Where are the heroes, the colonisers, the victims of the Metropolis?
Brecht, from his diary, 1921.
In an endeavour to make the interventions arising from this year’s UrbanFestival to be present longer in the public sphere, we developed the 11th festival in a broken format. Without a clear thematic framework, with no fixed date, with no concentration on a particular neighbourhood, we continuously explored the experiences and changes in the use of the city, its memory, architecture as social space, the hypertrophy of the symbolic aspects of Zagreb’s skyscrapers, their relationship to the ideologies of the past, the transformative processes oscillating between the public and private, always tirelessly exploring possible strategies of resistance to the constant trend of disappearing public space.
The diversity of research topics and newly produced works arose from the necessity that as curators we do not assign a definitive framework for the artists, but instead listen to their interests and sensibilities, so that the expanding research can include a wider circle of people from different disciplines and work on collaborative projects that escape the typical classifications.
After the research and production of new site-specific works in the first half of the year, from the 6th to the 9th of October we are presenting the conference section of the festival that brings together scholars, artists and all those concerned about these issues: “He Who Dares, Profits: City Space as a Field of Struggle”, “Hidden Histories: The Ideologies and Identities of a City”, “Resistance to the Disappearance of Public Space,” and, “In the Gap: Exploring the Social Space Between the Private and the Public.” In addition, from Friday to Sunday, the visual course takes place: “On Buildings and People.” The conference is a space for the presentation of newly produced projects and the research behind them, a space of reflection, criticism and discussion. In this sense UrbanFestival ignores everything that enters into the standard definition of a festival and does not fit in to the current ‘festivalisation’ of culture.