Milan Ćalović

Spring 2018 Final Project:

Progression of a Construction Site

The final project I made is about a construction site in the canton of Lucerne and it focuses on the unfinished concrete structure that will soon be completed. I returned many times to this construction site and photographed it over the course of a couple of months. This experience of witnessing the changes as the house is being built really was interesting. Often we only see photographs of buildings when they are finished but seldom do you see photographs of buildings while they are being constructed. The raw concrete and all the different elements you can find on a construction site make it worth photographing. I want to also show the details and little things on a construction site that people perhaps might overlook as well as compare the construction site to a work of art in progress. The project is about the aesthetic elements of architecture as well as the process of constructing a house like this. Eventually the building will be finished and no one will remember what it looked like as a construction site, so these pictures also preserve memories and act as a window to seeing what it was like to see it while it was being built.


Spring 2018 Mid-Term Project:

Reflections of the past on the present:

This project focused around the different historical periods Siena went through and how Siena’s past reflects on its present. I decided to depict the different attire of the military and clergy of Siena through different centuries. For the backgrounds I went around Siena and chose various different locations that connected to the figures of the knights, soldiers and priests I drew. An example for a connection I established is that of the medieval soldiers and the fountains, because during the Middle Ages these fountains were always guarded so no one could poison them. I also decided to write a short text alongside each image on the white sheet next to the picture about the particular location in Siena and the person I drew. The project started with an Etruscan because they were the first people to settle in the area of Siena and ended with a Tuscan infantryman because he came from the time period shortly before Italy was formed. The central thought behind doing a project in such a way is the play between past and present, my pictures have been taken in the present day yet they make the viewer think about Siena’s past because of the different figures drawn and printed onto it. The viewers ask themselves,  “Who walked those streets before me?” or “Who maybe controlled Siena at this period of time?” Some figures have a almost ghost-like appearance others are more calm and look like puppets or cartoons. In some pictures figures can be seen in the background while in others not. A common topic is however modern day elements, rather than picking out scenes with no modern lights, vehicles and electric wires I sometimes deliberately left in the picture in order to contrast with the historic figures depicted in the artwork.

Reading response: Unstable Territories:

As the article mentioned people’s perception of territories, borders and boundaries has changed a lot over history. Today we are able to take a car and drive across 5 borders in one day and if you are in the Schengen states you don’t even have to show your passport many times. Back in the day, however, people used to live in one place all their lives and never left their country and never saw borders. It is certainly also true as the article mentions that “territory” in today’s world is not only a term that only refers to a geographical or spatial area but can also be something much more personal and meaningful to someone. Often the word is used when talking about living spaces of animals or the area for example a cat would call its own. Territory often defines the nature of a country. It determines what crops a country can grow, how many natural resources it has, its population density and the makeup of the territory has an influence its national identity. The article raises the question if territory and borders are redundant. Territory and borders may seem irrelevant in an age of borderless regions and multinational corporations that determine the course a country a country takes.  I think that borders are not a redundant thing since there are always separations between certain groups of people. People tend to form their own groups Cultural differences are have become smaller with globalization, people from totally different countries might listen to the same music, wear the same clothing and consume the same products. Looking at it from a context of cultural borders the world has become much smaller but uniting with no clear cultural borders is never achievable. People are very different and it is human nature to group with their kind so borders, be they cultural or political will always exist.


Reading response: Rebecca Solnit:  “The Blue of Distance” & “The Shape of a Walk”:

In “The Blue of Distance” there is the idea of distance and how it is connected to the color blue. It is interesting to consider and think about how both the sky and sea are blue. The author talks about the meaning blue has for her personally and discusses the how we find ourselves in the unknown and examines the color blue and its relationship to desire in a fascinating essay that is both poetic as well as scientific. Blue is my favorite color and I certainly agree that it has meditative qualities, yet I disagree with her on the concept of an unachievable perfect blue. In “The Shape of a Walk” there’s the idea of walking and pilgrimage as both as a social and personal act and walking as a form of rebellion against today’s society. The author discusses how different artists use walking as a subject of their art. It’s exploring how something as simple as walking is that is connected to every everyday act can be seen as art. She focuses on the walk itself rather than its destination or purpose.


