malo morgen, silkprint on pieces of an Austrian map (found object), ~12 x ~21,5 cm, 2020
printed with support of Matrijaršija in Belgrade
The print “malo morgen” addresses the cultural interweavings between Serbia and Austria, made visible through language.
A lot can be told with language, indeed. Serbian and (Austrian-)German share a lot of words – reminiscences of history, references of intercultural exchange. Some of these linguistic blendings originate in the time of the Austro-Hungarian monarchy, some are indicators to immigration movements due to economic factors or flight from war in Yugoslavia.
I’ve had many surprising moments during my stays in Serbia discovering those shared words. The phrase “malo morgen” caught my interest as it is like a linguistic remix: the word “malo” is Serbian, meaning “small” or “a little”; the word “morgen” is German, meaning “tomorrow”. Those words combined are a figure of speech used to express something is very unrealistic to happen like that – mostly translated with “yeah right”, “in your dreams”.
Besides that language-layer I consider the print to be like an extract of my current personal process. I’ve spent years of dreaming about the far-away, about drifting through unknown lands. But somehow I wouldn’t let myself go for a long time. When last year I’ve made huge steps towards that dream, the pandemic started and a lot of boarders where closed. But in summer it was possible to leave Austria and head East…
On one of my drifts through Belgrade, in the Deponija neighbourhood, I found a crumpled map on the ground. I was excited to pick it up, imagining to have found something exotic. However, I felt like coincidence had prepared a joke for me: it was an Austrian street map. What a suitable surface to print “malo morgen” on!
part of “Na drugi pogled // Auf den zweiten Blick // At Second Glance“ organized by the Austrian Cultural Forum Belgrade