ALTERUM Artist-run network in the CEE region

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Artist-run network in the CEE region


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INTRODUCTION

This publication marks the ending of ALTERUM – a networking project that focused on non-profit, artist-run galleries as increasingly important platforms in the context of contemporary Central and Eastern Europe. ALTERUM was our idea of the other, that generated long-term co-operation between four artist-run/ project-spaces from Prague (35M2), Košice (VUNU), Budapest (MŰTŐ), and Belgrade (U10), brought together under the umbrella of the International Visegrad Fund. The manifestation of this need to build infrastructure for regional DIY culture ranged from endless conversations, research, and podcasts, to the realisation of four international exhibitions that took place in our spaces. The end of this phase simultaneously marks the beginning of a yet barely visible, expanding web of common visions in our region. Through curatorial texts and theoretic essays, exhibition documentation and the regional space index Befriending Endless, the book at hand is an attempt to preserve, convey, and contextualize some of what the greater community of four DIY spaces and some 40 artists, curators, writers, and theorists have created over the course of the last year and a half. It’s a collection of traces from the past as well as notes for and from the future, kaleidoscopic and fragmented in its nature, just as the DIY culture in our very special region.


CONTENTS

6-12 PREFACE Befriending Endless – Preface for a void supreme – Ráhel Anna Molnár

13-36 RS U10 introduction + Misleading projectiles Misleading projectiles – On the Generative Nobody and Speculating Nothing – Darko Vukić + index of other initiatives

37-52 CZ

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35m2 introduction + Travelling Gallery At Home with Xenia – Notes on Hospitality – Vít Bohal + index of other initiatives

53-68 HU MŰTŐ introduction + Please, Mind the Gap! Death and DIY – a political paradigm for anti-capitalist ontologies – Sonja Teszler + index of other initiatives

69-86 SK VUNU introduction + Flowers & Monsters Some remarks on the (im)possibilities of artist-run spaces in Slovakia – Miroslava Urbanová + index of other initiatives

88-95 PARTICIPANTS 96 IMPRINT


BE FRIE NDING E NDLESS. Preface for a void supreme

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Ráhel Anna Molnár The very idea of what we still name Eastern Europe has been shaping and re-shaping itself through a multitude of hallucinations, forming through geographical and -political, virtual and temporal phantasms that have eventually created the very phantom we, in this specific space and time, can call our own. This persona (let’s make her female) is constantly mutating, free-falling graciously “into the dreads of the abyss”.[1] Always becoming and never accomplishing, never stopping for a second in her hysterical search for every new turn she can possibly take. She’s enticing and intriguing, irresistibly urging us to define her edges while in reality, she has none. For she „cannot be talked about, only talked to”.[2] But how do you talk to a friend you’ve always had, who has simultaneously been too distant to touch and too close to see? How do you approach someone who is so dense in your imagination, yet presents only as a holographic ghost in actual space and time? And (maybe most importantly), how do you peel back the layers of narrow academism and dissolve the need to define, to understand and categorise her – and so, yourself?

[3]

[1]

Petrică Mogoș: The Age of Nothingness, In.: KAJET no2 – ON UTOPIAS, Petrică Mogoș & Laura Naum (Ed.), KAJET, 2018. [2]

We started to think about these questions and the persona behind them with the Budapest-based group Műtő in the spring of 2019. We wanted to extend our own local workings by creating a channel to explore and connect artist-run spaces and their actors in Prague, Košice, Budapest and Belgrade. Say, to expand our friendshipin-work, and then let it flood across the borders that separate us. From our “thinking business”[3] with 35M2, VUNU and U10 artspace, ALTERUM, an East-European network of artist-run spaces, attitudes, practices and communities, was born, and has been in motion ever since. It’s been a “co-operative project supported by the International Visegrad Fund” but, if I may say so, on a more realistic scale it’s been a labyrinth of befriending people and understanding their visions, struggles, treasures, and realities, and we’ve spent a long time together in this search for our “words and deeds”.[4] I.e., identifying the many specific core characteristics of DIY, artist-run, and underground cultures, that go beyond (the idea of) “Eastern Europe” (sensed as a vast concrete yet invisible presence), so that together we might actually be able to approach her through ourselves. In this quest, the allegorical figures of love, desire, struggle and distance naturally joined us for a feast. Invisible figures all too familiar for those of us living and working in DIY communities, who follow us daily in their silence.

Maurice Blanchot: Friendship. Stanford University Press, 1997.

PREFACE - RÁHEL ANNA MOLNÁR - BEFRIENDING ENDLESS

Hannah Arends term that refers to friendship

[4] Celine Condoreeli: Too Close To See: Notes on Friendship. A conversation with Johan Frederik Hartle, In.: Self-Organised, Stine Hebert & Anne Szefer Karlsen (Ed.), Open Editions, 2013.


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I’m not talking about the obvious, external distance, measurable in the inches and kilometres between us, but the one that constitutes the very engine that keeps us running: the “infinite distance, the fundamental separation on the basis of which what separates becomes relation”.[5] A distance not only limitless but inherent, stretching a “spaceless and timeless dent”[6] wider and wider with each and every act, every exhibition and event, every bit of excitement over an idea. A constantly becoming, growing void between us and what we imagine, inviting us to kindly fall right into it. And the more spacious it gets, the more passion we are fueled with. Distance in the DIY culture is a very shared particle, creating the void from which passion freely bounces back and forth. That said, for this project we wanted to be for once, close to one another – at least in the physical realm. Within the nets and nodes of ALTERUM this fragment, the common molecule that once was so poetic has become too painfully real. It has morphed, shrunk, and expanded in relation to time, to the sneaky or shockingly clearly conditioned bodies – whether it be the Visegrad Fund itself or a year spent trapped inside the mouth of a pandemic that hit us right after our first and only meeting which occurred on Valentine’s Day 2020 – and our very struggle to adapt without taming or being tamed. Compared to what we envisioned in the very beginning, the only actually stable element in our venture of befriending one another, happened to be love. [5]

It is the kind of love that Elke Krasny talks about a lot, a labour of love, as she calls it. This is the kind of love that one cannot live on nor can live without. But it’s not to be confused with mere unpaid labour either, for „there is desire in labour of love, an economy of desire, you could say”.[7] And with that, hand-in-hand with an economy of struggle. Krasny goes further and claims that these notions, which have already been swallowed by accelerated neoliberal capitalism, need to be reclaimed and re-articulated so that they can behave as blocks of collective organisational models, where all kinds of capital is shared – including the desire and the struggle that all of this entails. This desire is not quite emotion and not yet thought, but is rather a guest. Someone who (parallel to one who disarms us, makes us naked in front of the fires of capitalist economic norms) keeps us drawn to the abyss, befriending endlessly in an ever turbulent vertigo that’s constantly arriving, making any form of closure inconceivable for its host(s). If this guest (or any of them) were ever invited at all to begin with, I’m not sure. Anyhow, while the common conception of self-organised, DIY culture is the presumption of desire to change the status quo by filling a void – the reality is quite the opposite. Desire here, in this spacious community that we can, perhaps, actually call our home, is really only for the other to exist, for „this relation without dependence,

Maurice Blanchot: Friendship. Stanford University Press, 1997.

[6]

Petrica Mogos: The Age of Nothingness, In.: KAJET no2 – ON UTOPIAS, Petrică Mogoș & Laura Naum (Ed.), KAJET, 2018. PREFACE - RÁHEL ANNA MOLNÁR - BEFRIENDING ENDLESS

[7] Natalia Yeromenko: Interview with Elke Krasny – Labour of Love. In.: KAJET digital.


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without episode, yet into which all of the simplicity of life enters”.[8] A struggle with, and for the other’s otherness, our host and guest, who we own so obviously, yet we still don’t quite yet, and probably never will, be able to call by name.

[8]

Maurice Blanchot: Friendship. Stanford University Press, 1997.

PREFACE - RÁHEL ANNA MOLNÁR - BEFRIENDING ENDLESS



U10

u10.rs

MISLEADING PROJECTILES

Kralja Milana 10 (entrance from Kosovke devojke 3) 11000 Belgrade

On the Generative Nobody and Speculating Nothing

MEMBERS Founding members: Lidija Delić, Nina Ivanović, Sava Knežević, Isidora Krstić, Iva Kuzmanović, Nemanja Nikolić, Marija Šević Current members: Lidija Delić, Nina Ivanović, Sava Knežević, Isidora Krstić, Iva Kuzmanović, Nemanja Nikolić, Marija Šević, Sanda Kalebić

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Year Established: 2012 U10 is an independent, artist-run collective and art space dedicated to promoting and nurturing young and emerging contemporary art. It actively works on creating a culture of artistic education, debate and exchange between artists, curators, theoreticians, writers, and the public at-large. The focus of the program is to present both solo and group shows of mainly young artists from Serbia and the region, with several slots per year dedicated to international projects whose concepts are aimed at creating active exchange and collaboration with local artists and the local art scene.

