What I didn’t know I knew...

06.04.2023 > 06.06.2023

curated by Edi Muka
sound composition by John Young
Gallery of the Ministry of Culture, Prishtina

What I didn’t know I knew is the title of the solo exhibition by Lala Meredith-Vula at the Gallery of the Ministry of Culture in Kosova. It presents a sculptural installation and a continuous flow of images taken from the archive of the large body of work the artist has been creating along the years.

The first space of the gallery is occupied by a haystack that seems to have materialized from one of the photographs of the artist. On three of the walls in the adjacent space, projected photographic images replace one another giving the impression of a constant circular flow. Lacerated walls of an old hamam that almost merge with the skin and hair of the bathing women and children... children sleeping, parents sleeping, babies sleeping, people sleeping... an entire world asleep, resting, peaceful, troubled, disarmed... old houses like from ancient tales, barely standing... skeletons of houses, scars of an unbearable violence that seems to have swept the place... and new houses, like fake buildings rising from a film set... and uprooted bunkers resembling gigantic abstract sculptures... and tanks and armoured vehicles, orderly grouped, abandoned, decaying... and animals, eating, drinking, working, resting... and blossoming trees, and ripe harvest... and bee breeders, and honeycombs... and yet more people, and more places...

There’s something hypnotic in this image overflow. Personal stories and historical events go in and out of each other. Glimpses of a smile, a worried wrinkle, a holding hand or an old ladder tell more than the words can do.

As curator Edi Muka says: “Lala Meredith Vula photographs with her instincts. Her encounter with Kosova many years ago played an important role in shaping her artistic practice. What I didn’t know I knew is an invitation to immerse ourselves in her image universe, and in this way to join and experience her journey. The flow of images in the exhibition forms a complex map of paths to be walked through. Undertaking this mental journey, we too become enchanted by the people, the places and the stories that emerge in front of our eyes, as the land emerges from the horizon and under the feet of the traveller.”