Four point Three
According to the latest data of the Bureau of Statistics, the average net income in the Republic of Serbia in April 2008 was 32.562 dinars.
According to the data of the Bureau of Statistics, the average consumer basket in April 2008 was 30.110 dinars.
Like every other average person in Serbia, this man has a housing issue. When you take the consumer basket out of the average net income you are left with 2452 dinars available for investing into an apartment. An average apartment in Belgrade has 60 square meters and costs 75.000 euros. The monthly installment is about 420 euros for the period of 20 years. To take this type of a loan one needs to have a monthly income of 840 euros. These conditions make it impossible for any man with an average salary to take any sort of housing loan, since it requires a salary larger than the average salary in Serbia. However, if we disregard this fact, what he could buy with his monthly installment of 2.452 dinars is an apartment of 4.3 square meters.
The work Â âFour point threeâ represents an apartment whose square footage was a result of the above-mentioned calculation. It is an installation of an impossible living space that resulted from realistic presuppositions and it asks the questions of condition and price we are paying in this transitional society for the (in)visible progress.
The installation is a Â«living spaceÂ» of an average Serbian citizen at the beginning of the 21st century (dimensions 2 x 2,15 x 2,60 m). Inside this living space you can find all the usual movables (a bed, table, chair, toilet, shower, mobile fridge and a stove...) arranged as the space allows it. You can also find the Â«average monthly needÂ» of supplies inside (a glass of beer, 1l of mineral water, raspberry syrup, 30 packs of cigarettes, 30 potatoes, newspapers bought every third day...).
An average citizen of Serbia, according to the consumer basket of the Ministry of Commerce, drinks one glass of beer a month, a glass of mineral water a week and uses eight pieces of toilet paper a day. He needs only one potato per day, buys newspapers every third day and uses public transport twice a week. The consumer takes care of his hygiene and therefore spends up to three grams of shampoo and four grams of soap per day.
This is the data the ministry uses to calculate the standard of living. Even though everyone can be a judge of how close this statistics is to reality, the government still proudly claims that this concept of consumer basket is almost completely covered by the average salary.
The work âFour point threeâ displays the situation of impossible, translated into the socio-economical system and advertised as the only solution to âall your problemsâ.
Nikola MarkoviÄ was born in 1979 in Kopar, Slovenia. He got his Masterâs Degree in 2008 at the Faculty of Arts in Belgrade under professor Äedomir VasiÄ.
Solo exhibitions include: Of molecule, dog fence and false beaches, Zvono Gallery (2009), New image (with Jamezdin and Nenad KostiÄ), Vinko PerÄiÄ Gallery, Subotica (2009), Agonyst effect, Gallery of Conteporary Art, Smederevo (2008), Drawings, Cultural City Network, Graz (2008), We ainât tired yet sex and death, Dom omladine Gallery, Belgrade (2008), Layer via copy, Gallery of the University Library âSvetozar MarkoviÄâ, Belgrade (2008), Agonyst effect, Gallery of the Faculty of Art, Belgrade (2008), Untitled (with Jamezdin and Dragan ÄorÄeviÄ), Magacin in KraljeviÄa Marka, Belgrade (2007), Untitled No.1, Gallery of the Cultural Centre Studentski grad, Belgrade (2004) Group exhibitions: Aprende serbio en 15 obras, Centro civico universidad, Saragosa (2010), For this exhibition Sofija!, Gallery of the Faculty of Art, Belgrade (2009), RE:RE:Residence Revisited, SKC Gallery, Belgrade (2009), Aprende serbio en 15 obras, Gallery Centro experimental de Arte y Pensamiento, Madrid (2009), Painting Adinfinitum, Gallery of the Faculty of Art, Belgrade (2006). Residential stays: Cultural City Network, Graz (2008), CitÃ© des arts, Pariz, (2005). Awards: production of a work for the Mangelos Prize 2008