Within the Ready made Ilica project Garage Kamba gallery opened on May 11, 2017 with an exhibition on Ready made. The project involved: Marija Kamber, Natasa Raus, Anja Leko, Vida Meic, Josip Drdic, Anđela Zanki, Mia Marakovic, Eva Herceg, Mihael Klanjcic, Tomislav Hrsak, Domagoj Hmura, Domagoj Rogina, Bianka Garcevic, Dejan Kljun, Josipa Pentic and Jelena Petric.

9th May 2018
written by Marija Kamber

I'd like to start by skipping the atrocity that is the formal language that unwillingly repeats and re-repeats all the patterns said so many times before and jump straight to the (maybe a bit sentimental) representation of the old city courtyard in which, one day, the golden circle appeared on the garage doors. The said surface is located next to one carrying the sign Čubi Gay (no idea what it means), and its transformation marked the programme which continues again this year in a bit more than a week.

The first memory I own (if it can be called that) is rooted in the dusty entrance of Ilica 37. I was laying on the beginning of the stairway leading to the heights of the building, my head on my aunt's lap, outside the storm filled with fear raged, again. For my young mind, the chaos didn't represent something to fear, it meant excitement and adventure and although for years I wasn’t sure about the reality of the fabric of those memories, I embraced them as a beginning, liked the idea of the earliest consciousness about myself being placed on those dirty steps. Everything that followed could be viewed in a way as a symptom of those few muddled moments. The courtyard is a spectrum of colours of ever-changing cars (an old cream Yugo kicking like a mule, nondescript grey Mazda and The Red One), the sound of the Hair soundtrack an eternal playlist of a sunny day, the smile of the optician Vlatko, that always brought joy to my childhood brain as well as always frowning shoemaker Ivo, the dread of my young days.

Kamba was named after my father, who is called by the entirety of his gang of weird nicknamed friends in the same manner. I remember that he told me once that one of the said friends was at one time extremely surprised by the mere mention of his real name, the sound not connected to the person at all. There is some magic in all that, I think, some reverse closeness, where formalized names given at birth mean nothing, and the process of renaming is a part of a ritual, initiation, that transforms a person from acquaintance to a friend. And it seems to me that we did something similar with the garage: initially and permanently trapped by furniture, boxes, racquets, and tennis balls, with the all-seeing eye of Comrade Tito, it was cleared, cleaned and then ritually renamed. The idea of the transformation came from my sister Aša, the gang of workers collected and benevolently forced by me, the electricity generously provided by Vlatko, the optician in the courtyard. As for all the rest, the reasons, roof manifestations, etc, etc, they were explained enough in a multitude of very formal and repeated media releases, official explanations and applications so in these lines they won’t be repeated.

But the year has passed, and all the time before it has passed, this is the only moment of sentimentality that you will read. Become and stay involved in the program and see you in the yard.

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