Zoran Naskovski’s “Death in Dallas” at NBK is a vastly unsettling video work made from images of the Kennedy assasination and its surrounding events. Footage of the murders of Kennedy and Oswald, the state funeral, and Johnson’s oath of office made aboard an airplane are accompanied and narrated by a pair of gusle players - Balkan musical performers who sing epic folksongs that document the unwritten history of their culture. Here the song is of a distant American afternoon, and the video sequences follow the song’s fractured and elliptical narrative to render utterly new and alien a set of images that I have known - or thought I knew - as long as I can remember. The experience of “Death in Dallas” is an extended moment of cultural vertigo, one in which a distinctly national memory is read through the filter of a remote society and reinscribed as part of a larger and more ambiguous set of world histories.

- Ed Osborn [Monday, January 27th, 2003]


From the editors