LINDA DUVALL Visual and Media Artist








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Balkan 'Likes'


In this project Duvall initiates a conversation about the complexity of developing public projects in environments that are outside of one’s familiar context and knowledge base. The challenge is to be respectful to the social and political framework with which one is engaging while positioning oneself clearly.

Duvall developed the project Balkan Likes in order to make visible her responses to this complex cultural environment.

Duvall used the Internet thumbs up icon on a flag, and then placing them in spots that she particularly noticed.Travelling in countries with many different languages besides English, she looked for a widely understood symbol that could convey her observations and responses in a respectful way. This grew out of her concern that by planting crocuses she was only paying attention to places that needed a metaphorical lift. She also liked the physicality of the Like sign – the possibility that someone might take it home and plant it somewhere else. The flag is an object that goes out into the world and has its own life.

This project grew out of a residency in eastern Slovenia, in which Duvall was paired with an artist from Belgrade. They had many conversations about peoples’ complicated responses to his country’s gnarled history. Duvall recognized the necessity of not assuming any real understanding of the history of any of the Balkan countries. She wanted a way to acknowledge her presence and her pair of eyes, but without imposing judgments.