07-13/06/2021 U10, Belgrade Exhibiting artists: Pavle Banović (RS), Mate Elod Janky (HU), Inka Karčakova (SK), Aleks Selmeci and Tomaš Kocka Jusko (SK), Šimon Sýkora (CZ), Maks Vajt (CZ), Ádám Varga (HU), Vanja Žunić (RS) Curated by Darko Vukić 1 → To outdraw the introduction… ‘The kill-chain can be thought of as a dispersed and distributed apparatus, a congeries of actors, objects, practices, discourses and affects, that entrains the people who are made part of it and constitutes them as particular kinds of subjects.’ [1] … one has to think about where the fired shots end up making black holes. And black holes are virtual features, nothing other than hole-complicated portals into everything or anything that is truer than an algorithm unless a metaphor is permitted. Nothing here is more important than anything else -elsewhere. Conceptual powers and human expectations, we may not have known this in vain, will eventually be saturated by nonsense. Make sure you are on the other side of this page-event. The event-as-incident continues to unfold, while still your presence occurs where there is no knowledge. Could we think in the negative, and so associate war terminology with that of the world, or perhaps worlds of art? How much are the aftermaths of isolation and regional ‘bloc’ divisions of our ever[1]

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From a View to a Kill; Drones and Late Modern War, Derek Gregory


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becoming Eastern European contextual grids, actually factual and prone to be rendered reasonably in our cross-generational coordinates of vantage & vanishing points? Points as predicated in terms of war-vision or the vision of war technology at a long-distance range. And how much is this actually a fictitious and blindfolded abstraction of the relative traditions that these zones share? The exhibition does not allow answers to such questions; however, they resonate within the generic scope of language patterns, through poetical lenses and conceptual categories of inter-national-medial (re)presentations and their assemblies – which shatter expected notions of these precisely imaginary boundaries, overcoming the initial question. Misleading projectiles at-large are attempts to point out via a holistic and multi-modal curatorial approach, the procedural conceptualization of the betraying performances within interspace, battling the local and global gluing, that which suspends the postpandemic ‘ballistic’ art world. Global and local notions are becoming indeterminable from the viewpoint of individual perspectives, encompassing the momentum of problematic and permanent transformation, which has been attributed to the corpus of art discourse and approached with the utmost cynicism in terms of a sense of certainty, and, at the same time, of the continual betrayal of proclamations of the end -trends. Therefore, this diagrammatic construct invokes inevitable conditioning for grasping the historical as the actual, the effect value with a twist. Within the contained set of works in the exhibition, a probe of the 21st century model of toy aesthetics is deployed as a vector for the spatial – becoming – computational and reflective interface, hence a flex-glossary is activated by various rocketing points towards a sense of the thing, or a sense of being completely external to the content: the local as well as this regional project, projectile via an alternative axle: alterum, to alter, altéré. A cognitive mash-up of the gallery space, white cube to black-box, opens up the artworks to their internal RS - EXHIBITION - BELGRADE - U10 - MISLEADING PROJECTILES

compatibility and the spaces’ conflicting externality, so that conflictual entities such as the object and the subject (objectiles or subjectiles), this affective contact point at any level, serves as a possible entrance point for navigating through the diagram, across the threshold of the idea, and the necessity of its overcoming. By default, it’s a figure of a swerving border line, intrinsically disturbed or unevenly distributed throughout. As for this exhibition and its variable accompanying program, we could conclude with the following (later altered) question. To what extent is the conception of this project – rather a contextualization of its conditions as a future of chance and outcomes – the working of a purely administrative (project) ideology? Through all sorts of lexical arbitrariness of specific language usage-stats: in arts, markets and their cluster-consuming socialites, all being some sort of a manifest discipline as contemporary practice dependent on transition, which is currently taking place. Continued on page 28


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MISLEADING PROJECTILES On the Generative Nobody and Speculating Nothing 1 → Entering the space of now-end-here

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Continued from page 17 To untangle this dense, cascading introduction, we have to trace our points of entrance into paradigmatic explanatory structure via diagrammatic thread; meaning, to further un-box the contexts that this exhibition text is probing. Let’s just imagine the Hegelian end of historicity as our momentum, and since we are unable to switch to the self as chronology as opposed to nature, we are stuck in the state of a so-called paradoxical membrane. In the sense of ethics, in-here, ours is being devoured by the gestural Christian wormhole agencies, the dubious cavities of dialectical poly-lemmas of the everyday – known in psychoanalysis as something like frozen larval subjects, or that which is being considered a subject with a disabled sub-stratum, or the ever subjectile nature of being. This eventuates a possible narrow path destined as the contingent character of the entrance point, ontologically not differing from the point of vanishing or the point of exit. It is becoming evident so far that this text is also a demonstration of a multi-layered stack as a whim of the environment we inhabit, and so reflecting it is what we contain throughout it. And so, having in mind terms from many stages embedded in this project and thus embodying these features, namely to enter or exit the point of a contingent, parallax state, we are switching in scale from being concrete – abstract, mixing up the local axis with the global stance. Being able to witness our knotted entanglements and affairs, we may have a chance to realize and enable them as sensitivities towards our interventions, to drift the course of currents in the environmental locus of the aforementioned nodes. As a closure to the instalment, for a given primacy of the exemplary function over (re) RS - ESSAY - DARKO VUKIC - MISLEADING PROJECTILES

presentative; a diagram, is proposed as a spatial rendering, a topographical space of relations applicable to the experiential grids we feed-back into our surroundings. In the midst of accidental mega-structures, new juvenile generations of bodies operate regardless of the state of unknowing themselves. Meaning: if you do not match this body, as nobody, you cannot match the arrangements of history. The denseness of this language is hence the denseness of its apprehension of the reality it withstands. This co-production of new questions is in the manner of Wittgenstein’s and Benjamin’s notions of, on the one hand, the status of the world as perceptiveness, and on the other, concerns over the status of the objects (of art) in the midst of ongoing issues as spectacles – if we may designate them as such – of war, flatness, terraforming, extinction, NFT’s, gateways, abrupt shifts, killer drones, autonomy, AI, GAI and a platitude of emerging accompanying phraseology in hyper flux. No theory is chick enough to satisfy our pre-emptive horizontal incapacity for reason. Since we still fail through misconceptions of concepts in polarities as: the analogue versus digital[1], virtual versus real etc. we may notice already that this misleading or failing figure is prone to the structure of the text in its attempt to establish or localize the terms for the constitution of subjectile and objectile -projectiles intertwining so forth. It is to ask, what is that which fuels our core drive, that which is navigating the landscape where when is rather than what. 2 → Function hyphen- or else- an exit- the outsideness ‘But how much more pleasant was the sensation of being a missile without provenance of target, caught up in [1]

In Art, the digital/analog division became a Culture War, with bizarre patriotism on both sides, each developing parallel theoretical discourses, conference circuits, journals, relations with or hostilities toward other disciplines within the academy, etc. […] There was real cultural capital at stake for the cultivation and weaponization of both Analog Pastoralism and Digital Millenarianism and/or Successionism. [http://dismagazine.com/discussion/73272/benjamin-bratton-machine-vision/]


a tumult of non-newtonian motion. So pleasant that pleasant was not the word.’ [2]

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Many will succeed and recoup from the aftermath while many will only mourn the old world of cruelty due to the collapse, right after the upgrading taking place now, and precisely via the pre-established rules of the other level of becoming i.e., coming into being of this new world. So how do we approach this need for exit, or at least the ‘outside-ness’ it entails? The closest example is a black hole which sinks through and out, as a pupil, an eye, a focal instrument or tool of desire that curates the manifesting image features across life’s pace, a grid-like system where all disturbances are vortexes that wrap a certain collided area of the grid. This posturing is surely a neologism, namely a graph-ontology. As a speculative topographical space, it entails performative functions and paradigms, that is to say, certain regimes and technologies: to work on a concept is to vary its extension and comprehension, to generalize it through the incorporation of exceptional traits, to export it beyond its region of origin, to take it as a model or inversely, to search for a model for it - in short, to progressively confer upon it, through regulated transformations, the function of a form.[3]

3 → Grids & wrappings ‘In the end there will be no end / Just open-ended suggestion’ [4] … or just the right to subsist. Alternative to what? It’s not just that this kind of exhibition making is always too late and consequently artificial, it is also becoming obsolete, configured by a backdrop of social struggles and relations between classes that are being imprinted in the structure of artworks (historically). In a Landian frame, whose alignment of appearance as sensory [2] [3] [4]

Murphy, Samuel Beckett Concept and Form, Volume 1: Selections from the Cahiers Pour L’Analyse Kode9 & the Spaceape, Memories of the Future (2006)

RS - ESSAY - DARKO VUKIC - MISLEADING PROJECTILES

& symbolic impact is resulting from a complex dynamic of projections (in stacks), hence suggesting it is inevitably transparent, limiting logic, the sense of the self wrapped by the substitute of gridding. The dead end of avant-garde delivers an abrupt number of citizens for which no-thing will be contained in/by time. If one is without the capacity of being a tool at hand, the tool of the being henceforth is subject to the humiliation of time wasted in a world of non-generative functions. The machine-vision of a tool-being as sampled historically through the shaping of a bone missile or a stone projectile, the naive physics of prehistoric defense has been uncovered and advanced, via forensics, into the latest nuclear heuristics. The dices are trown and a cisgender apolitical ant-empire hay-o-feminism is without time, only its ambition flourishes at the states’ capacity of the un-cooling curatorial eye and a silver tongue of unprecedented cunning of the contingent and generative gambling via sequences of assembled vectors with hinged vortexes. Have we now reached the nonsensical vanishing point of text, or as Brassier would address by just naming that which is being addressed as: the genre is obsolete? This persuasion that is winning over the language-gameplay of toy aesthetics implies a sort of a cognitive model of art & its works which are engaging in philosophical vantage points, probing the onto-episteme-logical concomitants to some art phenomena entangled in a joint. The artworks are eventual events (even-ting) as also the constituencies of the world coming to an end, the real and immanent constructs, as counterfactuals shared by the subjectiles and objectiles. The choices cast by the dice are the misleading projectiles of why, and where are those choices actually culminating in a universal force? The dice has been thrown by a looking glass entity, randomized already by suddenness […] Physical phenomena generally take the most optimal route of motion. To a blown projectile, its orientation is self-parallel, or so to say self-referential. To kill its complicity and intensity while domesticating it into the pattern of motion