Reading Response: Secrets of the Wave Pilots

It is fascinating to think about how the Polynesians and Pacific Islanders could travel over such great distances and find new islands using only the stars and a net with shells on it for navigation. They also only had small ships and rafts, nothing compared to the giant battleships Europeans had at that time. It was fascinating to see how they did it in the article and the true question it raises is, “How necessary is technology?” Technology makes us disconnected from one another but the Marshall Island sailors prove that the real loss is that we are disconnected from the universe. The navigation techniques developed in the Marshall Islands prove that humans have an amazing capability to orient themselves using the stars or landmarks. The whole article made me question the necessity of modern technology to navigate. Of course it’s much more comfortable to look at a GPS map but when you are knowledgeable of the stellar constellations you do not need and navigation system as the Marshall Islanders clearly proved, as well as the vikings.


Reading Response: Alfredo Jaar & Jeffrey Seitz

Art as a tool of social progress and change for the better is discussed many times by artists. The Chilean artist Alfredo Jaar and New Yorker magazine art critic Jerry Saltz disagree however on how effective art is doing that. Saltz uses a much simpler language, not that much “artistic jargon”, to communicate his thoughts and that makes him understandable to a more general audience. The readers of his art criticism don’t have to be experts in art to fully understand his articles. He often says that it is very to discuss issues beyond art through art be they political, social or societal. Alfredo Jaar, who grew up in Chile at the time of dictator Augusto Pinochet often uses his art to convey his political opinions as well as raise awareness about the great issues of our time. A project that impressed me very much was “The Garden of Good and Evil” in which Jaar addresses the abuse and torture of inmates in CIA black sites by creating a beautiful garden but with cages in it mixed amongst trees. The concept is fascinating and it is interesting to think about how art can maybe change things and make the world a better place by raising awareness about injustices and crimes. He also compiled covers of times magazine while the Rwandan Genocide was going on and showed how for a very long time there was nothing about the Genocide in the newspaper. He wrote down under each picture what was happening that date in Rwanda. I am not the biggest fan of politicising art, because often it might lead to art being used as a  tool to push political agendas or ideologies on people, but when the intentions of the artists are to raise awareness of terrible things that are going on and the artist wants to make a change for the better I am for it.


Spring 2018 Luoghi di Fuga booklet project:

For my booklet project I decided to create a notebook that had an front cover to which I attached pieces of an orange peel. The back of the book was made using a lighter to create a more interesting surface. Inside I used several colors and patterns to create a starting page. The reason for using the orange peel is that it fit with the original color of the booklet and that I had those peels lying around anyways so I could easily incorporate them into my project. The smell of the orange peel is still there which adds to the multi sensory experience. Inside I put drawings of maps as well as knights similar to the ones in my midterm project. I also decided to write texts about the subjects in the book in three different languages; Serbian, English, German because those are the languages I speak fluently.


Spring 2018 Intro Unit Project: Tempo Zulu

For the Tempo Zulu Project this year I decided to redesign the streets of Siena using photoshop, this ties in to the road stones that are being altered in Bernardo’s Tempo Zulu Project. It would be more interesting if roads and maybe damaged city corner would have some colors. In Siena specifically you have so much reason to do this because all the contradas have their colors and it would be nice to see them on roads or walls.

Spring 2018 Intro Unit Project: Walk of Destiny

For the Tempo Zulu path assignment I had to go right 3 times and then left 3 times. I spun in Piazza del Campo and walked towards the direction I got. I decided to represent my path topographically and created the map above on Illustrator. I wanted to make it look like a collage and took a screenshot from google earth and turned it black and white using Photoshop. I then drew the path and eventually the black and white patterns. For my project I also wanted to switch the city map and put a world map over my path, not altering the location or size of the path. The result was quite funny, The path started in Nigeria then went over the Central African Republic into West Congo and eventually to a national park, then it made the first turn to the cities of Mwene-Ditu in the Democratic Republic going back to Bangui, the capital of the Central African Republic and even to Cameroon. The Path eventually finished in Tshikapa, Democratic Republic of Congo. The project was interesting to make because the assignment was quite unique in its nature.

