The System OF Error
The System OF error
The System of error
‘’The System of Error’’ is a project consisting of a video and series of paintings that deal with various current social issues. Each painting shows pop icons, while simultaneously transmitting political messages using the names of bands, newspaper or song texts, as associations to build a story.Unfortunately, the world where we live today, only at first glance leaves the impression of a liberal, nonviolent and tolerant society in which wars, discrimination, human trafficking and child abuse are sad memory of the ancient past. We witnessed dozens of wars, both in the Balkans and the Middle East, only in the last few decades. The world has not become more generous, only the economies of presentation are different. This series of works seeks to indicate such “blind spots” in the collective consciousness of mankind, in order to open, in a different, indirect and yet completely transparent way, the issue of individual, civic and national freedom, tolerance and, of course, the resistance that occurs in such situations.The selection made here in connection with the choice of persons from the popular culture, from “The Beatles” and “The Doors”, Marilyn Monroe and “The Clash”, could not bypass Madonna and Michael Jackson, icons from the end of the last century, including other subversive elements from the music world, such as “Sisters of Mercy”, “Joy Division”, “Placebo”, “The Antwoord “…
The eclectic trend, present in the past decades in the theory and art, in the mass culture reaches its peak in patchwork, while in this series it is manifested through the linking of computer options with particular personas and contexts that become new and different, namely through the introduction of such seemingly unrelated and incompatible sentences, phrases and commands.
The members of “The Beatles” also presented as four ladybugs eating pests in camouflage uniforms, lead to a story about the system in which we live, which is ‘’bugging’’, actually not working properly. Lenon’s message, from the long-gone 1970s, against the war in Vietnam, today is equally up-to-date. Breaking to the other side, characteristic for the hippie generation, against the establishment, fixed norms, and consumer society, in the image of Morrison, comes out of the computer window. Such a context shows that today, there is not a singular but a lot of smaller resistances as a zef (a South African style that can be defined as a ghetto “fancy”, modern and “trash”. Members of this band for “zef” say: “You do not have money, but you are sexy and have style.”] aesthetics of the South African band “Die Antwoord” or a subversive version of playing with identity, sexuality, addiction and above all, the public image of self – on social networks, like Placebo. Resistance is visible through the lyrics of the band “The Clash”. Fights with the law end with the victory of the same very law and the system that sets barbed wire. With the separation of these and those, in fear of terrorism, the state provides the cover for the establishment of a police state, in which not only migrants suffer, but everyone.
On the music scene, these micro-resistances appear in each subsequent decade, after the 70s; a new wave has created the band with an unusual name “Joy Division”. The allusions to Nazi Germany, where Jew girls were taken to brothels called Joy Divisions. The name is used to raise the issue of the great problem of today: child pornography and prostitution, as well as the internet, filled with all sorts of porn content. Torrent sites that allow users to download copyrighted files anonymously have served as an inspiration in this work, with the difference that children are downloaded instead of files.Traces of riot that appear as a necessary consequence of systematic maltreatment by the state, may be found in the mainstream, as well as on the margins. The name of the painting “The Sisters of Mercy” refers to both the nuns and the Gothic rock band. The merciful sisters on the painting stand on the windows of the computer program Clean Master for cleaning junk files while hitting members of the band “The Sisters of Mercy”, who, as vampires – addicts, have blood in the corners of the lips.The standards of success set by the system, as far as hidden and twisted in the face of tolerance, sometimes are simply unattainable. With the song, “Black or white,” Michael Jackson, shown in the painting in three phases, initiates an old theme of racism. Although today it may sound almost passé, it is still very up-to-date. Political correctness turns out to be hypocrisy, which Jackson by himself proves with the lyrics and bleaching the skin. Discrimination, not only on racial but also on a national, class, religious, gender, or sex basis, unfortunately, is still very much present throughout the world.The standards of success set by the system, as far as hidden and twisted in the face of tolerance, sometimes are simply unattainable. With the song, “Black or white,” Michael Jackson, shown in the painting in three phases, like a black boy, a young man of an androgynous appearance, operated and with bleached skin, and, as a grotesque figure in the later period, initiates an old theme of racism. Although today it may sound almost passé, it is still very up-to-date. Political correctness turns out to be hypocrisy, which Jackson by himself proves with the lyrics and bleaching the skin. Discrimination, not only on racial but also on a national, class, religious, gender, or sex basis, unfortunately, is still very much present throughout the world.The painting with the face of Madonna bears a message that we are all victims of a consumer society, targeted to be consumable goods, just like the animals we consume. This biggest pop icon between two centuries, in the music and scene industry, also sings about Hollywood, a bit ironic. Although everyone wants to go to Hollywood, is it really the path to true happiness? The machinery, in the service of the system, perfidiously used Marilyn Monroe, intentionally placing her as a symbol of craving, in order to keep the auditorium obedient. Then, the same system simply removed her, which is shown here through her image and cake-bomb, as well as two computer windows surrounded by Hollywood stars. Both windows speak of Hollywood, the first one controls us with entertainment- “Sound, video and game controllers”, while the other one blurs the image of the atomic bomb- the picture of reality. The picture of a mandala with the image of Kurt Cobain in the center is altered in each segment. It talks about contemporary Western society, its conquering history, potential fears, but above all, it is the Western perception of Eastern religion and philosophy. Western society, through money, medicine, and technology, as instant solutions, seeks enlightenment – nirvana.
The American band of Armenian origin, called “System of a Down”, with intense sound and lyrics, broadcasts politically engaged messages. A symbolic depiction of the collapse of the system is shown in the picture of a dragon and fire that saturates but also purifies, radically and completely. The video work called “Shutting down” is an illustration of a collapse of a closed system, a certain matrix, which, like any rigidly isolated system, begins to “bug” over time, actually, not to function as it should. A symbolic representation of this is a cockroach, joined by a bunch of peers, which is an allusion to corrupt, bad and rotten political systems. Opposing to this, as the revolutionary power of the new, is the fire-breathing dragon, the destroyer of the already damaged and cracked system. Clear sky hints a“new spring,” a new hope for an emerging system, but soon enough, we realize it’s just a deception: We are still, this time in a different, but equally bad, matrix.
Micro-resistances to such a system, are present, visible and active throughout the planet, and as much as heterogeneous they are, all are guided by the idea that, at least, something must be said about it. Such an act of “rebellion” was supported and emphasized, by these works, as a kind of critical gesture.