“I was born in Yugoslavia and I grew up in the apartheid regime by Milošević. Until I was eighteen, when we got our freedom, we lived in a permanent state of crisis.” Alban Muja grew up in Mitrovica with an artist father who has designed billboards and signs to survive and support his family. His work was not allowed to be shown in institutions.
Muja has been working around the fragments of political and social subjectivities that have constructed him and his past, trying to understand the whole picture from different angles, connecting different details to the present in his films, photographs, paintings, drawings, and video-installation. His new work, commissioned by Autostrada Biennale, points at the current situation and future of monuments from the Yugoslavian period in Kosovo and the conflicted ways public spaces are constructed today. To trigger an active public discussion around these questions—which are a major concern for many Kosovar citizens—Muja focuses on a suddenly disappeared monument to equality and progress that was in the center of his hometown. To this day, the status of the monument is unknown. A phantom replica now reappears in Prizren, placed on the circular pedestal of an anti-fascist solidarity monument in the city center that was gradually destroyed after Milošević came to power. Muja plans to bring the monument back to its original location in Mitrovica.
Alban Muja (1980) was born in Mitrovica and lives in Berlin and Prishtina.