Only Victor’s Justice

Installation
Year: 2015

 

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Only Victor’s Justice 2015 – DUM Project Space (2015), Ljubljana, Slovenia

 

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Only Victor’s Justice 2015 – DUM Project Space (2015), Ljubljana, Slovenia

 

From the beginning of history, humans have struggled with their inner nature. According to Schopenhauer, the core of human nature can be reduced to one basic instinct, the will to live. He explains that the universe and everything in it is driven by the pimordial instinct to live, which results in the need for pleasure and procreation, as well as the avoidance of pain and death. Nietzsche later took that concept to another level, coining the term will to power or der Wille zur Macht, which he said was one of the forces driving every human being: the need for achievement, ambition, and the striving to reach the highest possible position in life.

This unavoidable compulsion for power and dominance is perhaps one of the most significant factors shaping history itself. The ability to influence and control certain circumstances, to exercise power in a political or social context, is endemic to humans as social beings, firing the hearts of those who are prepared to compete for the ultimate prize, power. In this sense, history has been made by actions which determined the realities not only of those holding power, but all of those who happen to be involved. Collateral damage was somehow always accepted as an feature of these actions, almost as an inevitable justification in the name of a greater idea. To write history is to capture immortality, but at whose expense?

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Only Victor’s Justice 2015 – DUM Project Space (2015), Ljubljana, Slovenia

 

Looking from a contemporary perspective at notions current in Europe and the Middle East, from geopolitical destabilisation, engineered immigration crises and economic exhaustion, it seems that throughout history, the agendas of socio-political circumstances are always being recycled. Too frequently, history is made at the expense of subjects who are stripped of their ability to choose, act and express themselves. Nevertheless, views of this process are always diverse; guilt, anger, resistance and vulnerability are noticeable on the both sides, among both the dominant and the dominated, with each side claiming their own reasons, driven by the fear of loss. The ruling class fights underdogs to hold on to power; the underdogs fight the ruling class to take power. Once the powerless overthrow their rulers, they are captured in the same perpetuated process of defending and maintaining power as those before them: the never-ending game for power.

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Only Victor’s Justice 2015 – DUM Project Space (2015), Ljubljana, Slovenia

 

Only Victor’s Justice is an installation which deals with the controversy of the human condition, and the power plays and geopolitical relations that shape the history we remember. The work itself is composed of differing elements, combined to create a writing set. The set comprises a box made of Afromosia wood, a calligrapher’s quill, a book and two inkwells. The book is entitled HISTORIA MAGISTRA VITAE EST and contains 195 empty pages, a page for each country in the world. The inkwells, one full, one empty, are placed beside the book. One inkwell is filled with blood donated by an anonymous immigrant (refugee) as a symbol of suffering and endurance; the other is empty, ready to be filled with the blood of future victims. The blood is the key element of this work, symbolising the perpetual sacrifice of innocents in the name of greater history. Those who write history often ignore the consequences of their actions. The interests of those few with power dominate the circumstances of anyone else involved. Who are those that dare to draw more blood in the name of greatness? If history is life’s teacher, have we not learned from our mistakes? Or do we need to repeat the same lesson? Only Victor’s Justice executive’s executor’s tool, serves as a symbolic reminder of these conditions, making us re-think and question our position in the decisions we make.