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LIEBER PERO. Poetic Story of a Time

Lana Lovrenčić ; Institut za povijest umjetnosti, Zagreb, Hrvatska

Puni tekst: hrvatski pdf 1.580 Kb


str. 148-163

preuzimanja: 213



In the period between 1990 and 1997, Petar Dabac gradually composed his private photographs into albums he called Lieber Pero, thus creating a photographic diary incomparable to anything else on the Croatian art scene of the time. He first exhibited this cycle in 1993, opening with each subsequent exhibition new questions about the nature of memory and questioning the attitude towards the albums from which the exhibited works originated. This paper examines aspects of Petar Dabac’ photographic diary Lieber Pero that have not been singled out in previous reviews of the artist's oeuvre: the character of the photographs and the narrative aspect, which both change with the transition from the private to the public sphere (private photographs become exhibits), as well as processuality as an important typological determinant of the artwork. Petar Dabac made this cycle as a fully-formed artist. In relation to his previous thirty years of photographic activity, Lieber Pero can be viewed in two ways: as a kind of summary of previous artistic experience, but also as a break with his previous work. Through a detailed analysis based on historiography and the contextualization of the artistic process, one can identify not only the basic starting points of the diary but also the complex social and political circumstances that marked the first half of the 1990s, a period characterised by ruptures between people that are reflected in Dabac' artistic practice. Issues related to the themes of remembrance and recollection, and construction and reconstruction of history through the medium of photography are key to understanding this cycle. Although Dabac never portrays it directly, the wartime atmosphere influenced his photographs, as well as the decisions that determined the direction of the artist's private life, social relations, and love affairs. The interpretation of this complex work is also based on the fact that the albums recreate the lived experience, and include a series of diary entries, newspaper clippings and other memorabilia that outline the objective circumstances and the subjective experience of a moment. Building a narrative with a time delay, the artist ultimately presents it to the public, adjusting the number of photographs and their formats to exhibition spaces, i.e. exhibition conditions. Although at first glance they seem intimate, Petar Dabac's diary transcends the private zone on several levels, pointing to real life of a period that is rarely examined outside of conventional historical sources.

Ključne riječi

Petar Dabac; photographic album; photographic diary; self and social memory; 1990s; Croatia

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