Armando Lulaj

Armando Lulaj

Armando Llulaj Portrait

Armando Lulaj, born in 1980 in Albania, is a writer of plays, texts on risk territory, film author, and producer of conflict images. He has no desire to be subject to the context of local belonging. Rather, he is orientated toward accentuating the border between economical power, fictional democracy and social disparity in a global context.

Exhibitions include the Prague Biennial (2003; 2007), Tirana Biennial (2005), the Albanian Pavilion at the 52nd Venice Biennial (2007), 4th Gothenburg Biennale (2007), and the 6th Berlin Biennial (2010). His project NEVER was featured at the 63rd Berlinale International Film Festival in the section Forum Expanded.

With Public Delivery Exhibition Utopian Days, 2014
Armando Lulaj, Zhang Huan, Installation view, Total Museum of Contemporary Art, Seoul, South Korea
Left: Armando Lulaj, Right: Zhang Huan, Installation view, Total Museum of Contemporary Art, Seoul, South Korea

Utopian Days – Freedom was an exhibition at the Total Museum of Contemporary Art, Seoul, South Korea’s first private art museum. Later it was shown in the same city at the Nowon Culture and Arts Center.

Artists: Adel Abdessemed, Lida Abdul, Phil America, Ivan Argote, Chim↑Pom, Minerva Cuevas, Chto Delat?, Cyprien Gaillard, Yang-Ah Ham, Andre Hemer, Tehching Hsieh, Zhang Huan, Jani Leinonen, Klara Liden, Armando Lulaj, Matt McCormick, Filippo Minelli, Wang Qingsong, Andres Serrano, Manit Sriwanichpoom, Clemens von Wedemeyer, Kacey Wong, Xijing Men, He Yunchang.


Exhibited: Never, 2012

Until recently, one could still perceive the traces of a monumental inscription nearby the Albanian city of Berat: in the 1960s, former dictator Enver Hoxha1 had commissioned the sketching of his first name, Enver, onto the surrounding mountains.

Armando Lulaj – Never, 2012
Armando Lulaj – Never, 2012, video still

With each letter measuring 150m in height, the gigantic ENVER2 remained visible even long after the end of the regime. After a failed attempt in the 1990s to eradicate the then nearly haunted inscription, the letters persisted – eventually giving rise to the project NEVER by Armando Lulaj.

Armando Lulaj, Zhang Huan, Yang-Ah Ham, Total Museum of Contemporary Art, Seoul, South Korea
Armando Lulaj – Never, 2012; Zhang Huan – To Raise the Water Level in a Fishpond, 1997; Yang-Ah Ham – Tourism in Communism, 2005, installation view, Total Museum of Contemporary Art, Seoul, South Korea, 2014

In the summer of 2012, Lulaj succeeded in re-writing the dictator’s former commission, however, implementing a distinct alteration: ENVER became NEVER. In his documentary film of the same title, Lulaj offers a closer glimpse at his laborious re-dedication and the process of (un-) naming the recent past while, in a sense re-enacting the historical incident.

YouTube video
6 min 30 sec

The NEVER-Chart, a diagram the artist developed to accompany the film, suggests further possible layers of meaning and intertwining discourses encompassing the work.

How corruption relates to déjà-vu photography, courage to cannibalism, or land art to Lacan, are only some of the aspects, which will form the basis of a comprehensive publication currently in development at the Jan Van Eyck Akademie.

YouTube video
22 min
Courtesy of: DebatikCenter Film Production
Paolo Maria Deanesi Gallery

Armando Lulaj – Never, 2012, video stills


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