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"Tirana/Tyranny: Human Experience of Tyranny - Albania (1944-1990)"
2002-01-23 until 2002-04-28
Centre de Cultura Contemporania de Barcelona
Tirana: the capital of Albania
Tyranny: power of a single person, exercised with a view to oppression
Tirana/Tyranny: an exhibition about the human experience of tyranny,
centring on the case of Albania (1944-1990)
Albania is a country forgotten by the world which reappeared to the eyes
of public opinion in the form of images of ships filled to overflowing
with Albania refugees in the docks of Italian ports from 1991 to 1997.
The year 1985 had seen the death of the Stalinist dictator Enver Hoxha.
Since 1945 he had dominated Albania with his bloody and paranoid rule,
bringing about the countrys total isolation from the rest of the world.
He exercised a tyranny which affected every aspect of Albania life:
physical, psychological and aesthetic.
The exhibition Tirana/Tyranny takes as its point of departure this harsh
reality as seen by the Albanian writer Bashkim Shehu, an exile in
Barcelona since 1997. Using architectural references (symbolic
constructions of the architecture of power), audiovisual montages,
paintings and sculptures of socialist realism, statues of Communist
leaders removed from public squares, books and photographs, Shehu dissects
the tyranny exerted by Hoxha and turns it into a metaphor. In this way,
the exhibition extrapolates the case of Albania to many others which have
occurred in the course of contemporary history.