Late, again i am, if we look at my own reply to Owen’s comment, promissing a new post days ago…
i had many doors to unlock, many cigarettes to smoke, and many phone conversations to handle...
there are certainly many things making it hard for me to get online, or even to type on a computer: not only that i have no internet access at home, but i don’t even have a computer:) that sure is humorous at this day and age! i just never was able to grab enough to have those, by not grabbing more then enough to survivie. so i count that having a blog and running it, even the way i do, is a success.
i like to find pieces of modern images in my life reduced technologicaly to old ways...
I saw a couple days ago one article in daily Politika. It was about a young woman, an artist, who is about to start her humanitarian project for the orphans. the article first informed us on origins of a young artist: a respectfull rich family. then it informed us that the artist has lived abroad all her life, appart from one of her 26 years of life, that she spent in Belgrade. So, my mother read it too and took it to my place to talk about it over a cofe.
mom was drinking...
“what you do is nothing, because papers don’t write about it. your art is nothing, because it is not presented to the rich and famous worldwide. you have no values, otherwise big companies and big funds would support you too, like they support her. see, what she makes, is, what you make, is not. that is how it goes. and don’t give me your stupid story about idea, puprose, meaning, use of project. so what if you get your children to be strong individuals? so what if you teach them to articulate themselves? so what if they get courage to be active in society instead of sitting on the margine waiting for help to come or life to happen? so what if they all learn about film, drama and theatre? so what if you help the children from one orphan house to make their own films or other art forms? you are zero. papers don’t write about you. this girl is everything, papers wrote about her. she doesn’t have to do one single bit for the children, she can make a few pieces on her own, in one day, and present the result. she will justufy the immage of a humanitarian engaged artist, she is a godess. what she will manage in a month, you will not do in a whole year.”
i was having...
From one stand point, my mom is right. truth is what is told to public in papers or on TV. my work is not visible, again. but something deep inside me doesn’t want me to become that young successfull girl, who lived around the world due to her rich family, who payed a fortune to study art, who pays a fortune for each exibition worldwide, even rent to galeries… who probably pays for awards she winns… she claims she is obliged to give something to the community, since one bank has given her a lot of money to make her last exibition, so she gives workshops to little orphans…
am i this plane? is this concrete piece our solid culture?
I cannot do that. Nobody gives me money for my art, so i’m not obliged. what obliges me is my knowledge that society is not just, that orphans are disprivileged in many ways. so i spent a year researching and writing interactive educative program for them, on film and drama. then i applied to many contests, public ones. only one, i won. the smallest of all. even that small fund decided that i was not allowed to winn the contest, but the center of orphan houses. further on, the center was to decide on distribution of project money. sure, my program and method had to be evaluated by all competent officials, ministry for social care, as well as important art institutions. only with highest recomandations, i was allowed to work: i was made a partner to the center for orphans, who got to be the carrier of the whole project. so, i did everything, invested my rare combination of education, knowledge and experience, created a program, i still coordinate ateliers or workshops, educate children but also support them to become selfconfident, help them bring out their own creations… i run all aspects of project. i am author of the project and the one carryng it out on my own back. money went to the institution that assigned me the minimum wage. minimum for the author, coordinator of workshops/ateliers, for previous research and for writing precise project goals and program of alternative education (interactive, full of dynamic games and conversation)…
our first workshop, they talked to one another, and to me... we were getting to know what we expect...
children interested in my offer have changed – hope walked into their lives. they call me, asking for my extra time, and i am always here for them. One girl told me that with me she learned that her life hasn’t stopped when she came to the orphan house, as she had believed, and that she can live again, creating with my support. one boy told me he has never met a normal adult person who doesn’t order him around, but listens to his words and ideas. many ask if their work can be presented outside of the orphanage… that i don’t know, you see. because i am not rich, to pay promotion for this project. the other girl is already talking about the project that she hasn’t started yet, and it is clear that that project is hers, and will be publically presented. not my case. it is forbiden to me to present childrens’ work without special procedures. sure, certain persons from the center for orphans already told me that they are sick of children being abused for promotion of outsiders like me, and that i forget about showing childrens’ work around… too bad, because if i was to show it, it would be to support and promote children. sadly, only if i were a little rich bitch, there would be a guarantee of showing project results as my personal glory (no child abuse there, only letting the rich justify their wealth… what do children and i have to justify? nothing! we better keep silent, unheard, invisible… maybe some day, some other rich person with well payed degrees and elite galeries will come to use us, give us some crunchies as charity, put us in a cage and show us to the world, proving their noble harts and love for art, as well as talent. until then, hush, hush!)
