START POINT PRIZE – Prize for emerging artists

Jon Derganc

A series of eleven photographs almost all bearing the same motif depicts the karst shafts of Slovenia, locally called brezna. These dark depressions into the heart of the country seem foreboding, and this was the artist’s intention. His work refers to the historical events which occurred after the end of World War II. Communist partisans here executed over eleven thousand members of the Slovene Home Guard, an anti-communist collaborationist organisation they had fought during the war. Brezna served as mass graves, and in some cases people were thrown into the graves still alive. This heated subject was off-limits in communist Yugoslavia. Only following the establishment of an independent Slovene state were digs conducted and the remains of those murdered were exhumed and given a proper burial. The artist selected eleven photographs (with more gradually added) which, in a stark, minimalist installation without any commentary, offer poignant testimony of the depth and scope of the tragedy connected with these sites. (Marcel Fišer)

Studies: 2005-2012 Academy of Fine Art and Design in Ljubljana (painting). 2009 National College of Art and Design, Dublin (Ireland); 2012 - MFA course at Rabindra Bharati University (Printmaking), Kolkata (India).