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and action, both effectuating the projectile as a dispersive particle in speculative space which avoids reason. The end of the artist was an inevitable proclamation, as a suicide through a massive multiplicity. As Salemy sets forth: the final kick that pushed the artistry into its historical grave was growth of information about art. It is useful to mention or rewind, that a compiled set of artworks in a show deploy a variable of the following three models of aesthetics, as proposed by Reza: the ineffable, the instrumental and the toy. Drone geographies are introduced by bringing closer the foreign and far regions which are paradoxically dealing with remote violence (as in the arts, and across mobile screens), the difference almost being an issue of physics, the implosion of the arts as the explosion of the wars. As a feature it could be or pretend any kind of object or physicality, as a predatory re-appearing or as a reverse reason, a counter-discourse or a nagging one, the abjective (abjectile). An attempt to steer art towards a certain end, namely, its exit from the contemporary ready-made political program with the question: ‘what is to be done?’ When only good ideas can become concrete. When someone announces their future promises and marital status, does it increase (that-is) a gesture of commitment that leads to a paralyzed judgment of conceptual trajectories? That leads to a monadic logic in relation to the ‘real’. The condition of arts futures on a plane of political geographies after the internet. Euro-passé is the angle of view of the so-called Eastern Europe in neuro-pace. Why would an author or curator, just by living in the zones of E.E., be obliged to deal with the issues of the E.E? Igor Zabel asks this of mitteleuropa. A precarious journey of nagging back the discourse, deploying a copy-cat as a figure of speech in the text. Bad trip of the performative, trolling idiotic figure without shame: Yeah! Capitalism’s optimism as optimization is a farce of absurdity in our region’s political thriller that we inhabit as reality. Boris Buden is just overburdening our vocabulary, applying such terms as: peripheries, central, RS - ESSAY - DARKO VUKIC - MISLEADING PROJECTILES

eastern, western, middle, -ness-ness, semi, the-new-, anew-, etc. Aside from the currency of the slow-motion hype in ACC’s increasing set of variable awareness modalities and mindless fathoming on ideological scrambles, the crisis is seen as parasitic militarization and is just falsely presumed as a stopping point with the threat of becoming permanent. This primacy of enemy production laws is not just to immobilize, but moreover to identify and localize. A reversal of the scenario as in: art which subjugates politics? Noise is figured into the spectrum of object-subject-abject-al formatting, the meta-generic convention as having sex with drones over the scenery of speculating on tech as a form of metabolic vehicle, gun, rocket engineer that performs rituals with the intention of conjuring a vessel, to carry and direct the overseer by the force against the abyss.


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DARKO VUKIĆ, 2021

RS - ESSAY - DARKO VUKIC - MISLEADING PROJECTILES


FOUNDED

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NAME OF INITIATIVE

U10 Art Space Remont Magacin Cultural Centre Catch 22 Footnote Centre Street Gallery The Applause Institute X

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COLLECTIVE

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NOMAD

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GALLERY

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NON-PROFIT


35M2

35m2.cz

TR AVE LLING GALLE RY

V. Nejedlého 23 130 00 Praha 3-Žižkov

04-07/2021 35M2, CZ, SK, HU, RS

MEMBERS Founding members: Michal Pěchouček, Petra Steinerová Current members: František Fekete, Lexa Peroutka, Tereza Záchová

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Year Established: 2006 In addition to hosting international and established artists, 35M2 is primarily focused on solo projects by young, progressive visual artists, many of whom do not have previous exhibition experience. The curatorial team gives artists as much freedom as possible to create and experiment during the exhibition process, noting the critical role of the dialogue between curator and artist.

Exhibiting artists: Kanrec Sakul (SK), Aleksandra Saša Jeremić (RS), Ádám Takács (HU), Tünde Mézes (HU) Curated by František Fekete, Tea Záchová We lost what was most important to us, human contact, human touch, in one day. In that day, we lost what was common, the sometimes boring and stereotypical treatises in our lives. Physical attendance, presence, not only in an exhibition or cultural institution, was taken away. Culture stopped, it went into hibernation. Inaction and immobility kills us. Moving forward gives us strength for new paths and life. We are part of a system and consumerist regime, which is determined by someone from above. And the creative being cannot be stopped. The term site-specific freely follows artistic trends from the beginning of the 1960s, happenings, land art, body art, performance art, however, we must realize that this art does not depend only on the physical and spatial context but it can also follow social, historical and other contexts in each region and country. Thus, it does not have to strictly touch only public space. In recent decades, during communism and the years after, it has been an unmissable phenomenon in the Czech Republic, which has not only enriched the exhibition setting, but has also provided impulses to the artists themselves, and has expanded the social impact of art. And this is what we follow-up on in our underground context with the Travelling Gallery project. We do not create know-how, but rather want to create an atmosphere of freedom, which we lost at some point, the feeling that culture cannot work only online and cannot be replaced by anything else. Presence, human contact, and dialogue are important for us. And, of course, commune with our generation. The project is based on the need for a tangible physical world. Each artist participated in the other. If human contact was stopped altogether, the strongest and only way for us would be to create something that would go to specific artists with the connection of dialogue. And at the end of this way, we will feel freedom, solidarity, something more than these words can say.

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AT HOME WITH XE NIA Notes on Hospitality Vít Bohal I lost two cities, lovely ones. And, vaster, some realms I owned, two rivers, a continent. I miss them, but it wasn’t a disaster.

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Elizabeth Bishop, “One Art” (1976)[1] Following the wave of great nationalist revivals over the course of the 19th century, discourses of identity in the greater CEE region have largely been formed along nationalist lines;[2] furthermore, this tendency has gained a renewed momentum since the fall of the Soviet Union, which accompanies the drives of its former satellites to craft a new sense of self and belonging in a newly multi-polar world.[3] But the socius is constructed not only by the great tectonic shifts of state and imperial power supported by increasingly comprehensive technological means, but also by the minute fractures which follow crises, and work to adapt to new conditions. This drive for continuity, which can take the form of clan and kinship structures, professional ties, civic networks, ultimately political parties of sorts, sustains the social fabric despite the wear and tear which geopolitical economics inflicts upon it. Each great movement is followed by the formation of scar tissue – the socius works to recuperate that which legacy institutions of state and empire inflict. Each geopolitical fracture is in this way fuzzy – instead of fetishizing the Master Signifier which sustains a fascistic transference onto the Big Other (“What does the Other want [1] Elizabeth Bishop, “One Art”, Poetry Foundation, accessed 14 May 2021 <https://www.poetry foundation.org/poems/47536/one-art>. [2]

Francis Fukuyama, Identity (Profile Books, 2019).

[3] Judy Batt, “European Identity and National Identity in Central and Eastern Europe”, Interlocking Dimensions of European Integration, ed. Helen Wallace (Palgrave, 2001). CZ - ESSAY - VIT BOHAL - AT HOME WITH XENIA

from me?”) we reach a social modality where the question is “what might others want from me?” Where the first is a paranoid delusion sustained by political motivation, the second is a pedestrian call to arms for an alien form of sociality. How then do we accommodate an ‘other’ in uncertain circumstances, and how do ‘we’ expect to be treated when we stray beyond our habitus? In what manner do we encounter slight shifts and uncanny effects in the other’s value system, while striving to represent the institution of cultural hospitality which constitutes a benchmark for us as social beings? And how do we maintain a discerning eye on the abstract precedents which might structure any particular encounter between oneself and an other? Grandmother Marta came from Nové Mesto nad Váhom, her mother was a dark-cast silent woman who sang in the kitchen to hide her pain. She came from a well-to-do Hungarian background; they had a vineyard on the southern slope. But before her Alzheimer’s fully set in, Marta would sing Slovakian folk songs and warn me about the Hungarians – “Magyarország mindenek előtt” she would say... Many researchers, artists, publishers, and scientists have recently been applying the prefix and conception of xeno- to various objects and projects, like xenobiology, xenoarchaeology, xeno-architecture, xenofeminism, Xenotopia[4] … A quick look at the origins of the concept xeno shows the Greek word xenos (ξένος) denoting a “stranger” or “guest-friend.” [5] The concept is also figured as the root for xenia (ξενία) – the cultural institution known from the earliest Greek writings of Homer and Hesiod, one which constituted a central protocol for Greek sociality and reciprocity.[6] Xenia was an idealized practice of hospitality which included a set protocol for the arrival, welcome, disarmament, bathing, and feeding, only after which an interrogation on the stranger’s [4]

Xenotopia<https://offbiennale.hu/en/2021/projects/aki-nincs-velunk-az-is-velunk-van>.

[5]

Pamela Johnston, “‘All Strangers and Beggars are from Zeus’: Early Greek Views of Hospitality,” Pacific Journal (Vol. 13, 2018). [6] Steve Reece, The Stranger’s Welcome: Oral Theory and the Aesthetics of the Homeric Hospitality Scene (University of Michigan Press, 1993).


identity and ultimate objective would be made. The stranger in turn fulfilled the expectations of the host, where transgressions in the worst cases led to strife, bloodshed or war.[7]

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But this classical and mythical reading of xenia runs the risk of remaining blind to the fate of the marginalized, peripheral, sub-altern (who never could, nor can they still, speak nor write) and rests largely silent on the practice of hospitality within a non-aristocratic mode. The xeno thus needs to be interpreted within the frame of not only patrilineal commonality, but also that of social solidarity – it can in this way be reconstructed as a protocol for those who find themselves mutually alienated from the best laid plans of the Master Signifier, and who are cast into a world where they do not enjoy the privilege of status and power, but must survive through sociality nonetheless. Mother crying at the news coming in through the tube. A dun ochre highrise smokes from artillery potshots. Snipers in the streets. “Sarajevo.” I have no concept of what this virtual city nestled among hills might mean to her. I cobble together a children’s song in order to deal with the constant barrage of news flashes about this mythical place: “I have one grandma in Cologne, and one in Sarajevo / she comes to visit us often, and has a discount on the fare” – one day I sing it out loud, gauging mother’s reaction. She tells me to quit it. Xenia must in this sense be distributed beyond the privileged aristocracy which gave our language the cultural concept in the first place. Not everyone is a travelling king in disguise, waiting to take back what is his (like beggared Odysseus in the house of Penelope). Mother tells me she spoke to aunt Slávka, who was born in the Serbian countryside and would bring her father sacks of homegrown potatoes every chance she got. “I told her how hard the whole situation must be for her. She said the Albanians are terrible people.” The derision in mother’s voice is palpable and I nod, soundly agreeing with whatever it was she had said. [7]

One example: the Trojan War started with the Trojan prince Paris, who was guest at the Spartan court of king Agamemnon, absconding with Agamemnon’s wife Helen, and Agamemnon’s kin set out to reclaim her and punish the transgression.

