MARTINA PETRANOVIĆ AND IVANA BAKAL
Costume driven explorations in contemporary Croatian performing arts
The video presentation aims to present several artistic models of costume driven explorations in the contemporary Croatian performing arts from 1990 till today, providing context for the more in-depth study of costume designer and multimedia artist Ivana Baka,l who experimented with costume as an object, installation and performance. The presentation is therefore organized in two parts. During the introductory part, theatre scholar Martina Petranović considers several prominent artistic explorations of the potentials of costume as an active performing agent and an important element of initiating, organizing, devising and shaping the production and generating meanings of performance with its content, form, material and performative drive. Establishing links to future Bakal’s explorations of costume, the examples reveal various individual approaches to costume focused around two main topics: costume-motivated performances aimed at questioning various types of individual and collective identities, stereotypes and social roles, or even costume-based activism (Vlasta Delimar, Ivana Popović, Tajči Čekada, Ksenija Kordić…); the significance and metamorphoses of costume in visually-oriented theatre productions liberated from the dominance and ideology of text and obscuring or redefining the borders between the performer, set design, costume design, puppet and object (Kruna Tarle). In the second part of the presentation, Martina Petranović and costume designer and multimedia artist Ivana Bakal discuss Bakal’s artistic explorations of costume beyond her classic theatre costume designs, from her involvement in the productions of the multimedia platform Shadow Casters to her research of the nature and role of costume in non-theatrical and gallery spaces (costumes made out of eco materials, waste or cast off objects; multimedia projects exploring the process of costume making and activating the audience in perceiving and understanding costume in frame of fine arts or theatre or both; costume driven performances in which the performance is initiated by, based in and organized around the costume design).
Ivana Bakal, doc.dr.art., has been professionally involved in costume design since 1986. She studied at the Faculty of Textile Technology where she graduated from a School of Higher Education obtaining a degree in clothes design in 1987. In 2010, she received a master’s degree in costume design from the same school. In 2015, she received a doctoral degree in the Postgraduate doctoral programme in painting at the Academy of Fine Arts: her doctoral dissertation was titled Theatre costume between performance, installation and object – visual theatre. Bakal designed numerous costumes, a number of sets, conducted large professional projects, and participated in individual and group exhibitions and visual projects at home and abroad. She is the author and editor of monographs of Croatian set and costume design. Ivana is a docent– associate professor in the Graduate programme of costume design at the Faculty of Textile Technology in Zagreb. She has been a member of the Croatian Freelance Artists’ Association since 1990. She is the head of the Croatian Association of Artists of Applied Arts (ULUPUH) and its Film and Theatre Section. She has received numerous awards and prizes.
Martina Petranović, PhD, is a senior scientific associate at the Division for the History of the Croatian Theatre, Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts in Zagreb, Croatia. Her main fields of interest are costume and set design, contemporary Croatian drama and theatre, and theatre historiography. She published a book on the history of Croatian theatre costume design, From Costume to Costume Design (2015) and several monographs on important Croatian costume and set designers: Recognisably Different – Costume Designer Ika Škomrlj (2014), Kamilo Tompa and Theatre (2017), and Vanda Pavelić Weinert (with Guido Quien) (2018). In collaboration with I. Bakal and A. Lederer she published A Hundred Years of Croatian Set and Costume Design 1909 – 2009 (2011), in collaboration with L. Ljubić The Répertoire of Croatian Theatres: Volume 5 (2012), and in collaboration with A. Lederer The Idea of Synthesis. Set and Costume Design in the 1950s (2019). She also authored The Stage and its Context (2013) and Theatre and (Hi)story (2015). She has curated a number of exhibitions on theatre, and has received several professional awards and prizes.
- Ivana Bakal, Visual theatre. Photo: Ivana Bakal.
- Ivana Popović, Big Blue. Photo: Markan Radeljić.