Urtica, art and media research group (c) 1999 and Beyond
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Who is Guarding The Guardians?

Light-boxes on the gallery’s façade

  • Photo doc
  • Art and Society

    The coat of arms that guard against guardians

  • Keywords / Tags

    • Coat of arms,
    • Representation,
    • Social system,
    • Control,
    • Power,
    • Order,
    • Site-specific,
    • Guardian,
    • Society
  • Art-Bio:

    24th Nadežda Petrović Memorial Čačak “Transforming Memory. The politics of images,” Serbia. Curators: Astrid Wege and Miodrag Krkobabić

Who is Guarding The Guardians? faced to National Museum

guardns 01

Who is Guarding The Guardians?

Who is Guarding The Guardians? view from the street

guardns 02

nadezda petrovic memorijal

Guardian of The Morals faced to the Ortodox chirch

guardns 03

Morals? 3

Guardian of The Order faced to the police

guardns 04


Guardian of The Justice faced to the court

guardns 05


The intervention indicated the nearby public institutions, which are entrusted with power as the guardians of the social system.

Urtica’s statement:

Site-specific installation implied creation of a new set of symbolic representations referring to the specific surroundings of Nadežda Petrović Gallery: the police, the court, the church and the National Museum. Starting from Juvenal’s rhetorical question: “But who shall guard the guardians?”*1 The human society is differentiated into communicative subsystems (politics, law, economy, religion, culture, etc.) which cannot control operations of other systems without being controlled themselves. The issues of control and interdependence are the key elements of Urtica’s intervention. The light-boxes on the gallery’s facade displayed symbols designed in a form of guardians’ coat of arms whose ironic reflection rise awareness and act as a talismans that guard against guardians.

*1 “Sed quis custodiet ipsos custodes?” Juvenal — Decimus Iunius Iuvenalis, Roman satiric poet of the late 1st and early 2nd century CE