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The book gathers three photographic projects by Igor Ilić: Millennials, New Realness and Truth Rocks.


Millennials (2013) is the term for a roughly defined demographic of people born between 1980 and 2000. This generation, often proclaimed to be the next ‘important generation’, prefers to be called ‘the millennial generation’. They have been described as lazy, spoiled, materialistic and unemployed. They are reflection of the generation before them, but do they have a right to be cynical towards both the system and the aforementioned characterization? Although self-con dent and brought up to believe that they can achieve anything, they suffer from ‘ambitions in action.’ At the same time, their heightened desires are accompanied by unrealistic expectations. These models of behavior can be attributed to the developed post–industrial informatics capitalism of the Western–European and North–American type, while the questions as to what degree can this influence be left in Eastern-European and non-Western societies remain. The subjects of the photographs pose as fictional victims of this transition. The solemn sense of drama is part of a seemingly banal scene – young men and women at a private party. By portraying the banal as sublime, and alluding to religious themes, the melodramatic rapture translated into a contemporary scene based on artistic historical examples, the omnipresence of melancholy, apathy and helplessness is emphasized.


The starting point of the project New Realness (2016) is the fascination with the constructive nature of the photographic medium. In the absence of a definition of the photographic truth, I am looking for my subjective one by juxtaposing fiction and reality. It is these very opposites that create an interesting blend in the art of film. Therefore, by deconstructing the apparatus which creates a new film reality, I am trying to emphasize the obvious — that any photographic reality is, and has always been, subject to the processes of manipulation. By creating the film set and all the artifacts, props and practical film effects used by the filmmakers in the photographs, I am approaching the non-photographic processes of construction and the ways in which the reality on screen is created. In this way, I am trying to accentuate the fine line between an image, whose provability is not in doubt due to the assumption that what is shown is not real, and the medium of photography which often asserts the objective transfer of realty, while at the same time distorting and reconstructing our reality.


Truth Rocks – What does the rock have in common with the truth and photography? (2019)

It is actually very simple. A rock is the perfect object for testing the photographic truth. For example, a rock can be from outer space, it may be formed inside the human body, it may be worth as much as a man decides, it can cause pain, yet it can also be salutary. If the same stone represents only the document, such as the torn stone that lies in the grass, but at the same time it also represents the rock as a piece of art, observed in the given conditions of finding and viewing has two quite different meanings. It has its own attractive form made within many hours which gives different observation possibilities. Taking it out of its natural environment and isolating it in the gallery environment, the rock gains instant monumentality and even without any context, it will already be stunning enough. That part may be lost within photographic media. However, it opens another level of re-examination and truth rendering which can be set by displaying objects in their alleged natural state and environment and is supported by the descriptive title of an individual photograph. At the end it does not matter what is true and what is not, what does matter is a better understanding of our belief system which is always part of a construct.

Igor Ilić, Fake it until you make it
OV Publishing 2018/19
Photography Association Organ Vida, Zagreb, 2018
Text: Iva Prosoli and Igor Ilić
For the publisher: Marina Paulenka
Translation: Igor Ilić, Anina Oblak i Maja Merlić
Design: Branimir Kolarek
Print run: 200
Print: Kerschoffset


Project is supported by the City of Zagreb – Municipal Office for Culture.


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