my children take me all the way to the moon and back, while the rich safelly distribute funds for art projects behind their bright windows
so, i wonder… is my mom right? do i really do not exist? is it true that in fact i did nothing, because no papers or TV chanels talk about me? and what is important here? that children get support, skills, space to be creative, or promotion of us, who bring them occasions to advance..? i think children matter firstly. secondly, it’s not shame to say who worked to support them. in the case of the girl, i think children will get a little seduced by this godess who will march in and out, leaving them behind to dream about priviledges they will never have, hoping they will get to see her again, praying that she remembers their faces, as her own face keeps occuring in all (worldwide) media, payed and afforded by her rich family. in my case, i will run arround begging for any public review or show of the work accomplished by orphans, but i will be rejected, because there is no rich family to prove its noble intentions by such action. and children and i don’t really matter.
the children do matter to me, above all! and you know, i know they learned to care about what i can give them!
so, who matters? the rich. they made it before they even started. children and i can work all we can, we do not matter.
again, they matter to me!
but, i know something: children i work with learn important things. they learn to keep their attention on new unknown things, they learn to shape their thoughts so that they keep other people’s attention – they learn to communicate! sure, some will learn to act, some to take photos, some to work with camera, some to set lights, some to design costumes or stage, some to record sound, some to direct films, some to direct plays… but that is not the main thing. communication and daring to speak out, daring to ask to be heard, daring to express opinion and capturing attention of others- that is the main common problem of prphans in Serbia, so that was my goal, and that my children are overcoming. Sure, i made my research before i wrote a program for them. then, i used my profession and combined it with experiences, courses, trainings i gained in activism /part of alternative education/, then i went through all dynamic games and modified them for the young age; only then i put up a serious program to work by and to fulfill… it took one year of my time.
during that year, i captured this moment, very precious to me, because it reminds me on how many things i am able to push and pull all alone at the same time
the rest you know: project valued highly by all most important and competent institutions and individuals, money asigned to the center for orphans to distribute, not to me… i got asigned a small salary for five months (by small i mean minimum wage or less… less, i think, for it is not a salary, but it’s called a honnorarium, so it can be smaller then the minimun wage… on the news, 2 days ago, they announced the avarage salary in Serbia, and to me it sounded like a fortune i couldn’t dream of… so i guess my monthly honorarium is smaller then the serbian minimum wage!)
still, children matter. When we go, it will be up to them to think and act, to lead and bring this society where we never did. because we were too busy confirming tributes to the privileged, and keeping the poor silent. oops! me and my children do not quite fit into this blessed division of power and influence! god forbid, i dare speaking out, and so do my scholars! and this damn internet – even i, who don’t have it in my house, get online and spread a word or two… while my kids write scripts, make films, act… sure, our project humiliates me if we let my work be valued in money, but we don’t: we value it in strength it gives to children, in success to turn screaming little monsters into young humans who have attention for things and keep others’ attention on what they shape as ideas…
he would amaise you with his talants!
i came to the orphanage where i was told, no child will keep its interest in my excellent program for more then a week. that was in september. i went on, because i had already worked to prepare and win minimum conditions for the project for over a year! now i have children who are my colleagues! but we are not good enough to be in the press. my parents are not a respectful rich family, i haven’t had a happy rich life all around the globe, neither did my scholars. the small fund that supports this program ordered that we were not assigned means to rent any technical equipment, because it is expensive. immagine, film workshops without equipment!
i needed to bring in some light...