Screen shot 2018-02-06 at 4.55.47 PMScreen shot 2018-02-06 at 4.56.06 PM



Infographics on world leaders throughout history:

Fall 2017 Final Project: 

My final project is a game similar to Risk but a little bit different since there is no territory cards but action cards. The name I decided to give to the game was Conquest, since that is all you do in the game and the game’s goal is to eliminate all other players and conquer all territories. The game can have 2-4 players and a player can chose between 4 different colors: Blue, red, black and yellow. The player can also choose from a wide verity of playable nations and places the flag in his capital region. I very much enjoyed designing this game and I also like playing it. The timeline of the game is the 19th century from which you start and then progress further building an empire. Every turn is 5 years but it is really not that important what time you are in. The flags and territories roughly resemble the ones of today. The meaning of the project was to explore the possibility of a board game being art. This is a theme I continuously explored during the semester. In addition to that the project also ties in the theme pf mapping that we explored as a group during the semester. It is very entertaining to play and could already be pitched as a board game idea and professionally printed and sold as a finished board game. The game is also great because right now its Christmas time and I have plenty of time to play it with my family.



Mid-Term Project: 

For my midterm project I decided to do a model of a village or town.I chose that it had to resemble a town in the Andes with green mountains, colorful houses and a river that flows next to it. I started off by buying a lot of glue and acrylic color, then I started using old newspapers to create the shapes of the terrain. When the terrain was done I covered the newspaper with kitchen and toilet paper, ,since it is easier to paint over, eventually I added model houses made out of styrofoam and added trees made out of sponge. The project explored the theme of me making a model of how I would perhaps want a village to look like. This project was really entertaining to work on. In the end I had a 120cm x 80cm 3d model of a village.

Luoghi di Fuga Booklet Project: 

For my Booklet Project I created a collection of either notes or sketches. Since I am really interested in History most of the texts focus on how Siena came to be what it i today. I really enjoyed the project and decided to keep the booklet so I can fill it with more text and more sketches. I am not the greatest in drawing but the point was just to have some illustrations next to the text. I wanted to make this my personal fact book about Siena.

Intro Unit Project: Multi-sensory Materiality

I love mapping and since I do most of my work digitally I decided to go a little bit into video game design by creating a “mod” for a game called Civilization V. The project deals with the question if video games can be seen as art. My Project also had to do with History, since it is an centered around what would have happened if Russia would have descended in another Civil War after the Soviet Union fell apart. There are 5 major factions, In the scenario you play as what is left of the Russian Federation and you have to reconquer all of Russia. You start off with 109 million inhabitants and an army of 750’000 soldiers. The special unit of the Russian Federation are the Spetsnaz and the special building is the state assembly, you also have the special ability of Maskirovka, a subversive infiltration technique helpful to control city states. The player starts off in the year 2011 with almost all of European Russia as well as a bit of the far eastern part, with the big cities of Moscow, St. Petersburg, Volgograd, Yekaterinburg & Yakutsk. The player can either decide to ally with city states in order to destroy the other factions or he can attack some city states and go for total domination. The scenario is available for download on the Civilization steam Workshop for free.

Intro Unit Project: Tempo Zulu

TempoZulu copy

Intro Unit Project: Points of Entry

For my Points of Entry Project I decided to do a little bit of research on Porta Romana and to make a Powerpoint Presentation. I learned a lot of interesting things about the Gate. The gate was not only impressive and beautiful but certainly also kept Siena safe for decades. The gates served as toll posts as well as protection particularly against Siena’s arch enemy Florence. Many times during the history of Siena the walls were expanded but when the plague happened most of the population died and there was enough space within the current city walls. The population even today is not higher than it was during the middle ages therefore there was never a need for Siena to take down their walls to make more space for new houses. The walls are really beautiful and contribute to the atmosphere of the city.


Milan Ćalović, Montenegro and Switzerland

For my first work I selected the cover of a catalogue I created for an artists’ exhibition in a Gallery in Berlin. The Photo on the cover was taken by me as well. I also created a summary of the artist’s Work, included an art critic’s opinion and put the pictures of the artist’s work into the catalog . For my second work I chose a map I created of Europe in the year 1816 that I did in 2016 just to show how much the borders changed since then.