The Place of dreams: A Missing Space
The Place of Dreams: A Missing Space is a spatial installation constructed as part of a bomb shelter in the residential block Bistrica (Novo Naselje) in Novi Sad. The installation was produced as part of the project The Place of Dreams, a story about the space of the bomb shelter told through three events with the aim of pointing out the potential of these built and somewhat forgotten spaces, with an aspiration for the spaces to be re-conceptualized and experienced once again. The artistic work was preceded by theoretical research and mapping of the shelter as a space whose basic function is to protect citizens, but which today exists as a building whose interior is empty and abandoned. However, every winter, when it's covered with snow, the space of the bomb shelter is transformed into a place for children's play, which builds a poetic image of this space. Inspired by this transformation, the research was based on the observation of the bomb shelter as a polyvalent space, as well as on the possible establishment of a poetic approach which could give a new meaning, thus displacing it outside the everyday reality of public space. The Place of Dreams: A Missing Space, as the first story and realized installation within the project The Place of Dreams, aimed to present the shelter as a space with the potential to stimulate the imagination and creative thinking, but also to evoke memories. The installation is comprised of an audio recording at the entrance, aiming to personify the shelter. It aims to establish a dialogue with the audience and the environment in which it exists, and which has forgotten it. A wooden bench and a mirror are placed above the entrance to the shelter. The bench functions as a metaphor for a gathering place and to encourage visitors to stay a while. Badges are hung above the mirror with the inscriptions "Dream!", "Why aren’t you dreaming?” "Do you dream?”, "What do you dream about?”… Every visitor has the opportunity to take a badge and thus, with their presence in the reflection of the mirror, become an important part of the work. The reflection in the mirror symbolizes a place where each individual meets themselves and others. It aims to rebrand the shelter as a gathering place for creating new stories and memories. The use value that this installation still holds today can serve as a case study, showing that urban interventions can breathe new life and activate sites which hold great value as public spaces, and are currently missing.
Text de prezentare a autorului
Aleksandra Pešterac (Bečej, 1984) is an architect focused on scene architecture. She received her doctorate from the Faculty of Technical Sciences at the University of Novi Sad, where she is currently an assistant professor leading courses in the field of scene architecture. Within the Department of Arts and Design, she is the deputy to the Head of the department, and the Scene Design Chair. She is the director of the Centre for Scene Design, Architecture and Technology - Scen (OISTAT Centre Serbia). She is an author and a mentor, regularly taking an active role in exhibitions and workshops. In 2013, she has received the “Ranko Radović” award for the project “Invisible Cities” in the category of television show, exhibition or multimedia presentation. She represented Serbia at the Prague Quadrennial two times. In 2019 as the Project Director, and in 2015 when she managed the preparation and realization of Serbia's performance which was awarded the Gold Medal for Provoking a Dialogue.