OF STREETS AND MONSTERS
25.01 – 17.02 2020 (Opening: 25.01, 19h)
Aleksandr Polyantsev (RU)
Anna Tveritinova (UKR)
Mika Plutitsky (RU)
Mila Raczkowska (PL)
Paulius Šliaupa (LT)
Svetlana Ochkovskaya (BY)
Tyśka Samborska (PL)
Aleksey Naumchik (BY)
Oľga Paštéková (SK)
Zaneta Zukalova (CZ)
Each artist through their personal prism of artistic approach and imagination contemplates about modern mythology, urban legends and interaction with inner monsters in the contemporary context. Perhaps our technologies, hometown backyards, streets and factories create opportunities for new kind of myths and legends to arise, transforming our primal instincts into new forms of creative energy, which manifests itself through minds of the ones expressing it.
Collective exhibition „Of streets and monsters“ is an intimate take on the relationship with the city as a phenomenon of 10 Eastern European visual artists and filmmakers from seven countries (Russia, Ukraine, Poland, Lithuania, Belarus, Slovakia, Czechia). The exhibition comes as a result of OKNA 2019 Art Competition ( https://bit.ly/30oNA9F ) shortlisting the 10 artists. The main winner will be announced during the inauguration with the main prize consisting of a solo exhibition at OKNA Gallery.
Aleksandr Polyantsev (Russia)
“Photographer, observer, explorer.
I love the rhythm of cities, new and old. Observation and participation in the pulse of life of the streets allow you to pulsate my life.”
Anna Tveritinova (Ukraine)
“London-based artist, painter.
City is a live organism that is awake and evolving. Inanimate objects and spaces breathe and exist in their own parallel reality that we can engage with or ignore. It accumulates time with layers of marks and traces of people passing. It can be hostile and unpredictable, but also welcoming with its exciting ever changing presence. It’s full of places where one can linger and notice something new. It provides an artist with inspiration, detail, colour, texture and experience. An artist is an inhabitant, a witness to the life unfolding in the streets and buildings. She sinks into it, becomes a part of it, records, and re-interperts it into a work of art to share what she’s seen with others.”
Mika Plutitsky (Russia)
“Contemporary Russian painter.
The city is a layered space of memory. So many human experiences happen in the city throughout time. Memory is pressed here, so all the cities are actually haunted. A single place can trigger a memory-flow inside you. It’s like a film inside you, it can be a comedy. It can be horror as well. As a person who was born in USSR, I am particularly interested in Soviet architecture. It is partly in decay and at the same time, so many Soviet Modernism buildings still function in Moscow. It is weird that all these buildings continue to transmit the same messages and values which they were supposed to call upon. Even if the ideology they were founded upon doesn’t exist anymore, they still govern people’s bodies, movements, and imaginations. The strange inertion embedded in the city. I think that my art practice is an attempt to rewrite the particular city’s space and to reinterpret it through my own memory and through the layers of contexts. The result is in between reality, my imagination and retro-sci-fi vision.”
Mila Razckowska (Poland)
“Head in the Clouds.
Art is the process or product of deliberately arranging elements in a way that appeals to intellect,sense or emotion. I’m privileged to live and work in such a diverse and cultured city-Manchester, where opportunities arise within a safe creative environment – the sort of environment that helps artists to make their ideas a reality.This is a place with radical mantra, a saying that goes: “This is Manchester,we do things differently here”. Manchester it is a the birthplace of the Industrial Revolution and often joked as a place where it never stops raining (it does, we have sunny days too), Manchester is all beautiful red brick buildings, former cotton mills and canals. It’s one of the most creative cities in the world with a rich cultural heritage to rival any major metropolis.”
Paulius Šliaupa (Lithuania)
“Aware, observer, explorer.
The city is a world of condensed experiences. Many images and layered sounds are passing without us being able to understand or even fully experience them. The best one can do is to feel them and remember that he experiences only a small part of the bigger world seen through a subjective vision. As a painter, I rediscover the poetry of life anew when wandering in the night of the city.”
Svetlana Ochkovskaya (Belarus)
“Artist, mother, strange.
London, for me, means as a phenomenon. As a source of inspiration and exploration. I see my place as an emerging artist in London.”
Tyska Samborska (Poland)
“I, am, (non)human.
City is for me like a board game. It takes a moment to understand the rules, discover places and people’s habits but once you know them, you can really start to play with it. You can string the structure, find blind spots, expose its weaknesses, change the board or leave the game.”
Zaneta Zukalova (Czech Republic)
“Emphemeral terrestrial existence.
“The city is a place of ceaseless transformation. Movement. Yesterday, today and tomorrow. Ahundred of years ago, today, a hundred of years later, perhaps. It is an entity which exists neverthelessof our presence, but that we relate to so closely that it is hard to detach ourselves from any of its aspects. Our attempts to enhance it bring along destructive consequences. Desire for growth turns into decline. For me as an artist, being part of these processes creates an environment that feeds my practice. I am embedded in all the rise and all the decline; so is my practice. In a large and fast paced city such as London, much can pass by unnoticed but at the same time, a lot gets exposed. There are injustices happening every day and every minute all over the world, hence they are so hard to identify and easy to overlook within the information misuse and overflow. I often feel overwhelmed by its density. However, I understand that my role as an artist is to filter and process this data. My practice reflects what has been captured and did not manage to slip through.”
Olga Pastekova (Slovakia)
Night, lover, nature.
I come from Petržalka, city district of Bratislava – capital of Slovakia. It is a labyrinth of tall and grey concrete block houses built during the communist era in the middle of the Danube forests. A concrete jungle has grown in the jungle. Half a million inhabitants, dirt on the sidewalks, human anthill. Quite reverse, I have discovered a night atmosphere, full of lit windows, voices, conflicts and music – the miracle of suburban life. I was fascinated and it gave birth to the first cycle of my urban paintings „Night Walker“.Within the core of my paintings is the notion of a subject that lives in a sophisticated environment such as a city while at the same time there, too exists a strong feeling of unrest resulting from the devastation of flora and fauna. I perceive the state of civilization – I feel inspiration from something that was here before us and will remain long after we are gone, it is something mythological… I love myths, legends, fairy tales, and watch how they evolve from the time I was little. Someone once said that myths can only be narrated by those who have a myth of their own. I hope that within me, I have something like that as well…
Aleksey Naumchik (Belarus)
daily archive, transformation of urban space, sexuality.
After the collapse of the Union, when its former territories began the transition from socialism to capitalism, Minsk won a chance to reconnect with its European past. However, the government’s position of “going our own way” inherited from the Redland constrained the change. Only in last ten years Minsk faced with investment capital and the globalisation processes which were fraught with predictable variation. It is important to me to recording stories of the modern stage of Minsk history for a better understanding of the time of transformation.
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Institutional support: Embaixada da República Checa em Lisboa / Velvyslanectví ČR…, Associação de Amizade Portugal-República Checa / Sdružení…, Ambasada RP w Lizbonie / Embaixada da Polónia em Lisboa.