajevo have experienced numerous and significant changes, not only in terms of their architecture, but also with regard to their economic and social rise or decline. That is why my stay at the University of Arts in Belgrade and the interaction with its teachers and students contributed fruitfully to my research. I consider the experience I gained during my pedagogic mobility in Belgrade as significant, which is also why I recommend visiting our partner institution also to my colleagues. It was both a challenge and an honour be able to be present in the academic environment in Belgrade – in the country where I was born – as well as to be able to work with students who were born when had already left the country. The result of my mobility was a presentation at the Department Of Photography (AFAD), and a standalone exhibition in May 2017, with which I concluded my doctoral studies.
Mgr. art. Olja Triaška Stefanović, ArtD.
In Bratislava, June 13, 2017