In the era of global uncertainty, tensions and fears caused by the COVID-19 pandemics, and understanding the situation that has particularly affected those active in the field of culture and artists, the Revizor Foundation decided to award the Revizor Scholarship for 2020 to artist Jusuf Hadžifejzović. Having in mind all the factors determining current situation, but also the importance of Jusuf Hadžifejzović in the artistic context of Bosnian-Herzegovina and beyond, the Revizor Foundation decided to grant 3,000 KM, as symbolic support to the artist’s dedication to art and his continuous efforts at cultivating cultural pluralism. His creative production that encompassed five decades of efforts on the affirmation of artistic ideas in his community, positions him among the top-ranking artists in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Hadžifejzović’s tireless presence in a broader artistic context makes him a factor of openness of his community toward the world, and an unavoidable agent of inter-cultural exchange and dialogue.
As an artist, Hadžifejzović is faced with topical themes from his immediate surrounding, such as social and economic gaps that have occurred after the collapse of the former political and economic system, the 1990s war, and economic changes in the context of a failed transition. Hadžifejzović succeeded to merge several different artistic practices and thus cover the emptied places where the system has failed. The best example for this is his years-long intervention in the business premises of the Skenderija Shopping Center in Sarajevo, and the creation of an urgent Charlama Depot Art center in the form of an experimental, yet engaged practice of resistance to the post-war political establishment. Numerous attempts to act in an alternative fashion in an economically weakened environment, where poverty and deprivation prevail, have placed Hadžifejzović within the framework of articism, although his sensitivity has been formed on the legacy of conceptual art, and of the esthetics stemming from it. His obsessive hoarding of objects, which art critics define as ”depographic”, and their exhibiting in the former shopping center, are the strategies of exploring the economic values of artwork in the context of neo-liberal capitalism that was developed on the foundations of post-socialist social, economic and cultural collapse. The spatial appropriation and the appropriation of objects that are vehemently manifested through the activities of the Charalama Depot Gallery, and his several years long project entitled Emporio Drangularijum, the esthetization and conceptualization of the economic crisis and the devaluation of cultural values - are the backbone of artistic work of Jusuf Hadžifejzović.
Charlama Depot gallery, Sarajevo
Jusuf Hadžifejzović graduated from the Department of Painting at the Academy of Fine Arts in Belgrade in 1981. From 1980 to 1982, he studied in the class of Klaus Rinke and the Staatliche Kunstakademie in Düsseldorf. He conceptualized and established the Yugoslav Documenta exhibition that lasted from 1984 to 1989 in Sarajevo. He is the founder of the Charlama Depot Gallery in Sarajevo in 2007. He organized the No Budget Biennale in 2016 and 2018. He participated in numerous domestic and international exhibitions; shoulder to shoulder with the prominent names form the world of art. He is the recipient of numerous awards for his artistic work and cultural engagement, e.g. the Pivo Karamatijević Award for Graphic Art in 1978, the Sedam sekretara SKOJ-a Award in1985, the Oslobođenje Daily Award in 1991, the 1st award for performance of the Museum of Contemporary Art in Pula in 2012, the 1st Scheme Art Museum Award in Cheongju, South Korea in 2018, as well as others.