New York, NY - Dia Art Foundation announces the launch of I Wish I was Born in a Hollywood Movie, a web-based project by artist Maja Bajevic, the latest in Dia's ongoing series of online artworks. The project can be seen beginning March 30 at www.diaart.org/bajevic. An opening reception will be held at Dia on Thursday, March 30, 2006, from 6 to 8 p.m. on the fifth floor at 535 West 22nd Street, New York City.
For I Wish I was Born in a Hollywood Movie, Bajevic presents photographic images she took in Mexico City, Paris, Stockholm, Amsterdam, Venice, Sarajevo, and elsewhere. In contrast to images one might find in tourist brochures, Bajevic sought out places reminiscent of scenes found in cinema noir: morose exteriors, gritty interiors with fixtures in various states of decay, bleak stairwells, windows without views, stained walls, and more. As visitors to the website click to explore the project, these images, devoid of human characters, overlay each other, presenting multiple paths through which to navigate the work. A soundtrack of music recorded in Mexico, punctuated by occasional sound effects, plays in the background.
In much of her previous work, Bajevic, who was born in Sarajevo, Bosnia-Herzegovina, addressed the social and political conditions surrounding the civil war that broke out in her native country while she was studying in Paris. She returned to Sarajevo after the war and organized significant projects that directly addressed the war. With I Wish I was Born in a Hollywood Movie, Bajevic addresses a more universal condition: the personal, internal conflict created by the disparity-especially great for the disenfranchised-between the idealized and glamorized representations of life found in popular movies and the stark realities of everyday life. As Bajevic wrote, "When reality gets confronted with that ideal picture it can only lose."
Maja Bajevic was born in 1967 in Sarajevo, where she graduated from the city's Faculty of Fine Arts. In 1996, she received an honors degree in multimedia arts at the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux Arts in Paris . She has participated in numerous exhibitions, including the 50th Venice Biennale (Bosnia-Herzegovina Pavilion) (2003); Blood & Honey: The Future is in the Balkans, Sammlung Essl, Klausterneuberg, Austria (2003); Biennial de Valencia, Spain; 2001 Istanbul Biennial, Turkey; and Manifesta 3, Ljubljana, Slovenia (2000). Her first solo exhibition in the United States was in 2004 at P.S.1, in New York City.
Artists' Projects for the Web
Dia initiated a series of web-based works in early 1995, becoming one of the first arts organizations to foster the use of the world wide web as an artistic and conceptual medium. Dia's collection of web projects currently numbers twenty-four. Previous projects include Dorothy Cross's Foxglove: digitalis purpurea, Ana Torfs' Approximations/Contradictions, Allen Ruppersberg's The New Five Foot Shelf (2004); Marijke van Warmerdam's And then the chimney smokes (2003); Glenn Ligon's Annotations (2003); Olia Lialina and Dragan Espenschied's Zombie and Mummy (2002); Jeanne Dunning's Tom Thumb: Notes Towards A Case History (2002); James Buckhouse and Holly Brubach's Tap (2002); Shimabuku's Moon Rabbit (2001); Stephen Vitiello's Tetrasomia (2000); Diller + Scofidio's Refresh (1998); and Komar and Melamid's The Most Wanted Paintings (1995). All may be visited at Dia's website, www.diaart.org.
Funding for this project has been provided the New York State Council on the Arts and Étant donnés: The French-American Fund for Contemporary Art and the New York State Council on the Arts.
Dia Art Foundation
Dia Art Foundation was founded in 1974. A nonprofit institution, Dia is internationally renowned for initiating, supporting, presenting, and preserving art projects. Dia presents public programs and its permanent collection of works from the 1960s through the present at Dia:Beacon, Riggio Galleries, in Beacon, New York, within a 300,000 square-foot former printing facility on the Hudson River. Dia plans to relocate its acclaimed contemporary exhibition program in New York City to the future entrance to the High Line park in Lower Manhattan. The Foundation also maintains long-term, site-specific projects in the western United States, in New York City, and on Long Island.
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