so, i had a long battle with my state, to raise a credit from a fund for development, as a start up credit, to open a job to myself. after 18 months of them rejecting me for lack of documents, i managed to prove them talking crap each time and won my credit, and thus i bought HDV camera and other equipment for professional shootings. i used it to shoot my film, “the State”. now i bring that same camera to work with my children. i know that all my colleagues think i am crazy and that kids should never get opportunity to work on HDV, not orphans! HDV, in common opinion, might be allowed to the rich children, but not orphans. haha! my orphans and i work on HDV; state never helped us, not even me with a credit, because they will be payed back with interest. so i use my camera, and my scholars too. i make up to my kids for everything that i put in the project, and that the fund didn’t want to cover: basically everything that costs a lot to rent. we still don’t have a computer to eddit on, because i don’t have one for my film. but what i get for my film, i will get for theirs. And papers will not write about me, a self supported artist who doesn’t compromise nor sell out for cheep political ideas, whose parents cannot buy me glory and good image. but i will deliver my scholars what they deserve, and they will come out stronger. also, they will know that a text in a newspaper doesn’t make them who they are, but their own acts and opinions. they already know that newspaper lie and manipulate, which i never told them. actually, i told them: hey, not necessarely! you have to always doublecheck every information!
together with kids, i did bring in light
i am proud of my kids. my hart feels warm, when i see that they are proud of me, and trust me, even though we are not a newspaper topic.
light seams to be coming and going anyways on its own...
I asked my mom if she realized which info opened the text she brought me: she didn’t remember that it was info on pwerfull rich family. I asked about second: she didn’t know it was about belonging to the world jet set and living all around the globe. My mother only said: don’t you think you could look for that girl and learn from her how to get awarded really enormous amounts of money for art projects, like she was awarded by one bank. Let me tell you, I applied with this project for children without parent care, and many others, on many many places, and some places were banks. the most i ever got from banks was letter of rejection, if anything at all. And i know how to write projects, that is not a problem.
and i love glorious ways of sun letting us know there will always be light, even when it sets to sleep...
draw your own conclusions. i am not bitter. i am angry that small is the number of individuals daring to think and judge by thinking over information, while most people go safe, ass licking to the rich and rejecting the poor (unless abusing the poor to prove the noble deeds of the rich, but that is the poor “for one use only” which then are to be thrown away).
i do as much as i can. i have this blog. i shot another film, and i will finish it, even though i have no computer. i will find a way to show my films, both of most recent fils, even though i am not well connected with the film festivals or distributers. i work with orphans, i will do all in my power to support them. i will fight for a small computer to edit their films, it’s easier then to cut my own which is big. and i will make it! i will give another exibition of colage, my trouble is framing them, i haven’t been able to pay my bills because i was framing collage for exibition and also photographs… but that is honestly me: art, message and excibition above telephone or electricity! and i keep writing poetry, my conceptual work is fully developed, poems written, i need to publish… it’s not just a book of poetry, it’s a conceptual piece. my scripts… other camera work… i am a monster, i am. i give my scholars freedom to create, i give them all i can that project doesn’t want to pay for… there will be more free minds this way, and we will not just vanish, nor transform into empty newspaper stories!
free to see a sea where there is none
and big news: for those who read my blog and speak serbian, i got my own radio show! it is internet radion, google it: NOVI RADIO BEOGRAD is a home page, and PROGRAM UZIVO means live program. i will start on sunday evening. every sunday evening at 10h, it’s my show, for three hours. So i will get to do live on radio what i do here in written!
anais and sandra, helping me
I will put on this blog ideas and topics for my radio show some 3 days ahead, and please, if you have comments, write them. if anyone wishes to be guest in my show, let me know too, since i can use skype for live interviews on radio!
well, it is not the biggest daily magazine, but the smallest internet radio station, but i am getting my sphere of influence, i am!
maybe people behind this window will listen to me sunday evenings, nights...
victory, isn’t it, for somebody pushed to the margine, who yet never stops yelling: not gonna stay here, yo! i’ll make another system, not gonna stay on your stupid margine, hey! i’m coming, beware!
squated behind cement, garbage and old waist, maybe i did manage to find the best view out,, right this time
Photos by: Jelena Markovic
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