"...I'm not interested
in autobiography or becoming a spokesperson for Albanians.
But you could very well contradict me by reminding me that
I began my career at international events with the video
Albanian Stories , where the protagonist is my daughter.
And my latest video Klodi, (...) is the story of young Albanian.
Yes it's true. But it's not autobiography or "Albanianess"
that I want to stress. My intimacy with the material I manipulate
is essential. I'm not able to go to a place I don't know
about and immediately invent something. My relationship
with Albania is made up of closeness and distance at the
same time. The human, political, economic, and social dynamics
of Albania in these past fifteen years have certainly involved
me one both an intellectual and personal level. But investigating
this dynamic isn't , for me something autobiographical or
nostalgic . instead, it's a chance to analyze those identities
that are in crisis-that creative struggle for survival,
that joyful and tragic living at the same time."
"Adrian Paci does not
shy away from the seemingly banal. With a slightly twisted
humour, he tackles major existential and societal issues
which he chooses to express in an apposite form. An example
is his participation in the group exhibition, Tillsammans
(Together), with Swedish, Cuban and Albanian artists,
in conjunction with the Tirana Biennial 2003. An open email
discussion was the point of departure for the project; all
the participating artists had experienced various forms
of socialism. The Swedish Institute provided some funding
but could only do so for the Swedish artists. Adrian Paci
created an installation with generators, which is a common
feature of Albanian daily life, where power cuts occur at
least a few times a day. He provided energy for the Swedish
artworks during the frequent power cuts on condition that
the Swedes paid for it - a national contribution set into
Ann-Sofi Noring, from the
"Paci's videos, photographs, paintings,
and installations continue of image making oral poetry,
and social ritual. His videos unfold spontaneous narratives
that draw from the improvised participation of their subjects
and are shaped by the artists lucid editing. Often delegating
camera duties to others, Paci leaves for himself the role
of screenwriter who narrates the story . The story in fact
is the most important component in his work. Relying less
on the conventions of video art than on the traditions of
theater- reaching back to its roots in ancient religious
rituals, as in his 2002 video Vajtojca (The Weeper)
- Paci's narrative makes use of illusion and the viewer's
empathic identification with the story participants. In
his narrative he resolves the play between representation
and reality in un expected denouements that are pervaded
with a candid sense of the present, often lanced with humor
but always witness to a moment of existential fracture".
Paola Morsiani, No Simulacra, from
"Narrative in Paci's work is
not just a way to personalize his art also about "coming
across incredible stories and deciding not to remain indifferent".
Apparizione (Apparition, 2000) is a split
screen video in which his daughter sings a folk song while
smiling relatives in Albania respond. The work evolved in
response to the story of an elderly women who tried to overcome
her longing for her absent niece by playing a tape of the
girl's voice in the corridor, going into the bedroom and
pretending that she was playing next door. Back home
(2001) s a series of photographs of immigrant families posing
front of painted backdrops of houses and interiors they
have abandoned in Albania- a reversal of he photographs
of successful new lives are typically sent beck home by
migrants everywhere. Much darker are his rather crass photographs
Exit (1999), depicting dawn passport control exit,
stamps on his daughters' pale shoulder blades. When he had
these difficult images developed, Paci's local photo lab
reported him to the police as a possible Albanian child
pornographer. The video Believe me I'm an artist
(2000) is a re-staging of Paci's police interview, in which
his visa potentially at stake. The artist attempts to explain
his motivation to an officer who can't or does not want
Dominic Eichler, Strong Current,
from the catalogue
b. 1969, Szkodra, Albania
1987 - 1991 studied painting at the Academy
of Fine Arts in Tirana
1992 participated in Art and Liturgy course
at the Beato Angelico Institute in Milan
1995 - 1997 lecturer of art history and
aesthetics at the University in Szkodra
