Summer 2005

State in Time

Understood by those who understand it

Left: Plaque of NSK embassy, Beijing, 1994. Right: Plaque of NSK embassy, Moscow, 1992. 

Self-dubbed “the first global state in the universe”[1] and “the Slovenia of Athens,” the NSK State in Time propounds a belief that “Art is fanaticism that demands diplomacy.“ Issuing sober green-covered passports to anyone who “pledges to participate on a best-effort basis to support the integrity of the NSK state,” the collective exists as “state in time, a state without territory and national borders, a sort of ‘spiritual, virtual state.’” (They note that “the passport can be used creatively, also as an official travel document, ­naturally with a certain hazard to its owner.”)

NSK is a union or federation of five main groups—”the twenty-year-old artists’ collective IRWIN (“The future is the seed of the pasta”); the band Laibach (“Only God can subdue Laibach. People and things never can”); the Novi Kolektivizem or New Collectivism Studio, which provides graphic-design services throughout the NSK State (“Humanist Propaganda”); the Department of Pure and Applied Philosophy (“Our mission is to make Evil lose its nerves”); and the Noordung Cosmokinetic Cabinet—”a theater company named for the Slovene space scientist Herman Potocnik Noordung—”whose One Versus One project opened on 21 April 1995, with restagings planned every ten years until 2045, the first having taken place in 2005. (“The place of those actors who die in the meantime will be taken by a mechanical symbol, their spoken text represented by sounds—”melody for women, rhythm for men. In 2045, these symbols will be shot into zero-gravity space in a capsule. This action is intended to finally abolish mimetic theatre and establish the rule of noncorporeal art.”)

Left: NSK Garda Prague, performance in cooperation with the Czech Army, 2000. Photo Igor Andjelic. Right: NSK Garda Zagreb, performance in cooperation with the Croatian Army, 2000. Photo Igor Andjelic.

“To put it in a nutshell ... NSK is in its structure a simple and yet complex mechanism which makes any precise explanation in a few words practically impossible....Regarding the philosophy—”it may be called untranslatable, which of course means that it is understood by those who understand it ...The NSK State in Time is an abstract organism, a suprematist body, installed in a real social and political space as a sculpture comprising the concrete body warmth, spirit, and work of its members. NSK confers the status of a state not to territory but to mind, whose borders are in a state of flux, in accordance with the movements and changes of its symbolic and physical collective body.”

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