VIP - VideoChannel Interview Project

Nicolic, Dragana

Dragana Nicolic
Serbian videomaker


Interview: 10 questions

1. Tell me something about your life and the educational background

I was born in Aleksinac, Serbia, graduated on the Academy of Arts, and now living and working in Belgrade, Serbia. I work as a graphic designer, illustrator, also, in the field of video art and short experimental film.

2. When, how and why started you filming?

Around 2009. It was an alternate way to present my poetry for some occasion, since I didn’t want to read it. I was going through some crisis, my work as a designer wasn’t enough to express myself and this was a helpful option, something new to try, and it interested me so much that I continued working in this field.

3. What kinds of topics have your films?

It started as autobiographical pieces with my poetry and self analysis, cleaning and cathartic, later on the experiments with other people’s (friends) poetry, poetry language, visual poetry.

4. How do you develop your films, do you follow certain principles, styles etc?

At start, it was very short, improvisational, but later, I was working more on it, developing ideas. Now I read literature about filmmaking and try to learn more. I like the non narrative, non linear style in filmmaking. Surrealism, experiments, I am also interested in the film history, the beginnings.

5. Tell me something about the technical equipment you use.

Digital cameras. I started first with my Canon Powershot S5 IS. I think that the it is not very important if you have to do something, to say something, you can do it with a very limited equipment, today it is very easy.

6. These days digital technology is dominating also video as a medium. In which way the digital aspect is entering the creation of your videos, technologically and/or conceptually?

Digital technology is making everything easier and faster to use, to make, to finish. Technologically, it is unavoidable. But I don’t like it to be present in my work, I like it simple, minimalistic.

7. How do you finance your films?

Mostly by my myself.

8. Do you work individually as a video artist/film maker or do you work in a team?
if you have experience in both, what is the difference, what do you prefer?

At the beginning I was working individually, from filming to editing, but my last short film I did together with my friend poet Siniša Stojanović Sinister which was great experience. Now I am working on a new project in a small team, and I find it as much better option, to gather people who share your vision and ideas.

9. Who or what has a lasting influence on your film/video making?

I’m not really sure, there are many things. Art education, literature, film, my friends, poets and performers, many artists whose work I had a chance to see and admire, like Bill Viola, Marina Abramovic, Želimir Žilnik, Jean Cocteau, Wim Wenders, Jean-Luc Godard, Abbas Kiarostami, Nietzche…

10. What are your future plans or dreams as a film/video maker?

I would like to stay in the field of short film and video art, and to work on documentary film in the future. And I hope to some financial support that would allow me to stay independent in what I do.

Can works of yours viewed online besides on the CologneOFF platform? Where?
List some links & resources

Dragana Nikolić graduated on the Academy of Arts, Novi Sad, Serbia, Graphic design department. Member of ULUPUDS (The Association of Applied Arts Artists and Designers of Serbia). Works as a designer and illustrator. Also, she works in the field of video art and short experimental film. Lives in Belgrade, Serbia.

Film Festivals, Screenings:
2014. – Filmski Front, Novi Sad, Serbia
2014. – Brave New World, Institut für Alles Mögliche, Berlin, Germany
2014. – Tuzla Film Festival, Bosnia and Herzegovina, 2014.
2014. – VREVA – Ulični festival aktivizma (Street Activism Festival), Belgrade Serbia
2014. – Radical Democracy: European Video Challenge
2014. – CologneOFF X 10th International Videoart Festival
2014. – Brave New World, Institut für Alles Mögliche, Berlin, Germany
2013. – Femix Festival, Belgrade, Serbia
2013. – Vaasa LittFest, Vaasa, Finland
2013. – Balkans Beyond Borders Short Film Festival, Bucharest, Romania
2013. – CologneOFF IX International Videoart Festival
2013. – Timishort Film Festival, Romania
2013. – Video Festival Natures 10, Ljubljana, Slovenia
2012. – Clermont-Ferrand Film Festival, France
2011. – 9th International Festival Signes de Nuit, Paris, France
2011. – Belgrade Documentary and Short Film Festival, Serbia
2011. – Alternative Film and Video Festival, Belgrade, Serbia
2011. – Exit Festival, Novi Sad, Serbia
2011. – Belgrade Poetry and Book Festival, Serbia
2011. – Femix Festival, Belgrade, Serbia

2014. – Tuzla Film Festival Award (with SiniÅ¡a Stojanović)