Ilija Šoškić

Ilija Šoškić (Dečani, 1935) is one of the pioneers of conceptualism, performance art, installation and video art in former Yugoslavia. He graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts in Belgrade and continued his education in Bologna. Since 1972, he has lived in Rome, where he discovered arte povere. This art movement is based on a return to simple objects/messages, the body and behavior as art, the everyday becoming meaningful and a radical critique of the government where Šoškić’s brutal materiality, use of his body in performance and the magic of his imagination come to the fore. Šoškić’s creativity is based on a critical reflection of cultural and political mythology, the relationship between man and nature and metaphysical fiction that deals with the philosophical concepts of nothingness and absence.

Nine hours after the murder of the famous Italian director Piero Paolo Pazolini in 1975, his former neighbor and friend Ilija Šoškić came to the crime scene and took 15 photographs in the location where Pazolini’s body was found. These photographs birthed the famous exhibition PPP Nova Orea (“PPP Nine Hours Later”), as an authentic testimony of an unprecedented crime.