Public memory in post-conflict Skopje: Civic art as resistance to narratives of ethnicity and disintegration

Zoran POPOSKI, Marija TODOROVA

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Abstract

Zoran Poposki and Marija Todorova’s chapter examines the state-sponsored public art project ‘Skopje 2014’, launched by the Macedonian government shortly after the cessation of ethno-national conflict in the region. Incorporating neo-classical public buildings and monuments, equestrian statues, fountains and even a Triumphant Arch, Poposki and Todorova interrogate how these enormous projects are part of the newly formed state’s effort to re-establish Macedonian identity in relation to European, Christian and bourgeois values, while concomitantly denying its Oriental and Islamic past. The authors explore how these monuments of Macedonian historical figures have deliberately transformed the main square of Skopje into a symbolically charged, if politically contested, site of memory as these resurgent nationalist narratives of imagery and identity reignite animosities and divisions between the different communities of Macedonia’s capital. Poposki and Todorova investigate various acts of creative resistance devised to counter these nationalist narratives in the work of Macedonian new media artists whose work resists the transformation of Skopje’s public space into a place of spectacular power. Copyright © 2016 The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s).
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPost-conflict performance, film and visual arts: Cities of memory
EditorsDes O’RAWE, Mark PHELAN
Place of PublicationLondon
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Pages95-112
ISBN (Print)9781137439543, 9781137439550, 9781349683864
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2016

Citation

Poposki, Z., & Todorova, M. (2016). Public memory in post-conflict Skopje: Civic art as resistance to narratives of ethnicity and disintegration. In D. O'Rawe & M. Phelan (Eds.), Post-conflict performance, film and visual arts: Cities of memory (pp. 95-112). London: Palgrave Macmillan.

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