Stay at Home, DIVA! (2020)

Curator: Lara Plavčak
SCCA-Ljubljana, 2020
Duration: 18’44’’
Premiere: World Wide Web during the Coronavirus Pandemic (20. 3. 2020)

SCCA-Ljubljana joins the #stayathome online cultural programs, which these days seek to ease our persistence of staying home in the wake of the new coronavirus epidemic by opening their archives and inviting people to discover new worlds in home comfort. Program Stay Home, DIVA! was prepared in her home office by Lara Plavčak, curator and SCCA-Ljubljana collaborator.

This eclectic selection loosely follows the associations with the current situation of self-isolation in the wake of the virus corona epidemic and our uncertainty about what the future could bring. At the same time, the selection itself seeks to establish a point of empathy and moderate optimism with viewers and spectators. Selection seeks to communicate and validate shared experiences. It again offers a new insight into the archive of DIVA Stationary video, film and media art.

The 18-minute selection begins with art video The Curtain of the artistic couple Small but Dangers, which is formally reminiscent of our current look from home offices. The video is silent and shot in one cadre. According to the authors, ”the canvas-made display is flapping in the wind; shadows of the bars are dancing a dramatic dance, which at times becomes abstract. It turns out that the curtain is not illuminated by the sun, but by the monitor. Video The Curtain is a song about a video.

Nataša Skušek and Mladen Stropnik in the video Free Time discuss the management of time in modern family life. Through their own experience, the artists explore the overload and expectations imposed on the individual by modern society. Similarly, the time of self-isolation today tries to be presented as an ideal opportunity for us to embark on projects, hobbies, books, films and tasks that we procrastinate with. Such an ‘opportunity’ denies an individual’s real-life experience of an emergency and uncertain situation, which requires an additional cognitive and emotional toll on the individual, which is ignored by the overproduction society as an unnecessary obstacle.

In the video It Will Be OK, artist Vesna Bukovec promises that everything will be OK as she plays the plush toy as if in a mantra. Despite the temptation to let go of this statement, we quickly doubt when the video approaches apathetic parodies of popular new age movements, which attribute the powers of suggestive thoughts to an almost magical features.

The selection sequence ends with a video for the popular song Little Terrace. The collage of nostalgic imagery of everyday life in Ljubljana is accompanied by words about the little sad room in which the protagonists of the song reside, which makes the current listeners feel more real today than before.

Small but dangers, The Curtain, 3′ 5”
SBD, 2013
» video
Small but dangers, Zavesa

Nataša Skušek, Mladen Stropnik, Prosti čas / Free Time, 6′ 4”
N.S., M.S., 2007
» video
Nataša Skušek, Mladen Stropnik, Prosti čas / Free Time

Vesna Bukovec, It Will Be OK, 3′ 3”
V.B., 2009
» video
Vesna Bukovec, It Will Be OK

Mirko Simić, Small Terrace (U redu), 4′ 3”
Bris, 1992
» video
Mirko Simić, Mala terasa