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Koncert Në Vitin 2014
Conny Karlsson Lundgren

“How you cheated us, Oh Zare. How beautiful you are”

During the Albanian totalitarian regime, over 270 feature films were produced within the state-controlled film system Kinostudio. The short film Koncert Në Vitin 2014 restages a fragment of Koncert Në Vitin 1936 (transl. “Concert of 1936”), a feature film made by Saimir Kumbaro in 1978. The original movie can be understood as formulating a subtle yet sharp critique of the Communist system (from) within the system itself.

Inspired by the biography of the soprano Tefta Tashko-Koço (1910–1947), the script follows two travelling, emancipated women—a soprano and a piano player—in their struggles with the local authorities while organizing a public concert in a rural village.

As a catalyst in the narrative arch, the women perform Zare Trëndafile; a well-known love song addressed to a woman. Zare, a feminine coded name, means “dice” in Albanian and also jargon for someone who is easily played with, or bullied. Additionally, it can be another word for a prostitute. Trëntafile refers to the flower rose. The music is part of the Albanian Urban Lyrics tradition made famous in the 1930s by Tashko-Koço.

By way of photographs, material from Albanian National Film Archive, a restaged performance in the decayed “mausoleum” Piramida, starring the young performer Lepurushja of the human rights organization Aleanca LGBT, the connotations and meaning of the song are investigated. The work raises questions on how existing narratives are being used, how these can be reimagined, and how one creates identification and make them one’s own when nothing else is there.

Koncert Në Vitin 2014 was produced during a residency in collaboration with the Albanian organization Aleanca LGBT and the Swedish Unstraight Museum.

Keywords LGBTQ, Characters, Body
Aspect ratio 1.78:1 (16:9)
Prod. format Generic HD-video
Duration 00:06:00
Color Color
Sound Stereo
Year 2014
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About the artist

Conny Karlsson Lundgren

Conny Karlsson Lundgren (b. Västervik) is a visual artist based in Stockholm and Hoby Mosse, Sweden.

With the help of film, text, image, and archival documents, his work traverses the boundaries between social, political, and private identities. Turning to interdisciplinary methods, alternative realities and social agreements are reimagined through experiences, contrapositions, desires, and secret codes. The ephemeral, accidental traces and moments that challenge existing narratives are a reoccurring fascination, with attention to the archive as both carrier of information and a mechanism of control. Karlsson Lundgren holds an MFA from Valand Academy of Fine Arts in Gothenburg, Sweden and participated in the Studio Research Program at Van Eyck Academie in Maastricht, The Netherlands (2014–2015). In recent years his work has been exhibited at Moderna Museet Malmö, Extra City Kunsthal Antwerp, Gothenburg Art Museum, Kunsthal Nikolaj Copenhagen, with solo presentations at Neue Galerie Innsbruck, Haninge Konsthall, and Kalmar Art Museum (both Sweden). Karlsson Lundgren is the Swedish Arts Grants Committee’s International Program (IASPIS) studio grant holder at ISCP in New York City for 2020–2021.