CZ - ESSAY - VIT BOHAL - AT HOME WITH XENIA

It is summer and we are swinging long sticks into the green shoal of poison hemlock – Conium Maculatum – my cousin and I. We are on a family trip, and the adults have left us behind to trailblaze. “That’s NATO,” my cousin says between the whacks, breaking the long, bony stems which sag below his strikes. I blank, not understanding – NATO are the good guys, I thought. This is in August of 1995. What tools then might we need to wrest the xeno from the talons of a puerile politics associated with xenophobia,[8] in favor of a politics where a universal, positive alienation provides the platform for improved ethical, and progressively cunning means of socialization? This would be the task of a xenology which does not fetishize the stranger as alien, but rather studies its own internal mechanisms for integrating the new within the old, and using the tension between them for mutual mutation. Xenology must ultimately be an infrastructural and institutional critique – one which picks up on the realization that clan, kin, family, state, network are all institutions with their own particular internal logic. Each subject must therefore inquire about the protocols for accommodation within their own habitus which constructs the stack of cultural hospitality. Before he died, my grandfather would speak about the globe, and as the day finally neared his visions became vaster, more far-reaching and ambivalent. He spoke about the drought which will come to the eastern steppes and will make all the people from the East look for a better life here, where it is greener. “What would you do in their place?” he asks, and sitting there on the cool leather couch while balancing a coffee, I have nothing to retort. Since hospitality and accommodation are already institutional,[9] such an analysis holds increasing promise in a world which is ever more accelerated in its deracination of individuals and sedimented polities. Such an accelerated logic for productive and re-productive hybridization, miscegenation, and social queering, casts relations [8] Annie Goh, “Appropriating the Alien: A Critique of Xenofeminism,” Mute (29 July 2019)< https:// www.metamute.org/editorial/articles/appropriating-alien-critique-xenofeminism>. [9] Here we can follow Keller Easterling’s notion of “disposition” (Medium Design: Knowing How to Work on the World, 2021) or “affordance”.


from the macro-political sphere (in the CEE it is still largely defined by the tension between nationalist and EU-federal terms), to the contested meso-political, wherein institutions and networks of power are adopted as intangible federations of complicit emancipation, working in conjunction with others towards the generation of common value.

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“Watch out for Poles,” grandma Mila says before I leave to pick up some newly-minted colleagues coming to Prague from Kraków. “They are insincere, different from us.” She understands how dubious her claim is but chooses to warn me nonetheless. Contemporary xenology must, among other things, be underwritten by a critique of contemporary power platforms, while simultaneously harnessing the affordance of creative modes of platforming. These are platforms not driven by economic and extractive logic of the magnitude seen in today’s business platforms (where, for example, pilfered data begets better targeting begets more ad revenue), but rather negotiated as open, mutable architectures for networked synergy. This platformed logic can be adopted only with the personal dissolution of a publican, transparent sense of self and identity – one which must constantly be maintained through common, shared ritual, and which has heretofore largely fallen along gendered, national, racial, or ethnic lines. Rather, identity must be defined through a logic of the included middle, in order to generate the conditions for reciprocity in the face of adversity and an alignment towards the goal of shared thriving. In this way, the politics of essence must give way to the politics of alienation. It won’t be a disaster.

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ALEŠ ČERMÁK, FROM THE SERIES THE EARTH TREMBLES AND THE TRANSVERSAL NAVIGATION 2015

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FOUNDED

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City Surfer Office 35M2 berlinskej model A.M. 180 Petrohradska collective PRAM studio Center for Contemporary Arts Prague Punctum Galerie Jelení Galerie VIPER BCAA System X

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MŰTŐ

mutogroup.hu

PLE ASE , MIND THE GAP!

Kende utca 1. 1111 Budapest

07-14/6/2021 MŰTŐ, Budapest

MEMBERS Founding members: Lili Agg, Nikolett Balázs, Bence Barta, Ron Fischer, Blanka Győri, Bence Kala, Noémi Rácz Former members: Dániel Bernáth, Ráhel Anna Molnár Current members: Lili Agg, Nikolett Balázs, Bence Barta, Ron Fischer, Kata M. Kállai, Zsófia Kókai, Flóra Pálhegyi, Veronika Romhány, Nóra Teplán

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Year Established: 2016 MŰTŐ is an artist-run platform and art collective that works on expanding the boundaries of art, focusing on emerging Hungarian and international artists. MŰTŐ’s community is built through a critical curatorial approach and democratic structure based in DIY culture.

Exhibiting artists: Jakub Choma (SK), Nina Galić (RS), Kata M. Kállai (HU), Dominik Styk (SK), Michaela Švédová (CZ), Marie Vařeková (CZ) Curated by Lili Agg & Zsófia Kókai Please, Mind the Gap! is centered on the notion of transition. On the one hand, it refers specifically to the current state of MŰTŐ as an artistrun gallery, as well as other similar art spaces and collectives, but it also simultaneously alludes to a more broad context of the self-organised art scenes in the CEE region, i.e., the uncertainty and precariousness related to such places. On the other hand, it also refers to the ubiquity of transition periods, insecurities, and the reality of post-human utopias and dystopias which are present in everyday situations outside of the art context, complete with accompanying biomorphic and mechanical aesthetics and prosthetics. Transitions are usually conceptualized as temporary states, more often than not, we are able to recognize changes only after they’ve occurred. But now, the gaps in continuity are becoming more prominent and prolonged, so we detect these transitional periods at their final stage, as Fukuyama describes [1] . Global crises like climate change and pandemics, the unstoppable development of technical tools and digital platforms, forces us to adapt to these unfamiliar situations without pause. It appears that we are continually stuck in a pattern of transition, which inspires feelings of helplessness. Uncertainty about the future generates frustration, which can’t be healed using the well-known tools and traditions of the past. Leaving our comfort zones used to be a difficult and perhaps elective aspect of change. At present, it’s a necessity. Please, Mind the Gap! presents different ideas about transition through the works of artists that represent the four countries participating in the ALTERUM project:

[1] Francis Fukuyama: The End of History and the Last Man. Free Press, 1992 HU - EXHIBITION - BUDAPEST - MŰTŐ - PLEASE, MIND THE GAP!


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DE ATH AND DIY a political paradigm for anti-capitalist ontologies Sonja Teszler “Chytrids generate spheres nested within other spheres. They form clear bubbles containing darker bubbles. They often gather in a swarming multitude on the skin of frogs and salamanders. These gatherings invade and destroy the amphibians’ spheres of immunology, and also create them. Other kinds of chytrids channel death back into life. When surrounded by other beings and things, when living in microbial ecosystems, chytrids can be ontologically indeterminate. In other words, chytrids are ontological amphibians.”

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Julieta Aranda and Eben Kirksey, “Toward a Glossary of the Oceanic Undead: A(mphibious) through F(utures)”, Eflux Journal #112 Capitalism has a death problem.[1] Speculative capital ritualizes cycles of production, accumulation and proliferation, treating our planet as an endless terrain for expansion and exploitation in its race against death. This race starkly clashes with survival practises required for today’s reality of overpopulation, limited resources and ecological catastrophe. Embracing intergenerational cycles of living and dying are crucial to multispecies survival on a planetary scale. In indigenous cultures from pre-modern times up to today, (such as some tribes in Papua New Guinea and Indonesia), death is integrated into collective cosmology and the sphere of life through symbolic, ritualistic forms of interaction. However, Western Modernist cosmology has historically labelled such practices ‘primitive’, and death as the ultimate Other; an unclean, ‘extraterritorial’ sphere. The dead don’t present any use for capitalist circulation (they don’t vote or consume), but instead mark a frightening final frontier at the end of the seemingly endless hallway of speculative progress. Through their absolute negation, the cyclical nature of substances becomes ontologically flattened within capitalism’s binary value system. The institution of death is symbolically opposite to the living and is confined to the periphery, such is the case historically with cemeteries, slums and refugee camps, asylums, colonies, and marginalised identities. A similar reductive violence is exercised onto diverse, local epistemologies on a global scale, in favour of global abstraction and the market. Such ontological two-dimensionality is a symptom of capitalist value systems and marketing; [1]

As pointed out by many from Jean Baudrillard through Franco Bifo Berardi to Donna Haraway to Jane Bennett

