SPECIAL EDITION PRE-ORDER: Stanislava Pinchuk – The Theatre of War
SPECIAL EDITION PRE-ORDER: Stanislava Pinchuk – The Theatre of War
SPECIAL EDITION PRE-ORDER: Stanislava Pinchuk – The Theatre of War
SPECIAL EDITION PRE-ORDER: Stanislava Pinchuk – The Theatre of War
SPECIAL EDITION PRE-ORDER: Stanislava Pinchuk – The Theatre of War
SPECIAL EDITION PRE-ORDER: Stanislava Pinchuk – The Theatre of War
SPECIAL EDITION PRE-ORDER: Stanislava Pinchuk – The Theatre of War
SPECIAL EDITION PRE-ORDER: Stanislava Pinchuk – The Theatre of War
SPECIAL EDITION PRE-ORDER: Stanislava Pinchuk – The Theatre of War

SPECIAL EDITION PRE-ORDER: Stanislava Pinchuk – The Theatre of War

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LAUNCHING SEPTEMBER 2024

SPECIAL EDITION
Perimeter Editions and the artist are producing a special edition of 50 copies, which includes a genuine offset proof sheet from the book-printing process (approx. 70 x 100cm), signed and numbered by the artist. Shown in the last image.

Ukrainian soldiers engage in intensive combat training at an unmarked location; a female choir rehearse in a Sarajevo theatre once used to stage defiant performances during the Bosnian War; youths gather at Homer’s Tomb on the Greek island of Ios, a span of the Mediterranean through which asylum seekers make their treacherous journeys. Published as a visual translation of her major three-channel moving image work The Theatre of War, Stanislava Pinchuk’s first book with Perimeter Editions recasts the opening lines of Homer’s epic poem the Iliad across geography, history, language, and the throes of current armed conflict. 

Just as the Iliad is set nine years into the Trojan War, Pinchuk undertook the making of The Theatre of War – which was created as part of the Mordant Family Moving Image Commission and debuted at the Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI) from 19 February to 10 June 2024 – nine years into Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. As with much of the Sarajevo-based, Ukrainian-Australian artist’s work, the film and its translation into book form work to map the contours of global conflict with great sensitivity, poeticism, and unexpected beauty. Here, she weaves together three charged performances which draw on the oral and folk traditions from which the Iliad evolved; just as the poem contains many gruesome descriptions of death on the battlefield, so do these performers focus our attention on both the life-force and vulnerability of bodies in contemporary theatres of war.

In antiquity, the Iliad was recited by rhapsodes over three days, often to the mnemonic beat of an accompanying lyre. In Pinchuk’s work, the opening stanza is also recited over three different days, across three different theatres of war: a stage which held important cultural resistance during the Siege of Sarajevo; a combat training facility for Ukrainian soldiers that was once used for military exercises during the Bosnian War; and the purported Tomb of Homer on Ios, which casts its view over the sea where the original hostilities of the Iliad took place. Historians have long debated the veracity of Homer’s authorship, pointing to the Balkans to disprove or otherwise minimise the creative hand of Homer by citing traditions of other epic recitation – particularly in Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina, where poems are not credited to any specific authors. Yet, as Ukrainian philosopher Rachel Besplatoff wrote on the eve of war in 1939 in her essay On The Iliad, ‘we do not step into [Homer’s world]; we are [already] there’.

The Theatre of War features an interview between the artist and Ukrainian curator and art historian Lilia Kudelia.

168 pages, 16 x 24 cm, section-sewn softcover with fold-out dust jacket, Perimeter Editions (Melbourne).