Igor Grubić (HR) Velvet Underground

research project and photo-performance, 2002

In the Lepoglava prison for serious offenders, Igor Grubić interviewed a number of inmates who volunteered to take part in the project. The interviews focused on their childhood: what they liked to play at as children, which heroes they had identified with, which of their characteristics they liked, and why, what they dreamed about doing when they grew up.

The project lasted several months, and in the end he chose four interviews. Since the jail is a very macho institution, any prisoners who allowed themselves to be photographed in soft toy costumes would be marked and mocked, and Igor Grubić decided to have himself photographed in these costumes.

This work is a dedication to some people close to him who lost out because of drugs and ended up in jail. During the visits he often thought about the opportunities for society to prevent individuals ending up in gaol and becoming outcasts, and about how people at all got into such sad and lonely places.

In this project he wanted to place the emphasis on the child’s world, the innocent and carefree time when we believe that some bright future is waiting for us. As children, we are all innocent and have no bad intentions, but most people who end up in jail probably did not have an easy childhood The artist thought about how society might have protected them in that period and so in the work wanted to focus on growing up, the period in which society and parents have the ability to affect someone’s personality and so his or her future.

His stance is that the education system should be devoted much more intensively to the real, vitally important needs of small people, to the development of creativity, to building up self-their reliance, to talk about the problems that concern them. Scientific research has shown that in milieus in which schools do carry out such programmes, there is much less violence, criminality and depression. If we take this into consideration, it is very probable that society will be safer and happier if we really manage to change things more seriously in the matter of working with children in the educational system.

Igor Grubić (HR)

Igor Grubić has worked as a multimedia artist since the early 90s. His work includes artistic interventions in public space, performances, photography and video works. Since 2000 he has worked as producer and author of documentaries, television reportages and socially engaged adverts. He has presented his pieces in many international institutions and at various events. His work has won awards on several occasions.

Contact: grubic.igor@gmail.com