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products and people are easier to sell and be sold to, to control, if they’re as defined as possible-- compartmentalised and classified into specific categories, units, and global abstractions. The art market and its aesthetics are dictated by similar principles. ‘Thingness’, ontological rigidity and permanence determine value, allowing the art object to be easily mass-produced, labeled, and marketed. If a painting wasn’t a fixed object, but instead would live and die within a cycle - say, made with materials that gradually deteriorate over time and change the material composition of the work, causing it to ‘die’ - it would lose its value in the capitalist marketplace. Thus, the realm of death and/or ontological ambiguity is banished to exist outside of the value system of modern capital and the art world, while simultaneously making it a space for potential resistance. Precarious placemakers are agents that have continued to find ways to survive within the peripheral bodies of the tyrannical capitalist landscape. Much like the adaptive species of chytrid fungi described above by Julieta Aranda and Eben Kirksey, DIY, grassroot, nonfor-profit collectives are examples of such agents, creating new paradigms of aesthetic and political resistance. They grow new spheres within extraterritorial locations, skeletal and hollow, left behind to become ruins. Such spaces can be found in disused buildings awaiting collapse and to be redeveloped, abandoned public spaces as the othered corpses of the capitalist landscape, which are subsequently revitalised and symbolically re-integrated through the adaptive worldbuilding practices of groups of artists, creative people and communities. The DIY community usually works by the principles of limitation and scarcity, which affects both their political and aesthetic rituals, including curating and maintaining a given space, bringing people together into new encounters and nurturing the surrounding community. Given the precariousness of their position on the extraterritorial periphery (their physical space, resources, etc. are all unstable and often temporary), the labour value is inherently defined within the process itself as a de-instrumentalized practice, instead of being directed towards a concrete marketable or definable outcome. Such natural shapeshifters adapt to new variables, environments, people, necessities, and knowledge, thus redefining dominant capitalist value systems and their epistemological binaries. Constant adaptability, precarity, limited resources and often inherently sitespecific ways of working is reflected in DIY aesthetics, from zines, site-specific installations and exhibitions, performances, squats or underground raves. These aesthetics are quintessentially Abject, resisting the binary politics of cleanliness and sterility. They’re make-shift, wonky, ripped, unstable, temporary,


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rough, and a bit kinky. They don’t try to make the dirt invisible, or to flush Slavoj Žižek’s famous shit down the toilet; there is no separation between the art and its context. Both aesthetically and ontologically contaminated, they’re entangled within the cycles of precarious ecosystems in a mimetic dance. Through this, they fundamentally oppose speculative capitalist aesthetics that are in turn shaped by mass-produced objects, ready to be flushed into a separate, invisible circulation, polished and flattened into clean, sterile and immortal ‘stuff’. As a personal example of a precarious placemaking project, I was involved in the London-based artist-run collective, Wells Projects. We officially started in 2019 in a ‘’dead’ space; a disused nightclub in South London, which was also our home. As with most abandoned spaces, our building was located on a peculiar axis both geographically (it’s on a busy high street between the posh neighborhood of Clapham and the more working class Battersea) and ontologically - from a former counterculture hub of local nightlife, it shifted into an even more radical paradigm of rent-free, communitarian living when it became occupied as a squat. Following the anti-squatting laws enforced in London around 2016, it was taken over by a guardianship company which offered housing for low rent in exchange for maintenance of the building with limited tenant’s rights and contracts, with the aim of sustaining the property’s value until planning permission for its redevelopment could be obtained by its owner. Property guardians are thus very much a part of the speculative, capitalist trajectory of the real estate market. With the limited lifespan we had available, our aim was to re-introduce the space into the local ecosystem as a non-for-profit space for unexpected social and creative encounters. Working within the established limitations, such as site-specificity due to the eclectic architecture, constant leaks and unstable electricity, the boundaries and needs of both our flatmates and surrounding local community, and building management, as well as the wider artistic community in London, we organised exhibitions, performances, lunches, and get-togethers over the course of two years. We were doing all of this knowing that we would eventually receive a notice giving us a month to move out of the space before it would be knocked down and developed into flats and a pub. That moment finally came in March 2021, marking the time to continue the work of labour and care by moving on to build new spheres from different piles of compost. This process-oriented approach resonates with similar grassroots, DIY organisations embedded in precarious contexts across London and beyond; other guardianship or squatting initiatives like Countdown Grabowsee, a site-specific residency taking place every August in an abandoned military hospital near Berlin, nomadic artist and curatorial collectives like Bad Art, Muslim Sisterhood, and Black Obsidian Sound System, people hosting non-commercial project spaces in their homes like Rectory Projects and HU - ESSAY - SONJA TESZLER - DEATH AND DIY

pop-up projects like Street Scenes, committed to creating moments of social encounters and play in urban public spaces through various free games, readings, and participatory activities. All such precarious placemakers and ontological amphibians propose alternative ways of creating life and community within the peripheral, ‘dead’ spaces of the capitalist terrain. Creating dwellings within this extraterritorial realm of ‘compost’, these worldbuilders cultivate new ecosystems and rituals of labour and care that reintroduce the cyclical value of life/death against the cult of un-death perpetuated by speculative capitalist cosmology. However, it should also be recognised that albeit unwittingly, these agents often get integrated into capitalist speculation and various forms of neocolonialism and gentrification just by virtue of their presence, their worldbuilding practices used to drive up value and facilitate the exploitation, marketisation and ontological flattening of a certain locations, products, or subjects. These deterministic dynamics can be mapped onto the relationship between the Western art world’s relationship to the global periphery, including the precarious, artist-led DIY scenes in Hungary and across Eastern Europe. The practises and spaces of previously marginalised, abject communities become fetishised, abstracted, categorised and integrated into the speculative art institution with the market at the centre; “Cosmopolitical possibilities are in tension with colonial legacies. Piles of shells and dead bodies continue to accumulate.”[2] Though being aware of and accountable for such a contradictory position is important, it shouldn’t hold precarious placemakers in a deadlock. Rituals of precarity, adaptability, curiosity, kinship, death, and revolt have to keep pushing back to challenge and eventually transform dominant speculative ideology. And even if they don’t - we will still just have to keep building.

[2] Julieta Aranda and Eben Kirksey, Toward a Glossary of the Oceanic Undead: A(mphibious) through F(utures), Eflux Journal #112


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AMBER KIM, REPURPOSE, DUO EXHIBITION AND PERFORMANCE WITH MELLISSA MUNCASTER AND RACHEL LAIRD 2019, Wells Projects, London Photo: Adam Pietraszewski

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PINCE ISBN bookstore+gallery aqb project space Feri Skurc group hidegszoba MŰTŐ Liget Galéria FKSE – Studio of Young Artists Association Csakoda Independent Art Department index-link Gyros in the pocket X

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VUNU

vunu.sk

FLOWE RS & MONSTE RS

Hlavná 20 040 01 Košice

08/6-01/7/2021 Východoslovenská galéria, Kosice

MEMBERS

Exhibiting artists: Nikolett Balázs (HU), Tomas Bryscejn (CZ), Kanrec Sakul (SK), Tamara Spalajkovic (RS)

Founding members: Nikolas Bernáth, Samuel Velebný, Ivana Rusnáková

Curated by Nikolas Bernáth

Current members: Nikolas Bernáth, Samuel Velebný, Ivana Rusnáková, Tibor Czitó, Róbert Bernáth, Matej Džagy Miterko

Hold onto your inner child, they used to say.

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Year Established: 2016 VUNU is a cultural collective dedicated to young contemporary art, who collaborates with numerous local and foreign partners. The mission of VUNU is to provide a platform for the presentation of contemporary works by young Slovak and foreign artists, both in the gallery setting as well as in unique events organized by the collective.

From my point of view, it could mean perceiving everything – the visually unknown or abstract – as some kind of monster. Remember that old MGMT music video “Kids”, with the crying infant? It feels exactly like that. I am that kid, tripping on his own visual ignorance of the outer world. Ignorance is bliss, they also used to say. But before xenophilia takes over and we get lost in our own desire and attraction to the unknown, the fear of the dark hits twice as hard. You know that famous poem “Do not go gentle into that good night” that Michael Caine recites in some movie before the astronauts are put into hypersleep? The next line continues “rage against the dying of the light”. So let’s rage. Get up and have a party, they sing. Imagine that the light is not dying, it’s just flashing right now. You see the world differently from under a strobe light. The non-essentials are gone. Only what you’re focused on is visible. And the forms of the objects are constantly changing. Let the brain do the work. Trip him up. Focus on the color fields. You see that kaleidoscopic flower? There ain’t no abstract expressionism, no futurism, no cubism. There ain’t no Rothko, no Severini, no Picasso. Only flowers and monsters. You decide which one shows up.

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SOME REMARKS ON THE ( IM ) POSSIBILITIES OF ARTIST- RUN SPACES IN SLOVAKIA

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Miroslava Urbanová I arrived home with a key from an artist-run space in my pocket; I’m preparing to manually switch on three videos on a daily basis for the next two weeks as the curator of the exhibition on view. I am not an artist myself. Currently, I am primarily working as an art historian for a private art museum. I sometimes feel a bit envious of the freedom and devotion of artists who have decided to run their own independent spaces. On the other hand, my constant overthinking and critical mind, ready to review any element of cultural production, points out all of the possible obstacles, flaws, and notes on what-I-would-do-better that keep me from running my own space. But I never actually did it and that is the point. And despite this, I have decided to present my observations with a quite broad but bold opening statement: One of the most exciting aspects of the Slovakian artistic landscape of the past two decades is the various alternative/independent spaces for culture,[1] among them, a great number of artistrun spaces. While their liveliness usually does not quite correlate with their longevity, their importance for a local art scene in any given time-space constellation is undeniable. Their specific ambitions tend to differ, but what they do have in common is that they do not strive to provide a convenient, clean, white-cube experience. They accept the imperfections and are open to works-in-progress, to posing important questions, and to discussions rather than to trying to provide a cohesive picture about the times in which we live. A large number of such initiatives were and are based in the capital, Bratislava, but they are also appearing more frequently nowadays in different cities and villages across the country.[2] A limited oral history of the alternative spaces in Bratislava between 1989 and 2016[3] was recently published in a book about the local independent art scene (music, theatre, visual arts), which included interviews with the people of the artist-run spaces Tranzit dielne (Boris Ondreička), Photoport (Filip Vančo), Trivjednom (Silvia Lovasová, Sylvia Jokelová, Ľubica Segečová), and Bastart (Petra Feriancová). Even regional art spaces and larger institutions, including galleries with a staff of younger cultural workers as well, have begun to slowly create more possibilities for what I see as the essentials of contemporary art [1]

Since 2011 Anténa – Network for Independent Culture unites cultural centres and independent contemporary art and culture organisations in Slovakia, mostly multigenre spaces led by collectives of people with different backgrounds.

