Group exhibition "In a healthy body" at the November Gallery

August 10, 2021 | Ivana Nedeljković


The group exhibition Summer Flickers, which is traditionally held every summer at the November Gallery, this year is called In a Healthy Body and aims to point out a new perspective of observing the body, and the ability to accept and see it as "healthy" regardless differences and imposed discourses.

In an age of pandemics, when physical and mental health is the focus of our attention, it is time to ask ourselves about the concept of health as a social norm. In the past, abnormal bodies, behaviors, sexualities, or mental structures have been referred to in discourse as "disease," "madness," or "abnormality." In this context, queer people were labeled as "sick", and homosexuality as a sexual practice was considered deviant, and therefore their bodies were viewed as stigmatized by these labels. The struggle of the queer community for liberation from this discourse has been long, and unfortunately still continues.


                                 

A group exhibition entitled "Summer Flickers: In a Healthy Body" will be held at the November Gallery from July 22 to August 29. Aleksandra Branković, Nikola Dimitrović, Dunja Đolović, Kosta Đuraković, and Anastasija Pavić will present works in various artistic media - from photographs to videos and interactive installations - and the topics of their works concern the relationship to the body, body expression, sexuality, identity.

                               

In their works, the authors open different questions: how the discourse of a desirable and healthy body affects our perception of our own corporeality, what brings acceptance of our own body and its socially constructed or physically conditioned "imperfections", what is the relationship of non-normative sexuality to the body; in art and through art he re-examines his own identity, corporeality, but also sexuality.

                                

In the catalog of the exhibition, curator Ana Simona Zelenović explains:

This exhibition aims to point out a new perspective on body observation. The ability to accept and see the body as "healthy" regardless of differences and imposed discourse. To see the body as an integral part of being, and not something that is exclusively a source of "errors". In Dunja Đolović's collages, the process of accepting the body as it is is lyrically presented as flourishing, flowering, re-empathy with one's bodily identity through its contextualization in relation to nature.

The exhibition also ironically wants to criticize the discourse that produces supposedly "healthy bodies", and in fact destroys the bodily integrity of persons through systemic violence against the body. As we see in the works of Anastasia Pavić and Nikola Dimitrović, the body is shaped by discourse, discourse produces both desire and sexuality, our bodies and their behaviors are socially constructed with different markers.

                    

Their works are an attempt to re-examine the process of that construction and its consequences with self-irony, with a critical edge directed towards society. The works of Kosta Đuraković show us a male view of the male body, while in the works of Aleksandra Branković we come across a female view of the female body. In doing so, the exhibition further seeks to support in institutions the muted or marginalized voices of queer artists, or those who speak on queer topics.

                                   

"The depiction of my relationship with the body contrasts with the capitalist portrayal and consumption of the body through marketing, Instagram, photography, developing the distance between us and our bodies. I treated the body as a landscape, nature, putting it in counterpoint with real nature", he explained. works at exhibitions by artist Kosta Đuraković.

This exhibition represents a contribution to that struggle and promotes the possibility of accepting our body in a new context of health that brings acceptance and love for one's own body.
 
                             


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