sreda, 26. november 2008


Maja Slavec dedicated one whole year to the artistic project S i t u a k t c i j a. The artist followed the life of some women in them everyday activities, taking part in the simple actions of the day like privileged observer, but not intrusive. So we can see women portrayed in interior spaces of the house like kitchens, bathrooms, bedrooms; but also during passing moments from room to room, or external from housing spaces, public spaces. In every case, the woman is alone.

Maja Slavec inquires into the real life and capture the situation (in Slovenian situacija) in which the woman is alone with herself. These are instants of intimate life (akt, naked; also in a broad sense) in which emerge subtly femininity and eroticism. Here, however, is completely absent any intention that leads to think of a voyeuristic look into intimacy. The woman isn’t a potential erotic object for outer observer.

In fact the artist deepens the topic of the self-perception of femininity and eroticism. And she speaks of the fear to loose this self-perception. In her photos, consequently, we can recognize a latent sadness. In this way the photographic memory of S i t u a k t c i j a records also sadness, which has a poetic value.

The artist specifies “There’s a sort of poetry in being sad. Sadness is poetic”. If poetry has a certain inclination for emptiness [Iosif Brodskij], S i t u a k t c i j a describes this inclination tactfully, succeeding in express exactly the poetry, not only the semantic, of the situations.

Just for this inclination to poetry built in the project concept, Maja Slavec photography, although portray real life moments, is not purely realistic like greater part of contemporary situation photography: it meet precise formal and aesthetic fundamental rules (composition, light) maintaining yet the absence of artifice in the representation of reality.

The final result is a photographic series in which there isn’t narrative will.

S i t u a k t c i j a brings in itself the quality of immediacy of the real life.

Michele Drascek


četrtek, 09. oktober 2008

14th International Festival of Contemporary
Arts City of Women

Surova Simbioza / RAW SYMBIOSIS animals_nature_culture
Gallery ŠKUC, Ljubljana, Slovenia

project: CARNIVOROUS fashion collection
fashion designe: Mirica Strnad and Nataša Brecelj
instalation and photography: Maja Slavec

četrtek, 15. maj 2008

Preglov trg 10
1000 Ljubljana

ARTEINGUENA 2008, International Competition, Italy

"IMPACT - ART" /place + relationships
Now in Arteinguena collection in Brescia

The block was built in 1985, mostly for young families from ex Yugoslavia. The relations between neighbors were alive. Children were playing all-day, parents were visiting each other and happened community events (cleaning initiatives; public flat that was used for meetings and as a Club room in winter for the children, where they could play; e.g.: we made theater events for our parents). In 1991 Slovenia became an Independent State and communities began to change. The changing structure of economy had a big impact on people life style and lots of people lost their jobs. Slovenia was a strong industrial country in former Yugoslavia, but now we are strong in trade economy. This year we are the leading country in European Union: a story of success for a young country. My goal is to see how these positive changes reflect in everyday life in our neighborhood.

We live under the same roof and we became complete strangers: there are almost no relations between the neighbors. We have cameras in the public hall, locks on the public entrance and even on the single floors. The benches were removed so that the people wouldn’t gather in front of the block and disturb the others. The playgrounds are empty. Now we have marble walls in the public hall and mirrors in the elevators, something impossible before because of the vandalism caused by adolescent boys.

So, I decided to create a connection with my neighbors, and try to see how they live at home. I send them a letter in which I announced my visit in a week or two. I started to work the 8th February 2008, during a national cultural holiday.

I rang on their doors and I asked them if they would let me in for few minutes to take photos of them. In this way I had the opportunity to reconnect the relations between us. We have 14 floors, 139 apartments in which are living 357. I achieve my goal in 30 apartments for a total of 55 people. In my visits I made new friendships and recover some old ones with friends of my childhood. Almost with everyone we had feelings of nostalgia for the old times. On the other hand, a lot of people didn’t even want to open the door: they just shammed as they weren’t at home.
To conclude, the new style of life reduced the relations. Now we are much more addicted to television, shopping and computers. Among my visits just one lady said that she loves to read books. The music was usually played from the radio or not even played. The television is watched in almost every apartment, even during lunch time. A lot of young people were in front of their computers playing games or surfing on the Internet. Some spoke with me, but they didn’t want to be photographed. I noticed only one flat with art works and I managed to take a picture of a new arrival – a painting of France Slana - that came in the collection of the owner just when I was there.

After I have finished the invasion of privacy, I prepared an exhibition of the photographs in a public hall. The purpose was to motivate the neighbors to confront each other and to see if they could connect, if the relations between them could change because they all were part of a project. And to find out what kind of reaction could I get as a photographer. The reactions were positive. Someone said that I gave them a theme to talk about.

Now when I meet them in the elevator or in a hall we have a chat and they are interested in my work. Part of my purpose was to bring an experience of contemporary art to their home, show them that they can be a part of it and encourage the interest for art events in general.

The result of the final work is a collage, where I poetically connected the materials that I developed during my project. The final composition is a symbolic platform. In the background there is a picture of a block, while in front there is a mosaic of shots of my neighbors at home. The composition emphasizes the inner life of a standing still building. It represents the opposition between the fragile lives that are constantly changing and the power of the history and infinity.

četrtek, 20. marec 2008

Exhibited in ILLUMINATORS in Yekaterinburg Russia

opening 10.4.2008


Performance in public place

The movement of a dancer has the intention to create circles in a space. The circles represent the public system (political, cultural, economical, etc.) that has an impact on our life, with or without our approval.

The “tondo” is a micro system of intimate space, a system that exists among others. I see the intimate and the public structures as closed systems in which we could fit in or not. The movement of the dancer creates a intimate story that is trying to fit in a public structure, but the figure is constantly breaking the perfect shape and creating his/her own ones. The figure represents the autonomy of a living being, with the frustrations that he/she develops in the process of growth.

The main shape – the circle - can be seen as an ocular or as a general shape of life path, that I understand as a repetition in general. As Artists, I think that we have the same path to follow, but we have a larger autonomy than the others. We constantly revaluate the system, we tighten its borders and we account for our actions under the autonomy of Art.

The interconnection between the space of the dancer and the people involved by chance in the performance represent the relations tied in our society, inside the system. In the end: Are these relations under our control? Or, since they are tied in the system, is the system itself that control our relations? Who is the winner? The individual or the system? Is it ours the path in which we choose to walk? Or is controlled by the system of our political, economical or cultural structures? Are we really free in our decisions?

The second part of the video goes backwards: it is the revaluation of a life that ended. What could we do better? Do we accept the past or we are sorry for the things we did? After all, is the power of being still so strong to arrive to our life end with a smile? What means to be significant? And to whom? Did our life as artists have an impact in the society?

Original duration: 42 minutes.

nedelja, 20. januar 2008


When I thought about the word “underwear” the first association that came to my mind was with the color white.
Because in old times it was usually white.

From the hygienic perspective, the white cotton underwear can be wash at 95° C and so it is clinical clean.
I was wondering what kind of underwear women wear nowadays in the everyday life. Do they choose to wear it because of the color, mood, sex appeal, health…? I took portraits of women of different ages, to see the difference between young and older. I chose eight portraits to represent this project.

Interesting point of view:

- Influence of the media, fashion, MTV, magazines.
- Are they sexually active?
- Are they caring for their health?
- Personality.
- Stage of life (still a girl, in a relationship or not, mother, grandmother)