[2] In 2021, Marek Adamov from Stanica Žilina-Záriečie went on a bike-hike on a search for cultural nods in Slovakia, sharing his journey via social networks. [3] Zuzana Duchová – Slávo Krekovič, BA!! Miesta živej kultúry 1989 – 2016, Atrakt Art – združenie pre aktuálne umenie a kultúru Bratislava 2016. The situation of specifically artist-run spaces since 2018 are covered in the article by Róbert Repka, who interviewed the founders and people close to these initiatives in Slovakia. Róbert Repka, We don’t rely on selling artworks. The independent uncertainty of Slovak artist-run spaces, in: Supermarket Stokholm 2018. Available online: https://issuu.com/supermarketartfair/docs/issuu_magazine_supermarket_2018_144 21.6.2021 SK - ESSAY - MIROSLAVA URBANOVA - SOME REMARKS ON THE (IM)POSSIBILITIES OF ARTIST-RUN SPACES IN SLOVAKIA

practice: openness, inclusivity, discursivity, and flexibility towards process-oriented and performative art, overlapping different artistic practices, and networking between home and abroad (e.g. the residency program of the Slovak National Gallery at Schaubmarov Mlyn in Pezinok), which are hallmarks of artist-run spaces. This has also played a critical role in the return of creative people to their local regions. One of the youngest artist-run spaces is EQO – Priestor interaktívnej kultúry (Adam Macko) in Spišský Hrhov, a village with around 1,500 residents. Another factor supporting this re-investment in cultural diversity was the naming of Košice as the European Capital of Culture in 2013. Since then, multiple venues for culture have been established, including K.A.I.R. – Košice Artist in Residence, Kotolňa, Šopa Gallery, and VUNU, which are all led in cooperation between various artists and arts professionals. These initiatives show strong orientation towards the mediation of art and discursive formats for presenting contemporary art. The will to contribute, to share, to make things happen, opens up possibilities for presentation outside the frameworks of traditional institutions, slowly scratching away the sediment of conservative approaches to the role of art in postcommunist societies. Simultaneously, the artist-run space is typically, to a certain extent, a generational project that tends to attract younger artists, eager to present their student works or scholarship projects in these specific environments that reject structures and mechanisms that limit creative freedom. The broadening of the role of artist-as-cultural-producer towards cultural organisator and/or curator is more common than the inverse,[4] although it remains in most cases a temporary shift. Still, fellowships in artist-run spaces are in this case surely stronger than the institutional hierarchies that they try to overcome. The limitations of artist-run spaces fall largely to the devotion and persistence of the founders themselves. Apart from common problems with finances, the points of no return tend to be marked by exhaustion, the impossibility of further evolution, or an unwillingness to mimic certain functions of the better-insulated art institutions. As a matter of fact, sometimes it is quite difficult to distinguish at first sight, and to clearly categorize which spaces could be described as artistrun because they are rarely a one-man or woman show, uniting different kinds of cultural workers. It is also quite common in Slovakia for an artist to open a gallery with commercial interests, examples from the past include Kressling Gallery (co-founder Viktor Frešo) and Fru Fru Gallery (Miloš Kopták), today it includes Ateliér XIII (Juraj Ličko) and TOTO! je galéria in Bratislava (co-founder Miloš Kopták). The will to sell, market, and represent here is the thin line that makes the difference. Ultimately, artist-run spaces in Slovakia usually end-up functioning primarily as exhibition venues, with their most visited day being without a doubt the exhibition opening, which provides a popular platform for both socializing and networking. Any accompanying program [4]

Artists such as Dorota Kenderová or Boris Ondreička moved from the independent art scene to the structures of the public and private art institutions. The former was the co-founder of the artist-run gallery HIT in Bratislava, later she became a director of the Eastern Slovakian Gallery in Košice. Ondreička was in charge of the Tranzit dielne in Bratislava, but afterwards he started to work for TBA21 in Vienna.


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is the question of each project and focus of the venue. They can extend their activities not only to discussions and lectures, but as well towards the organisation of residencies and workshops as well. A good example is BANSKÁ ST A NICA, established in 2009 by artist Svätopluk Mikyta and cultural manager Zuzana Bodnárová, who organize workshops and symposiums and have created an artist-in-residency program in Banská Štiavnica. In 2018 they moved from a former train station to a former school in the city. The founders of artist-run spaces are able to network and connect at home and abroad in a much more immediate manner in comparison to public art institutions, which are lacking the flexibility and sometimes the willingness to go beyond what is expected from them. This is most visible in the structure of the programming and in the connections that the artists establish and who they decide to present – which can be either the result of an open call or their personal selection. In comparison to the other European art capitals I have experienced in the past few years, namely Warsaw and Vienna,[5] Bratislava, which is much smaller, has lost the most in the way of sustainable, productive interconnectedness across its art scene, with the disappearance of some critical projects like Bratislava Art Festival (BLAF), which offered a programme through various private galleries, public institutions, and off spaces from 2010 until 2016. Some local attempts have appeared from time to time, such as Petržalka Gallery Weekend in 2019, or collaboration between independent art spaces such as LOM (Jonáš Gruska), Temporary Parapet (Alexandra Barth), Photoport and HotDock (Juraj Rattaj, Roman Bicek, Ludmila Hrachovinová, Jaroslav Kyša, Aurélia Garová). One of its goals was to attract the attention of the local inhabitants of the biggest housing estate in Bratislava, where these spaces recently relocated to. On the other hand, among the pinnacles of cultural events in Poland and Austria are Friend of a Friend (Warsaw) and Curated by (Vienna), where private galleries unite to host international shows with curators and artists from abroad. Strong ties at the axis of the social, political, and artistic form the main ingredients of these international exchanges. In this context, HIT Gallery (Dorota Kenderová, Lucia Tkáčová) was an example of a small gallery in the cellar of a building of the Academy of Fine Arts and Design in Bratislava that invited international artists to participate in its program. HotDock in Petržalka, Bratislava, uses the international connections of its members to create their exhibition line-up. The newest independent art space APART Collective in Petržalka ambitiously combines an exhibition space, library, and artist-in-residence program.

of the exclusively representative, demand-oriented, and market-driven. They do not shy away from occupying the venues that one could describe as unattractive, and which are either located in the smaller, more peculiar spaces or in the areas located on the outskirts of the city. Simultaneously, they provide an interesting framework for the projects that they host. For example, ŽUMPA Art Gallery was located in the bathroom of a private flat on Zochova Street, and the artist-run space Beastro (Ivan Kalev) on Mikulášska street in the city center is located in what was quite possibly the tiniest convenience store in Bratislava. Tranzit dielne was situated in a hall on the outskirts of the city and one of the former homes of HotDock was a container in the harbor of the Slovakian capital. The impossibilities of space itself offers paradoxically more possibilities to create without borders, being limited usually only by technical know-how and finances. What is vital is sustainable funding for these spaces – in Slovakia, it is usually a marathon of grant applications at various levels: regional, national, and in the event of international collaborations, possibly transnational.[6] The power of artist-run and alternative spaces for culture in general is their (in)essentiality, their power to transform the standing waters into a stream of activities that would not be possible anywhere else. Cooperation and trust are the main ingredients in establishing a long-lasting relationship not only between art practitioners and art spaces, but with the public as well. Every attempt counts.

The genesis of most independent Slovakian artist-run spaces usually begins as a way to fill the discovered void, to counter the lack, to create something different (if not even a fatalisticallyformulated something new) that would expand beyond the demarcated field of what already exists, beyond what is only slowly changing, and what remains stiff and inflexible in the institutionalized art world. They search for their place outside the hierarchical structures [5]

Two years ago I visited Warsaw as a writer-in-residence in order to take a closer look at the gallery scene, institutional structures and networks of collaboration. At that time I had been working for the fourth year in a private Viennese gallery, but I had not turned my eyes from my hometown in Bratislava and the Slovakian visual art scene. Especially in Vienna, I observed the interconnectedness of both the big art institutions, numerous private galleries and off spaces that unite within art festivals, art fairs or symbolically within some kind of art network. SK - ESSAY - MIROSLAVA URBANOVA - SOME REMARKS ON THE (IM)POSSIBILITIES OF ARTIST-RUN SPACES IN SLOVAKIA

[6]

Since 2014 a crucial role in Slovakia has played the Slovak Art Council. Other sources of financial support could be found on a regional level, private sponsoring. For specifically V4 projects there is the Visegrad fund.


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RENÁTA PINTÉROVÁ, CARBON NEUTRAL 2021, Beastro, Bratislava, Photo: Ivan Kalev

SK - ESSAY - MIROSLAVA URBANOVA - SOME REMARKS ON THE (IM)POSSIBILITIES OF ARTIST-RUN SPACES IN SLOVAKIA


FOUNDED

201620102017-2020 200620182020? 2014201520202006-2009 20162003 - 2019 2011-2015

NAME OF INITIATIVE

VUNU (Kosice) HotDock (Bratislava) Temporary Parapet (Bratislava) Photoport (Bratislava) LOM space (Bratislava) Phoinix (Bratislava) Kotolňa (Kosice) Šopa (Kosice) APART (Bratislava) Bastart (Bratislava) Beastro (Bratislava) Hit Gallery (Bratislava) Make Up Gallery (Košice) X

X

X

X

X

X

X

X

X

X

X

ARTIST-RUN

X

X

X

COLLECTIVE

NOMAD

X

X

X

X

X

X

X

X

GALLERY

X

COMMUNITY

X

X

X

X

X

X

X

X

X

NON-PROFIT


PARTICIPANTS

Alex Selmeci & Tomáš Kocka Jusko

Darko Vukić

SK

RS Alex Selmeci and Tomáš Kocka Jusko are an artistic duo working together since 2017. They are focused on object-oriented work, using the medium of the exhibition to create complex environments and intermedia installations. They mainly work with construction and technical materials to create their specific identity or poetics, which deal with matters of variability, disassembly, reusability or the conservation of things, both generally and of their own works.

