Bojan Babić, Associate Creative Director at McCann Belgrade has recently published his seventh book, the novel “Chaplin’s feet”
How did you come up with the idea for Chaplin’s feet? Did you ever visit the home for elderly citizens?
Yes, by chance I have spent an entire year unwillingly volunteering in a gerontology center. To me, as to many various artists is always interesting boarder lines of life, early childhood, sickness, old age. That’s how the curiosity and a unrepeatable experience that thoroughly changes a man came together in desire to create art.
Do you ever think about your own old ages? How do you see yourself in forty years? Recently we had several funny clips showing how our generation will look like when they’re old (http://www.boredpanda.com/elderly-models-leisurewear-photo-shoot-alex-de-mora/). Do you ever think of us as grandmas and grandpas looking all urban and modern, or will we be more similar to chess-playing crew from Kalemegdan park?
Well, ten years ago that exact chess group from Kalemegdan was probably perceived as youthful and urban, therefore, we also shall be urban and out of place. I don’t have a problem with that. As long as we keep a spark of curiosity towards life and world around us, and will to question everything, I will consider us alive, and afterword…. The world will keep turning after we’re gone. In Zemun, near the river, there is a restaurant “Three sailors” where people of the average age of seventy and even more are gathering. You have musicians playing the appropriate era jazz standards. There aren’t many places where you can find such an authentic atmosphere in dancing, in every touch, in performing the songs. I guess it’s because they don’t know whether it will be their last night out. I wish I never stop having fun. Young people tend to underestimate fun.
Do you ever use something you came up with during advertising brainstorming later on in your literal work? Or maybe the opposite? Or do you like to keep those two apart?
It’s much harder to connect those two than it may seem. I do not particularly try to keep those two apart, nut if I try to recall some example where I used an idea from one sphere to use it in another, I really can’t remember it. Maybe the process is similar, that kind of work to come up with an idea, but the goals and results are completely different.
What are you reading right now? Would tell us about some interesting local or international writers who might be currently unknown to the public, that we should pay attention to?
The writers whose books I read are mostly known to the public, but that doesn’t mean that people really read them. When I have no idea of what would I read, I go back to Flaubert and Proust, the writers known to most people, then Sebald, John Maxwell, Elfriede Jelinek, Herta Miller, DeLillo, whatever poetry comes my way…. Here we don’t have such a culture of reading, especially reading so called non-fiction books, but I can recommend a traveling book I read a month ago, by Margo Reimer called Bucharest, dust and blood.