Time based work is the main activity of The Red Earth Society, which however continues to search for, find, collect and document red earth, from whence The Red Earth Society’s name derives.
Initiated in Iceland in 2010 during an artist-in-residency programme, the Society was profoundly immersed in the folklore of that island from its very foundation, an interest that has subsequently grown to include research into folklore, superstition, and popular belief, gathered from diverse cultures, as well as sources based in diverse eras. The Red Earth Society’s work in folklore touches on many themes tabooed in many societies, such as the Evil Eye, and Witchcraft.
The Society’s work is also space/place based: performances have been documented in Iceland, Switzerland, Haiti, Zambia, Italy, Mexico. The change of space/place influences the work.
An online digital archive of the process is kept, in the form of a blog, including documentation of the work and the research that is its foundation. New technology is used only as a means of diffusion, not of production. The production is indeed very elementary, which is unusual for this time where technology seeps into every aspect of life, and very much so, into art production.
Part of the research brings the Society in direct contact with anthropologists and folklorists in various countries.
The Red Earth Society takes interest in the meaning and impact of culturally diverse folkloristic aspects when interpreted by someone not directly pertaining to that culture. To these means, the Society aims to establish dialogue, where possible with people directly related to the culture in question.
The Red Earth Society is an ongoing art project by Gordana Bezanov MA, reflecting the artists own multicultural background and interests.
Gordana Bezanov, MA in Fine Art: Painting from Wimbledon College of Art, London, is an artist from Zambia, living and working in Switzerland. She has attended the Skaftfell Center for Visual Art Artists Residency, Seydisfjorður (Iceland); Information and Presentation, with Ai Wei Wei, Internationale Sommerakademie der bildenden Kunst, Hallein (Austria); Media in Flux, with Geoffrey Hendriks, Internationale Sommerakademie der bildenden Kunst, Salzburg (Austria); and Lesheba Workshop: Artist Residency, with Rose Shakinovsky and Claire Gavronsky, Johannesburg and the Venda province (South Africa).
She is co-founder of Number_5 GmbH, platform for architecture and art, Villnachern, Switzerland; and founder, editor-in-chief of ArtSEEN journal, an artist run publishing project in English and Italian, Florence, Italy, and London, UK (2005-2007).
Her work has been exhibited in the UK, Germany, Austria, Iceland, Italy, Sweden, Australia and the USA.