Darko Vukić (1992) is a visual artist, researcher, and writer. He’s involved in artistic initiatives and projects across different platforms, through exhibitions, and discursive programs, while also closely collaborating within the institutional as well as alternative and independent contexts both locally and abroad. Editing, developing and curating: Prosthetic pavilion, $vvarm – a work station platform for plug-in and translation experiments, and Tag_terror- magazine for the development of textual practices in art; as a range for the revision of meaning and critical insights in current theoretical-artistic discourses.

Alexandra Saša Jeremic RS

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Aleksandra Sasa Jeremic (1988), graduated from the Painting Department at the University of Fine Arts in Belgrade. She makes performance, video, and sound installations through which she deals with issues of identity, collective and personal memory, and the culture of memory. She uses her own personal experiences of migration within a broader cultural and political context, and explores the tension between politics and poetics.

Dominik Styk, Michaela Švédová, Marie Vařeková CZ The project Crying Orchestra refers to the multicultural social phenomenon of professional mourners, and explores the possibility for its evolution in contemporary society. Crying Orchestra was born from a discussion about the need for new rituals in contemporary society, with the aims of locating a relevant archive of symbols that contemporary societies can engage with. Showing sadness or anger is, in many cultures, considered taboo, and very often the rites of passage into manhood dictate that emotions must be suppressed, or even obliterated. The atmospheric environment of the crying choir offers a space for free emotional expression.

Bence Barta HU Bence Barta (1990) is a Budapest-based visual and sound artist. He is a co-founder and has been an active member of the MŰTŐ collective since 2016. He focuses on the different aspects and impacts of aggression, both individual and social, physical and indirect. He transforms his artistic ideas into sound structures that range from field recording-based experimental compositions to rhythmic noise, which are realized both as sound installation and his primary musical project, noahstas.

Flóra Pálhegyi HU Flóra Pálhegyi (1989) combines graphic elements with unusual materials and unexpected environments to investigate the relation between planar surfaces and spatial settings. She is primarily interested in the relationship between personal-anecdotal qualities and collective experiences, recurring themes are the tragedy of the social construct of womanhood, the possibilities that exist in the banality of everyday life, and the creation of subjective history. Apart from her solo projects, she also works collaboratively and interactively.


František Fekete

Jakub Choma

Lili Agg

Miroslava Urbanova

CZ

SK

HU

SK

František Fekete plays various roles both in the art world and the world at-large. He studied under Martin Blažíček at FAMU’s Center for Audiovisual Studies, which folllowed his bachelor’s degree from Milena Dopitová’s Intermedia Studio at the Ladislav Sutnar Faculty of Art and Design at the University of West Bohemia. In 2015 he was a finalist for the EXIT Art Award. Fekete is also a curator of contemporary art at Prague’s Galerie 35m2 (since 2015) and is a co-founder of Pilsen’s Vestředu Gallery, where he was also a curator from 2013 to 2015. In 2016, he curated the exhibition FAMUFEST.

Jakub Choma (XX) reflects on the perpetual transition between reality and digitality. He focuses on the adaptation of human thinking and seeing into the virtual world, and parallel to this, the elimination of the human body’s physical existence.

Mate Elod Janky HU Mate Elod Janky (1998) primarily works with digital mediums and internet-based found footage. He conveys ambiguous emotion into crowded but fragile worlds both in audio and visual territorites. His pieces can be perceived as pages ripped from an encrypted diary; in terms of visuality, he is interested in developing personal symbolism & mytholgy. Aside from solo sound projects and visual art, Janky is the manager of the record label Daddypower Records.

Iva Kuzmanović

90 -91

RS Iva Kuzmanović (1984) is a co-founder of U10 Art Space and is a regular member of the U10 Collective and has participated as an organizer, curator, or artist in over 150 arts and cultural exhibitions and projects. In her practice, she works across different media ranging from painting (usually oil on canvas) to multimedia installation, conceptually, she deals with notions of anxiety, fatalism and temporality, which are frequently realized through depictions of vast artificial neon-desert landscapes, atomic bomb testing grounds or tropical settings of airplane crashes.

Ivana Rusnáková

Lili Agg (1991) is a co-founder and active member of MŰTŐ, an artist-run space and collective founded in 2016. In her work she reflects on human identity and existence in a world overwhelmed by images and information particulate. During the creative process, she subjectively analyses both the uncanny and more sensible aspects of fragmented realities, the depressing nature of a posthuman world, and the hidden manipulation or effects of capitalist-realism.

Lukáš Čerňák aka Kanrec Sakul CZ

HU

Max Vajt CZ Max Vajt (1997) is a Prague-based artist working in a variety of media including video, sound installation, video games, and posters. Their praxis develops from real world events upon which they impose a fictional narrative, inspired by the works of famous authors of absurd theatre.

SK Ivana Rusnáková is a project and production manager based in Košice. As a founding member of VUNU, she is responsible for its overall management and fundraising as well as for the projects VUNU Gallery, DAAVS Festival, and New Translation. Rusnáková manages the local and international networking activities and collaborations at the nonprofit Creative Industry Košice, and the media art projects realized within Košice’s UNESCO Creative Cities Network. She gained experience in production while collaborating with the Nuit Blanche festival in Košice and Bratislava in 2016- 2017, and was the co-organizer for the Art & Tech Days festival in 2018- 2019.

Katie Zazenski PL / USA Katie Zazenski is an American-born, Warsaw-based artist, curator, writer, and lecturer whose practice is centered around interconnectedness and communication. Zazenski has been co-director of the independent, Warsaw-based art space Stroboskop since 2018 and has been on the editorial team BLOK Magazine (PL) since 2020, where she focuses on the community of non-institutional, artist-run/off/project spaces in Eastern and Central Europe. Zazenski received her MFA in Sculpture from the Cranbrook Academy of Art (Detroit, MI, USA) and is a two-time Fulbright Fellow to Poland.

Nikolas Bernáth Lukáš Černák (1989) is a Slovak artist living in Košice, Kanrec Sakul is his artistic pseudonym. Kanrec is devoted to various art forms and media. Since 2014, he has been exploring “Flowers which don’t exist in botany” – objects, paintings, drawings and installations which have the characteristics of fantasy flowers, landscapes, and caves with unclear, amorphous shapes. Wild colours, variable textures, material diversity and artificial light are typical features of his work.

Kata M. Kállai

Kata M. Kállai (1987) received her Master in Media Design from the Moholy-Nagy University of Art and Design, she has been a member of the Studio of Young Artists’ Association since 2014 and the MŰTŐ collective since 2019. Kállai works primarily in video, digital media, and multimedia installation, more recently she has begun exploring 3D modeling and animation to realize her work.

Miroslava Urbanová (1991) studied art history at the University of Vienna and Comenius University in Bratislava. She was a curator for Loft 8 Gallery in Vienna, and currently works as an art historian at Nedbalka Gallery in Bratislava, and as a freelance curator and writer. In 2019 she curated the group show MELANCH LIA at PGU Žilina and co-curated Y at Umelka in Bratislava, and in 2020, Smoke and Mirrors at Medium Gallery in Bratislava. She writes for Profil, Flash Art CZ/SK, and Glosolália magazines, and the online platform Artalk.cz and feminist newsletter Kurník.

Mézes Tünde HU Tünde Mézes (1992, Budapest, Hungary) is a visual artist based in Budapest. Her artistic practice can be described through a variety of techniques and media, three-dimensional objects, (pseudo-) readymades and installations. Her main focus is on text-based art. In addition to her artistic activities she is a founder of PINCE artist-run space.

SK Nikolas Bernath (1993) is a multimedia artist, curator, and organizer of numerous activities in the cultural fields of contemporary visual art and music. He studied in the Faculty of Arts at the Technical University in Košice, where he graduated in the New Media Studio of Michal Murin. He is currently a doctoral student at the Department of Visual Arts and Intermedia, in the Studio of Free Creativity 3D. He has led the independent space Kotolňa since 2014 and in 2016 he co-founded VUNU Gallery, which he still manages today. He is the Editor in chief of New Translation magazine and the director of the DAAVS Festival. Recently curatorial projects include the exhibitions Martin Piaček METAFORUM (Orthodox Synagogue Košice), Flowers and Monsters (East Slovak Gallery), Hats Off (VUNU Gallery), New Translation (Kulturpark), Ancient Skinwalker (Berlinskej Model) and New Magic Wand (Hotdock Project Space). He is interested in discovering and co-creating new cultural situations, formative influences in a time of post-industrial machines and social inequalities, and the relationship between humanity and the planet on the border of symbiosis and parasitism.


Nikolett Balázs

Gergely Ofner

Šimon Sýkora

Sonja Teszler

HU

HU

CZ

HU

Nikolett Balázs (1990) creates objects that redefine classic artistic techniques and materials, she has ben a member of the MŰTŐ collective since 2016. Her works often originate from peripheral environments; she drags found objects and inferior materials from their milieu, recycling and repositioning them into an artworld context as a way of questioning their values and interpretations. Balázs folds, cuts, untwists, guts, sews, glues, forms, paints and constantly searches for new contexts for the materials. The playful, sensual, social and feminine natures of fine art are essential elements of Balázs’s work, which borders on the abstract and figurative.

