What Are You Looking At?

What Are You Looking At? (Šta si se zagledala?), HD video with sound, 10’41”

Video and audio editing: Nataša Pantić

Camera: Dejan Kremić

Subtitle text taken from “Užička Republika” (dir. Ž.Mitrović, 1974)

After illegal demolition on several sites in Savamala district on Belgrade riverbank in 2016, Belgrade Waterfront project began to take shape. Despite big public protests in following months, Belgrade Waterfront, based on a controversial joint venture contract between the government of the Republic of Serbia and a private company from the United Arab Emirates and labeled as a project of national importance by the Serbian government started to grow, becoming a symbol of division between the powerless majority and a privileged few.

“What Are You Looking At?” is a HD video, 10’41”, created by Ivan Šuletić in October/November 2020.

The video has three layers, (1) a visual collage made from drone footage of Belgrade Waterfront construction site, (2) a sound of demolition, and (3) subtitles – a literal transcription of a dialogue from “Užička republika”, a 1974 Yugoslav feature film about the first, but short-lived liberated territory in WWII Europe.

The subtitle is transcribed from a scene of the 1974 feature film “Užička republika” in which a couple, Bora (Boris Buzandžić) and Nada (Božidarka Frajt) talk about love and revolution. The dialogue in the original film takes place after the first combats, and after the city of Užice has been (briefly) liberated. In “WAYLA?” video, the dialogue is intentionally left unmarked and the words form a loose structure which goes beyond gender, thus becoming an echo of the original dialogue.

“What Are You Looking At?” video In Šuletić’s opus comes after a five year long work on “Cityscape” and “Cities For Rich People” series, and a dyptich oil on canvas titled “Waterfront”, made in 2018. Visual structure of the “WAYLA?” video is based on orthogonal grid Šuletić uses throughout the series and on the compositional order of the “Waterfront” painting.