Welles’ haunting exploration of the terror of faceless bureaucracy was set against the city’s Cold War-era Modernist buildings, to which Maljkovic returned to carefully photograph the sites from the same dramatic angles shown in the film. Spliced together from black-and-white negative prints, the resulting unique prints conflate five decades of aesthetic and ideological change.
In some of Maljkovic’s works, sections of austere concrete architecture are seamlessly connected across the disparate photographs, with characters from Welles’ film inhabiting a present urban environment that has gone unchanged in the intervening time. The city’s past, its role as the setting of The Trial, and the reality of its contemporary status all share a single, uncanny frame. In other pieces, in which the buildings in the film have since been remodeled, defaced, or destroyed, Welles’ characters inhabit environments that no longer exist. These works occupy a world that has, over years of political and economic transformation, become outmoded and been erased.