Gergely Ofner (1996) is a Budapest-based photographer and videographer. He primarily works with art galleries and theatre in the fields of dance and music. Ofner uses both digital and analogue techniques to create short films, documentaries, promotional videos, or to document performances and shoot portraits, events, concerts and theatre productions in a documentary style.

Tamara Spalajković

HU

RS Ráhel Anna Molnár (1992) is a writer, artist, and editor. She’s involved in the DIY, self-organised cultural scenes primarily in Eastern Europe, and has been building different platforms for the research and expression of peripheral regions, people, and ideas. She has been dealing with notions of friendship and care for the past several years. For her visual-based works, Molnár straddles the space between the artistic and curatorial, working primarily with text and site-specific installation. Her projects are sensual explorations of the treasures she finds beneath her fingertips, mostly formed from close collaborations with visual and sound artists.

92 -93

RS The artworks of Nina Galić (1987) are non-functional tools. Galić invites us to participate in a thought experiment related to the transformation of our bodies. Her works remind us of medical tools from the past, however, their aims or functions haven’t yet been clarified.

Nóra Teplán

Sanda Kalebić Nóra Teplán’s (b. 1990) work is inspired by perceivable reality and the state of inconsistency, inspiring contemplation from diverse perspectives. A collection of visual traces appears on the canvases to make an invisible state of mind, visible, where the fragments of natural elements refer to distraction. The image-based works remain as symbols of (post-)painterly strategies by combining abstraction and minimalism with the use of advanced techniques, which creating an array of intensities. The manual imprints and underlying expressiveness refer to the history of painting, and appear as contradictory signs on the canvas, giving the impression of conceptual meaning. With the use of different mediums, paintings, objects and texts, re-cognition and disintegration, reconstruction and obedience are at the center of her work. The stations of transition created by these experiences, and the artworks realized by them are component parts that are intended to reference the condition of identity.

Sonja Teszler is an independent writer and curator based between London and Budapest with a practice focusing on the Eastern European diaspora and intersections of art and ecology. Her work has been published in Flash Art, Arts of the Working Class, thisistomorrow, Something Curated and Calvert Journal among others.

Vanja Žunić Ráhel Anna Molnár

Nina Galić

HU

The disposition of Šimon Sýkora (1990) is characterized by primitivism and sensitivity, working with themes like absurdity, embarrassment, irony and apathy. Through his paintings he captures distant characters, silently provocative inhabitants of terrains of which the rules we are not aware, while his performative practice dives into the bizarre realms of political extremism.

RS Sanda Kalebić (1992) has her degree in art history from the Faculty of Philosophy at the University of Belgrade. In 2016 she received the Pavle Beljanski Memorial Collection Award for the best graduation paper submitted in art history. During her studies she was an exhibition assistant at the Museum of African Art in Belgrade. She has been working at U10 Art Space since 2015 and since 2017, she has been a member of the U10 Art Collective, where she has participated in the organization of over 100 exhibitions and numerous other events. Kalebić also regularly writes about art.

RS Vanja Žunić aims to emphasize the importance and poetics of everyday life. She is interested in the potential for intervention in collective space, in which she raises questions about the contemporary human experience and constructed social systems, like language. Through reshaping, she creates new abstract, alternative, and virtual spaces. More recently, she has been working with and focusing on organic and found materials as a way of upcycling and using the inherent nature of a material to create new meaning.

Tamara Spalajković(1996) received her bachelor’s degree from the Sculpture Department at the Faculty of Fine Arts in Belgrade, currently she is working on her master’s studies at the Faculty of Fine arts (FaVU VUT) in Brno. She is a founding member of the collective Institute for Applause, is an assistant at Street Gallery, and in 2020, together with her colleagues, she founded the magazine Bublina for FaVU VUT. She regularly participates in collective practices and has exhibited her work in Belgrade, Brno and other cities in Europe.

Ádám Varga Tereza Záchová CZ Tereza Záchová is an art curator, teacher, and editor of the Czech edition of Flash Art Magazine “MagiC Carpets”. She studied philosophy, art education, and curatorial studies at Usti nad Labem in the Northern region of the Czech Republic. She is the founder of the alternative curatorial project Bunka, currently she co-curates the non-profit gallery 35M2 in Prague. Past curatorial projects include The Earth – Current Living, an international group show, Isotrophy at the House of Art in Brno and Quantum Fields in Košice. She’s interested in applying the gender and ecological politics upheld by Nordic countries to the Czech context. She was a resident fellow at the Delfina Foundation in London, Mustarinda in Finland, and Museums Quarties in Vienna.

HU Ádám Varga received his degree from the painting department at the Hungarian University of Fine Arts in 2019. After graduating, he spent six months in Leipzig for an Erasmus and internship at Galerie für Zeitgenössische Kunst as an art technician and collections manager. He is a member of the artist-run space PINCE and the FKSE - Young Artists Studio Association. Varga is currently a gallery assistant at Erika Deák Gallery.


Zsófia Kókai

Ádám Takács

Aleš Čermák

HU

HU

HU

CZ

94 -95

Veronika Romhány

Veronika Romhány (b.1987) is an artist based in Brussels, Belgium. She experiments with unnatural narrative storytelling in 3D animation within the frames of techno-amateurism, and illiteracy mixed with voyeurism as an escapist practice. Yet, as understanding the term of “viewer” as a critique towards human agent superiority, she examines the reciprocal creative practice between the human and its software tools during creation. Using deconstructive analysis, followed by speculative reconstruction, her works portray mostly paradoxical situations in virtual, laboratory environments, focusing on the digitized, automated, human body itself. She uses the imagery of monitoring, analysis, observation, or pseudo-experiments - while these action-scenes are digitally recorded. For this long term, practice-based artistic research, she has been working within a collaborative form under the pseudonym Nimova Projeckt since 2015, together with sound designers, musicians from the DIY scene and experimental electronic music scene in Hungary, Czechia, Ukraine and the Netherlands. She currently works as a mentor at MA Game Design, LUCA School of Art, Belgium, and GameLAB, Polish National Agency for Academic Exchange.

Zsófia Kókai (1991) is a curator and member of the MŰTŐ artist-run platform and art collective and is engaged in developing artist-run and non-profit projects. In her curatorial work she focuses on her generation, usually with the active involvement of artists, and also on the growing precarity and the perception and interpretation of social and personal dilemmas. She currently works as assistant curator at Artpool Art Research Center. In addition to art-related activities, she is also involved in music-related projects such as the Mmmnmnm music blog and the Lahmacun community radio.

Tomas Bryscejn CZ Tomas Bryscejn (1988) is a Czech artist based in Prague. He primarily works with painting and installation. He draws inspiration from the echoes of B-side movie culture and the everyday experience of interacting with technology. His paintings are charged with a trance-like quality and obsession with virtuality, which results in an ephemeral void without context, which rids the viewers of their existential weight.

Luka Cvetkovic Viktor Kákoš CZ Viktor Kákoš (1993) graduated from the Faculty of Architecture CVUT in Prague. He completed an Erasmus program in Singapore, an internship at ECDM in Paris, e2a in Zurich, and has worked in the studio of David Kraus in Prague. In 2017 and 2018 he worked as a project architect at e2a. He is currently pursuing his master’s degree at the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague.

Vít Bohal CZ Vít Bohal is a PhD candidate at the Center for Critical Cultural Theory at Charles University in Prague and is also a member of Diffractions Collective

RS Luka Cvetković (1995) is a visual and performance artist interested in power, the aestheticization of politics, and the position of the general public in the art-making process. In 2019, alongside curator Dušan Savić, he performed a protest walk from Belgrade to Venice as a commentary on the Serbian Pavilion at the Venice Biennale. He took part in 1999 – The Oracle Told Me I’d Fall in Love with the One, a project curated by Natalija Paunić in 2019. He has participated in numerous shows, including In touch with at the Museum of Contemporary art Belgrade (2019), It is your birthday at Street gallery (2019), and The new media Triennial at the Pavilion of Cvijeta Zuzorić (2019). His sculpture ‘Gift’ is in the collection of the Zepter Museum (2016). He was part of Lie and Theft as Practice (2019/2020), a project sponsored by the Goethe Institute, and is a co-founder of “The Applause Institute”, an art collective based in Belgrade.

Ádám Takács (1994) is interested in creating ontologically uncertain situations with a utopian attitude. Ephemeral constellations of ready-made forms and metaphors, drawings, and ordinary objects, positioned in context with each other and the environment, build a virtual network of abstract relationships.

Tibor Czitó SK Tibor Czitó (1993) is a Slovak photographer currently finishing his master’s degree in New Media and Photography at the Faculty of Arts in Košice. He is working in the field of documentary photography and conceptual art. He is a long time member of the VUNU gallery team.

Aleš Čermák (XXXX) is an artist, writer and founder of A-B_HPP (Ausdruck Books Hybrid Publishing Platform) which brings together authors and performers focused on researching hybrid thinking and writing.


IMPRINT Editor: Ráhel Anna Molnár Co-Editor: Kathryn Zazenksi Design: Flóra Pálhegyi & Dorottya Pákh Project coordinator: Zsófia Kókai Printing: PAUKER Nyomdaipari Kft. Publisher: KultDesk Kulturális Alapítvány ISBN: 978-615-01-2336-3 kultdesk.hu/alterum

© Befriending Endless., 2021 The copyrights for the written and visual materials published in this book belong to the authors and editors. The project is co-financed by the Governments of Czechia, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia through Visegrad Grants from International Visegrad Fund. The mission of the fund is to advance ideas for sustainable regional cooperation in Central Europe.