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Driton Selmani: Two Jokes Make One Truth, 2019

Driton Selmani: Two Jokes Make One Truth, 2019

Two Jokes Make One Truth
We are Not like them
Driton Selmani: Two Jokes Make One Truth,
Driton Selmani: Two Jokes Make One Truth,
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We are Not like them

Driton Selmani

Two Jokes Make One Truth, 2019 part of the group show We’re Not Like Them

10 Oct. 2019 — 11 Nov. 2019

Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art ( MMSU ), Rijeka, Croatia.

Curated by: Ksenija Orelj & Sabina Salamon

“We’re Not Like Them” recognizes the (black) humor note in the perception of ‘us’ and ‘them’. The exhibition combines the aspects of a cultural study of stereotypes, a travelogue, a documentary fiction about the figure of stranger in modern Europe and an artistic satire on social landscape, with myths of superiority, colonial history, lust and obsession with purity as its main elements.

Dealing with stereotypes about the Other, some of the works in this exhibition investigate linguistic constructions that still exist in the form of oral tradition and folklore, and at the same time present language as the basis for defining the image of oneself. Driton Selmani’s installation “Two Jokes Make One Truth” uses documentary accounts, jokes and paraphrases about the Other that spark discomfort but also release negative emotional charge.

In the space between the attractive and the repulsive, the works from “We’re Not Like Them” seek to alter the known perspectives. They see auto-censorship as the main mechanism in creating stereotypical assumptions. Therefore, in contrast to traditional eulogies given in the honor of an active male traveler, warrior, conqueror, in the performative speech “Soundwords”, the main role is occupied by a woman, as an explorer and programmer in World War II.

[Excerpt from We’re Not Like Them]

See Also

Ksenija Orelj, Sabina Salamon

Artist Driton Selmani. Photo by: Damir Žižić. Courtesy of the artist.

Driton Selmani
Driton Selmani (b. 1987 in Ferizaj, Kosovo), lives and works between Prishtina and Doganaj. He completed his MA at The Arts University Bournemouth UK.

Selmani approaches the idea of perceived reality by deconstructing formations of social, political and cultural topics that have been embodied around him. At a young age, he was told to worship a country that no longer existed, which caused him to form a basis of skepticism towards any supposedly given reality. He later used this as a beneficial tool to reconstruct his beliefs into visual artefacts. In 1999, old simulacra have been replaced by new simulacra; the ornaments of a previous space have been refurbished in order to unfold with new meanings but also new uncertainties. Selmani confronts himself as a spectator of this “on-going event”, and positions himself as an actor, enacting his performances based on his personal histories, beliefs and doubts.

He has exhibited at solo and group exhibitions in Stacion Center For Contemporary Art Pristina, Ludwig Múzeum in Buda- pest, Kunstraum Niederosterreich Vienna, Casa Contemporanea São Paulo, Mediterranea Biennial 16 Ancona, U10 Belgrade, 5th Marrakesh Biennial, Amsterdam Light Festival, Fabbrica del Vapore Milan, Bregenz Biennale, Exchiesetta Polignano a Mare, National Art Gallery Tirana, Thessaloniki Center of Contempo- rary Art, Eugster || Belgrade, Norrköping Light Festival, among others.

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