Danica Jojich, MFA, BFA
Associate Professor, Sculpture, Studio Arts
Danica Jojich dedicates her works to people she cares for, introducing a very personal narrative into each installation. She uses common, everyday objects like clothes racks, pillows, newspapers, linen, and felt to present socio-political topics within a context familiar to the viewer. Despite the comfortable atmosphere created by "home-made" objects, Jojich asks the viewer to examine the way they look and understand these objects. Larger issues such as family, immigration, war and feminism can be found embedded in her manipulation of this material. The personal speaks of the political in her art. In her wearable pieces, from her Armed to be Allowed (1990) series, the domestic narrative is purposely interwoven with the political one, opening up unlimited identifications and associations both private and public. Arms Control, for example, represents the military arms race, Shake examines marriage, Cold War politics, feminism, and conflict, and Brace reflects feminism, gender issues, and cultural assumptions. The newspaper photographs accompanying each piece represent the media's presence in every home conveying images and ideas about global events. They are cropped into smaller sections in order to allow the viewer to see each part of the image in greater detail. In her work To Honour (1994), Jojich uses a bronze condom to represent AIDS-related deaths. The piece acts as a memorial while demonstrating that the condom, designed to save and protect people, can do nothing more than remind the viewer of their loss. The frustration and futility of this "token, kept close at hand, to caress" (Jojich, 1994) becomes clear when the viewer is left rubbing a cold piece of bronze rather than the soft flesh of a loved one. Jojich's Marble Pillows (1995-1996) series stems from the loss of her father and her grieving process while also dealing with narratives such as death, cultural heritage, religion, a sense of place, and disease. One of the components of this installation is a photograph, affixed to a clothes drying rack, of the artist resting her head on a carved marble pillow located in the cemetery next to her father's headstone. A marble pillow appears adjacent to this photograph, enabling the viewer to lay their head on the stone as a means of mirroring the artist. Jojich invites the viewer to partake in mourning, by bringing their own experiences of loss to the art work. A video camera close to the furniture records people who wish to add their stories to this installation. At the end of the week these stories were added to the initial video tape. This video incorporated footage of the artist speaking about the loss of her father, the birth of her daughter Una as well as allusions to Serbian culture and the war in Bosnia. In addition to her artwork, Jojich has taught at the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design (1980-82, 1989) at the University of Guelph (1988) and Concordia University (1989-present). In 1990 she curated Depotheque, a show of eleven installation artists in a Montréal warehouse.
BFA University of Western, 1980
MFA Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, 1982
Area of expertise