Jim Kosem: Spomenik / Monument

  • ©, Jim Kosem, Spomenik / Monument

Artist Statement:


    The Spomenik project looks at the notion of the stories places tell in the context of mass graves spread throughout Slovenia. In 1945, Yugoslavia set upon a programme of purges of political opponents and undesirables at the end of World War II, resulting in over 400 known mass grave sites holding tens of thousands of victims. Spomenik is a monument as well as an archive. It is an online archive that has the records of over 21,000 victims of the massacres. However, the archive is incomplete, and a lot of the stories that go with these people are unknown, or are scattered across the globe with all the people who fled.

    The fundamental notion of Spomenik is ‘Here = There’. What it does is take the map of all of these mass gravesites scattered throughout Slovenia and shrinks it to overlay on the centre of Ljubljana. Each of these transposed ‘places’ around the city centre would be accessible via mobile phone, with which one could experience the story of one of the victims of that particular ‘place’.

    As the victors usually write history, so too do they build the monuments to that history. However, technology and the ideas about place and memory that it brings with it, offer a new hope. It offers another kind of history book, one that everyone, not just the winners, can write. It offers the casual passer-by a new type of monument, one maybe small in size, but big on relevance.


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