20 x 28 cm
Class of 2008 + enveloppe
Risograph print+ photoprints
edition of 200
Class of 2008 collects the graduation portraits of the 26 students who attended the Islamic High School in Zagreb during the academic year of 2007-2008. The publication title generically indicates an unnamed class at a specific moment in time. We rely on the image, and, above all, the sitters’ culture-specific attire, to roughly locate the setting. What makes these images so singular is the fact that the depicted adolescents were enrolled in the only high school for Muslims in the pre-dominantly Christian Croatian society. Most likely due to financial reasons, no other graduating class was ever officially documented up to this date. Miletić consciously favoured the Risograph technique, which is commonly used for high-volume digital printing, photocopying and distribution, and therefore a timely medium to voice and spread ideas on issues of politics, religion and identity. While the inside pages are coated in timeless and objective black-and-white shades, the cover adopts the color green for its centuries-long symbolic association with Islam. Enclosed with the yearbook is a blank envelope containing the current self-portraits of the same persons, which were selected and submitted by the subjects themselves. Printed on high-gloss photo paper and cut in various dimensions, these highly personal, casual and amateurish portraits reveal the degree of formality which determined the memory of the Class of 2008. In a striking contrast, the young women wore, without exception, the traditional hijab for their public image, while most chose to present and represent themselves veilless in the private sphere. (Caroline Dumalin)
Hana Miletić (b.1982) is a Croatian-born photographer and video artist based in Brussels, Belgium. Her work documents, gathers and questions distinctive contemporary phenomena related to cultural identities, often located in the margins of European capitals. Miletić studied art history and archaeology at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel and photography at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts Antwerp. She currently researches and lectures in photography at LUCA School of Arts in Brussels.