MARKO ERCEGOVIĆ & IGOR LASIĆ: TISAK, TWENTY-THREE NEWSSTANDS
October 27 – November 16 2020
New BAZA, Nova cesta 66, Zagreb
opening: Tuesday, October 27, 2020 at 6. p.m. until 9 p.m.
Visitors are kindly asked to enter the exhibition space in groups of up to ten people, in order to comply with the current COVID-19 infection prevention measures.
Tisak, Twenty-three Newsstands is a series of photographs taken between 2017 and 2020. Photographer Marko Ercegović, in collaboration with journalist Igor Lasić whose work has focused on following the privatization process in Croatia, started investigating company Tisak d.d. (j.s.c.). The company started under the state-owned enterprise Narodna štampa, which was founded in 1946, and within which a separate branch dedicated to distribution was established in the 1970s. After the privatization in the 1990s, Tisak was affiliated by the Agrokor concern, whose major business crisis has had an impact on the recent economic situation in Croatia and the region. Tisak’s popular red newsstands were turned into spots serving different purposes, thus becoming perhaps the most visible urban sign of the economic collapse that directly and indirectly affected numerous workers. En face photographs of the newsstands’ fronts document constellations of publicly displayed products. Very often the photographs feature a person, mostly a woman, whose face is visible through a small rectangular window. "I believe that, in a visual sense, the nature of oppression by the displayed products and a false sense of choice, as well as the position of the salesperson, is self-explanatory," Ercegović says. Photographs are accompanied, in the manner of footnotes, by statements of workers given to Lasić during the research.
"They like to work at a newsstand, particularly to communicate with people; they don’t mind being isolated in such a way; they think they are often overburdened by the job’s demands while not being adequately paid; they believe their bosses should take their opinions into account more; they dream of having a toilet within the newsstand – these are typical thoughts of a saleswoman working for the Tisak plus company, whose staff is composed almost exclusively of women, some of which agreed to talk to us for the purposes of our reportage and the accompanying exhibition. We had multiple motives behind our project, but the workers are those who we dedicated it to.
However, we have a reason to believe that we would have continued taking them for granted, discreet and inconspicuous behind piles of crossword magazines, gum and candy, lighters, and above all ads, had it not been for the other, so called ‘’broader’’ motives, which, in the end, drew our attention to the living and engaged beings inside those extremely important mini stores…" (excerpt from the text by Igor Lasić)
Marko Ercegović (1975, Dubrovnik) graduated from the Academy of Dramatic Arts in Zagreb, Department of Cinematography. His work focuses primarily on experimental video and photography. He exhibited his work in 20 solo and 30 group exhibitions both in Croatia and abroad, and his works have been published in a number of magazines and publications. He has published six photography books. He lives and works in Zagreb.
Igor Lasić (1970, Dubrovnik) has worked as a journalist since 1994. He has been a contributor for weekly magazine Novosti since 2009. He writes for Deutsche Welle, Bilten, and Lupiga. He lives and works in Zagreb.
curators: Vesna Vuković, Ana Kutleša, Ivana Hanaček [BLOK]
production and organization: BLOK - Local Base for Culture Refreshment
graphic design: Dario Dević
set-up: Ivan Kuharić
The exhibition is part of the "Artists for the neighbourhood" program, supported by the Ministry of Culture of the Republic Croatia and the Zagreb City Office for Culture.
The BAZA’s annual program is supported by the ‘’Kultura nova’’ foundation.
Monday - Friday: 4 p.m. – 8 p.m.
Saturday: 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.