Lexicon for the Provisional Future(s)

Rotated History

March 24th, 2009


This is part two of the Kung Fu Mostar story Azra and I wrote in dialogue — please read her entry (included in the lexicon) and then continue here.

Image: Ban Jelacic rotated, photograph by Khadija Z Carroll.

The artist Milica Tomic said of the new wave of Bruce Lee, Rocky Balboa, and Samantha Fox statues that they are “a dangerous joke in which history is being erased and replaced by Mickey Mouse.” Perhaps, for this reason Bruce Lee suffered damaging blows in the badlands of the Mostar community park after both Bosniaks and Croats, claimed that the fighter was an unworthy representative because of his militant pose. His golden body was heavily vandalized with graffiti. Unknown writers expressed their aggression towards the monument. So the statue was rotated into a neutral direction, but the graffiti continued until Bruce had to be taken away from Mostar.

This was not the first time that a Balkan monument was covered, disappeared, and reappeared rotated. The heroic monumental statue of Ban Jelačić that was erected in 1866, facing east in the central ‘Jelačić square’ of Zagreb to celebrate his defense of the city against the Ottomans, was suddenly covered up in 1945. It disappeared from under the covers and in 1947 on top of the cover, as on a giant plinth, a communist star was displayed. Ban Jelačić’s statue was exiled from its plinth until 1990 when it returned to the center of Zagreb. Since then Jelačić’s figure looks in the other direction: now he faces West!

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Lexicon Entries

Browse through the lexicon entries below.