Velvet Undergorund – Igor Grubić

In Lepoglava jail for hard criminals I interviewed several prisoners, who voluntarily agreed to take part in the project.
I focussed the interview on their childhood: what were

their favourite games, which of their heros they believed they had more in common, what they liked about them most and why, what they imagined they would be when they grew up… The project took few months period. I’ ve selected four interviews. Because of outspoken machoism among the prisoners and in order to prevent them from abusive labelling and mockery, it was me who put on the velvet costumes of animals on the photos.

As an adolescent I also found myself loitering on the margin between the game and reality, experimenting with drugs.

This work is dedicated to some people close to me, who lost their way due to drugs abuse, dyed or ended up in prison. On the occasion of my visit to them I often pondered how was it possible for them to end up in such a sad and solitary place, what makes a person get lost…

Main point of this project pertains to childhood, to that very period in our lives when all of us are very alike in our dreams and expectations. We are all equally innocent, frank, sincere, naive, natural, creative and filled with hope that some day we’ll become as brave, strong, courageous and righteous as our heros we imitate in the games. We were looking with big children’s eyes what tomorrow would bring. We believed that Tomorrow would be very important and magnificent. Throughout painful process of growing up we learn that hero’s path is an everyday struggle in which we often stumble due to our weaknesses and , unfortunately, we become just antihero of our childhood imagination.

Zagreb, 2002


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