Milena Kosec (Honorary resident), Slovenia

Residency Period: 1 October 2013 - 31 October 2015


Bio

Milena Kosec was born in January 1947 in Ljubljana (Slovenia, EU), where she has lived and worked her entire life.  In 1974 she graduated in technical mathematics at  Ljubljana University.  In 1971 she started her first job at the Jožef Stefan Institute. She planned and led the elaboration of new applications for different fields in different companies, usually by means of the most current computer technology.  By the end of year 2002 she was retired. In the years between1975 to 1983 she primarily devoted herself to her family.

Her artistic work began spontaneously with her first work “Državica Ptičjestrašilna” (The Pocket-size State of Scarecrows) in 1992.  After that, she performed several public actions which commented on events in Slovenia intertwined with her own intimate stories.  In  2007 she decided that she would no longer produce anything material-based nor document her work.  In 2008 she was invited to the European Contemporary Art Biennial MANIFESTA7, with one of her immaterial projects Random Private Conversations.

URL: www.3via.org/MilenaKosec


On-hiatus Proposal Summary

After her last art action in 2012, Milena read a lot about the situation in her country and the world in general.  Bewildered by the vast and contradictory information available and the number of the contemporary artists with similar practice, she became unsure if her critical approach to art was still relevant.  This has made her stop her art practice and return to the question: “what are the basic needs for life?”  Having “water and food” as her answer to this question, she decided to improve her knowledge on them through manual work and organic gardening.  Her first attempt at gardening this past year made her realize that she needed more education about various aspects of organic gardening.

During her 2nd year at RFAOH, she will continue to educate herself on this front while she may report some other related on-hiatus activities throughout the year. She feels that this on-hiatus activity may be helpful for her art practice in the future.


Final Report

To be an honorary resident was even more liberating than to be a normal resident. I enjoyed in gardening without thinking what would be important to write for residence page. I am grateful to Shinobu and Matt for opportunity in which I was connected with other residents one year more. To be without any obligation was wonderful feeling.

The last year of the residency I improved my knowledge about gardening through every day practice. It was important that I have enough time for working in garden and cooking fresh vegetable every day. As I had enough different vegetables I ate much healthier. The final consequence of all together is strong improvement of my health (much less problems with chronic diseases).

In two years of residency I completely broke with routine of making art. As I had enough time for looking around and thinking I saw or better I felt how quick society is changing. Contemporary art can't adequately follow this changes caused by technology on one hand and hegemonic states on another hand. We as society are not aware at all what is going on. In front of us I see total unknown world which is completely indescribable, which I hardly can even think about. How than can I make comments on it?

My plan for future is gardening and different other activities. As artist I will probably stay on hiatus.


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recent comments

On Nov 2 2015, shinobu commented on Autumnal Pampering: In Japan, too, and my mother told me that when she was little, on the day of full moon in September [...]

On Nov 1 2015, milena kosec commented on Autumnal Pampering: With globalisation we also got the Halloween.I am not happy with this at all because we have another[...]

On Nov 1 2015, shinobu commented on Autumnal Pampering: Thanks for the report, Milena -- what kinds of pumpkins you get ?! There are lots of orange pumpkins[...]

On Oct 4 2015, enrique commented on The Beauties Of The Garden: aah hahaha shinobu ! be prepare if you ever visit mexico, specially oaxaca, but not only there! http[...]

On Oct 4 2015, enrique commented on Summer Holidays (Break and Rest): something like 30 or 40 different plants !! wonderful work (and enjoyment)... un abrazo !![...]


Rainy Weather

July Garden Report

In the beginning of the month sunrise is at 5.15 am and sundown at 20.57 pm. At the end of the month a day is 14.42 hours long. It keeps raining all month. Average temperatures are from 15C in the morning to 25C through day. Last year in July we hadn’t rain at all. It was very hot summer with almost two months long drought. So I can compare harvest weather dependent. Last year eggplants were really good, this year they don’t grow at all. Opposite broccoli is wonderful this year and it was full of diseases last year. I am also more satisfied with beans and peas than last year. Sweet corn is tiny like Twiggy if you remember her. But because rainy weather I have to collect all broad beans, potato, shallot and also spring garlic before time. I have to cut all parsley. Tomato is also completely destroyed. From the rest of plants I pick of all sick leafs every time. I can’t do anything else.

I hope I have succeeded to collect good seeds of winter and spring lettuce, dill, chamomile and some flowers. In the free beds I put new plants: broccoli, kohlrabi, leek, endive, Brussels sprouts and seeds: turnip-cabbage, red beet, Trieste radicchio, lettuce and for better soil white mustard. I am very happy that my friend’s community for exchanging seeds and plants is bigger each month. It is really unbelievable how many close fiends and artists have them own garden in Slovenia.

I clear of weeds and leave it on the beds simultaneously when I pick up harvest. So I have observable less work with gardening. Very good indeed.

Now in the garden I have all vegetables and herbs for good soap without buying any previous prepared additions. New for eating: pumpkin “tonda di Toscana”, curly and leaf kale and first cabbage. 

One recipe for tasteful (hors d’oeuvre) dish:

250g broad beans we cook in salt water and than we slit the skin from each individual bean. We slice through one leek and blanch it. We take one tin of tuna in olive oil or sardines.  Than we mix all together with one spoon of chives (or parsley or both), salt, pepper and few drops of vinegar.

Leave a Comment (2)

milena wrote on Aug 3:

It seems that I only work in garden, pick up harvest, clean it, cook it and eat it, clean dishes, work in garden an so on all days

Matt wrote on Jul 31:

I'm thinking of your garden; and then I'm thinking of your kitchen :)