© sislej xhafa, courtesy of artist

Stock Exchange

ArtistSislej XHAFA
Material/ Techniquevideo
Size/ Duration3 min. 1 sec.
Copyright Notice© sislej xhafa
courtesy of artist
Year of acquisition/ donation2001
DescriptionBorn in Peja, Kosovo (former Yugoslavia) in 1970. Lives and works in New York, USA.

Sislej Xhafa grew up as an Albanian in former Yugoslavia, and is currently based in New York. While his wide-ranging activities cover photography, film, sculpture, installation and performance, he produces many of his works on such themes as immigration and moving, violence and power, prejudice and alienation; all are related to wars and sociopolitical situation in his native country. His style is marked not by direct criticism, but by humor, poetic contents and witty, polished way of expression, so that his works are open to multiple interpretations. He participated in many international exhibitions, and his works are highly recognized.

"Stock Exchange" is his video work in which he performs at a railway station in Ljubljana, Slovenia. The artist dressed in business suit tries to inform of trains’ arrivals and departures with gestures and vocal tones like a stock broker dealing on the stock exchange floor, in front of the timetable where people are coming and going. While the information of destinations and times on the board change one after another, he moves his hands busily and utters words, with a paper notepad in one hand. In Europe in particular, a railway station symbolizes the movements of people beyond national boundaries. By setting a stage at a station, he depicts indirectly the socioeconomic situation in the countries of Eastern Europe where people cannot help but become migrant workers and immigrants under free market economy.