in 1997 decided to emigrate to Italy with
his family due to political reasons
from 2002 has cooperated with the Franceska
Kaufmann Gallery in Milan and the Peter Kilchman Gallery
from 2003 a lecturer of visual arts at
Accademia Carrara di Belle Arti in Bergamo and at the Iuav
University in Venice
from 1997 has lived and worked in Milan
selected one-man shows:
First At Moderna, Moderne Museet, Stockholm, S
P.S. 1 Contemporary Art Center, New York, USA
Perspective 147: Adrian Paci, Contemporary Arts
Museum Houston, Houston, USA
the Peter Kilchman Gallery, Zurich, CH
Galeria Exit, Peje, Kosovo, SCG
Slowly, the Francesca Kaufmann Gallery, Milan, I
Turn on, Galeria Via Farini, Milan, I
A Toll on Rituals, Baltic Art Center, Gotland,
the Peter Kilchman Gallery, Zurich, CH
Sorella Morte, Adrian Paci, the Francesca Kaufmann
Gallery, Milan, I
True Stories, Galeria Irida, Sofia, BG
Albanian Stories, Bildmuseet, Umea, S
Home Sweet Home, Aropia, Milan, I
Permanent Instability, the State Art Gallery, Tirana,
selected group exhibitions:
Shoot the Family, touring exhibition, USA, CAN
Always a Little Further, Venice Biennale, Venice,
Biennale of Goeteborg, G÷teborg, S
Irreducible, Miami Art Center, Miami, USA
In den Schluchten des Balkan. Kunst aus dem SŘdosten
Europas, Kunsthalle Fridericianeum Kassel, Kassel,
Draft, Kunsthalle Zurich, Zurich, CH
Blood and Honey, Sammlung Essl, Vienna, A
Se Bashku, Tirana Biennale 2, Tirana, AL
G2003, Museo delle Ossessioni, Vira, CH
Looking Awry, Apex Art, New York, USA
In Search of Balkania, Neue Galerie Graz, Graz,
Exit: Nuove Geografie Della Creativita Italiana,
Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo per l'Arte, Torino, I
Community of Surplus, 5th Werkleitz Biennial, Tornitz,
The Horse Would Know But The Horse Can't Speak,
Premio Furla, Fondazione Querini
Stampalia, Venice, I
It's Ain't Much But It's Home, Binz 39, Zurich,
Videolounge, Fondazione Andriano Olivetti, Rome,
Boundless, Belgrad Home, Collegium Artisticum,
Tirana Biennale 1, National Gallery & Chinese Pavillion,
Manifesta 3, III Biennale Internazionale d'Arte Contemporanea,
XLVIII Biennale, Venice, I
Permanent Instability, Pa˝stwowa Galeria Sztuki,
- Chiara Bertola, Adrian Paci, Toward uncertainty,
David Winton Bell Gallery, Brown University, Providence 2002 (exhibition
- Milovan Farronato, Adrian Paci, "Tema Celeste", XI
- XII 2002.
- Chiara Parisi, interview with Adrianem Paci, The Horse Would Know,
But The Horse Can't Talk, Premio Furla, Venice 2002 (exhibition catalogue).
- Stefano Casciani, Giovane, Chi? Exit Nuova geografia della creativita
italiana, "Domus", XI 2002.
- Emanuela de Cecco, Adrian Paci, GAMC, Bergamo, 2002 (exhibition
- Francesca Pasini, Albanian Stories, "Linus", IV 2002.
- Michael Nungesser, Beautiful Strangers. Albanian Kunst, "Kunstforum"
, XI - XII 2001.
- Jan-Erik Lundstrom, interviw with Adrianem Paci, "Tema
Celeste", XII - I 2001-2002.
- Jan-Erik Lundstrom, Project for a Revolution in Le Mois de la Photo
a Montreal, Montreal 2000 (exhibition catalogue).
- Igor Spagnol, Adrian Paci 2000+Arteast collection, Orangerie
Congress und Messe, Innsbruck 2000 (exhibition catalogue).
- Francesca Pasini, Acqua & arte un inedito connubio, "Il
Secolo XIX", 13.XI.2001.
- Daniele Astrologo, Adrian Paci, "Collezioni edge",
winter - spring 2001.
- Gezim Qendro, The Missing Chorius of the Tradition, "PamorArt"
- Suzana Varvarica, Adrian Paci, "Pamorart" 2000.
- Laura Frigerio, Un mondo d'arte, "Corriere della Sera"
- Edi Muka, Aperto Albania, "Flash Art International",
I - II 2001.
- Edi Muka, Happy People in Home Sweet Home, Galeria Artopia,
Milan 2001 (exhibition catalogue).
- Edi Muka, Adrian Paci. Borderline Syndrome in Manifesta 3,
Lublana 2000 (exhibition catalogue).
- Edi Muka, Beautiful Strangers, Galeria Ifa, Berlin 2000 (exhibition
- Michele Robecchi, Adrian Paci in AA.VV. Tirana Biennale 1,
Tirana 2001 (exhibition catalogue).
- Michele Robecchi, A Real Game in Kasseler Dokumentarfilm
und Videofest, Kassel 2000 (exhibition catalogue).
- Michele Robecchi, Il Muro di Adrian Paci, "Flash Art Italia",
II - III 2001.
- Joanna Sandell, Flykten fran Albanien som konstprojekt Kultur, 10.III.2001.
- Sandra Smallenburg, De haab eb de koe gaan naar Italie, "NRC Cultureel
- Sarah Kent, Light Fantastic, "Time Out", 30.VI -7.VII.1999.
- Kim Levin, Border Crossing, "Village Voice 59", 1.VIII.2000.
- Sasa Glavan, Permanent Instability in This is your shadow on my
wall, Kluże 1999 (exhibition catalogue).
[Translated by Ma│gorzata Sady]