Art - Socialist architecture disappears
A photojournalist breathes new life into nearly extinct Yugoslav Socialist architecture.
- Friday, 28 April 2017
The works of the artist, photographer and filmmaker Armin Linke focus on various human activities as well as natural and artificial landscapes. Linke attempts to document situations in which the border between reality and fiction is blurred. Born in 1966, he lives in Berlin but is a citizen of the world, always seeking out more or less well-known sites to develop this concept using his cameras. On three different trips in 2009, accompanied by the architect Srdjan Jovanovic Weiss, Linke worked on a project which involved selecting architecture from the very austere period of former Yugoslavia. He especially focused on the Balkan architecture of Serbia, Croatia, Montenegro and Bosnia- Herzegovina.
The Yugoslav Socialist Federation, as we all know, fell apart in the early 1990s and left behind monuments and infrastructure built between the ’60s and ’80s. Suspended in limbo through Linke’s photographs, these constructions reacquire some form of meaning, revealing a glorious past and emphasizing their potential for redeployment. Through his photography, Linke explores heritage, showing no regret for the symbolic and institutional significance held by these structures during the time of Colonel Tito. Now they are deserted and empty. The photographic works and the ensuing catalogue produced in 2012, which is about to be republished (Socialist Architecture: The Vanishing Act), help these remains to discover a new identity within the universe of monumental and artistic works.