press to exit project space

Pocket Phrase Book, research project by the architect Biljana Stefanovska

In the introduction text Yane Calovski, the artistic director of press to exit project space writes:

“While Pocket Phrase Book by Biljana Stefanovska is by many standards a booklet, it challenges the robust idea of language and cultural heritage by making the active process of cultural and linguistic confluence in Republic of Macedonia visible. It manifests Stefanovska’s research into the decoding of urban slang and its historical development in a multilingual social context. By pointing out all the main languages spoken in the country: her native Macedonian, as well as Albanian, Turkish, Serbian, Roma, Vlach (also called ‘Aromanian’ or ‘Arumanian’, structurally similar yet distinct language from Romanian) and English as the international language of preference, the Pocket Phrase Book suggests a fresh discourse on the notion of cultural co-habitation by becoming a useful tool for navigating and understanding of the ever evolving contemporary urban environment. […]
Pocket Phrase Book is not a theoretical study that tackles this issue with a heavy hand. It is, however, an open and logical device in the form of a personalized publication that can help bridging the communication gap among members of various linguistic communities in the Republic of Macedonia. […]”

We are proud that this publication is produced by press to exit project space in the New Project Production Book Series - a series attempting to make visible socially and visually minded research projects that would otherwise go unnoticed.

Biljana Stefanovska is an architect currently working as a visiting lecturer at the Technische Universität Darmstadt's Faculty of Architecture, while completing her dissertation on cultural and climatic aspects in the transformations of housing structures. She has participated in several intercultural projects and workshops as a visiting professor or lecturer, and is the co-author of the book Erfindung Wohnen (Wasmuth Tübingen|Berlin, 2007) on the rethinking of dwelling forms.

The project was supported by the Swiss Cultural Programme in the Western Balkans.

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