the interventions

A MONUMENT / Mihai Balko

Bd. Nicolae Bălcescu intersecţie cu str. Traian Vuia

10.11. – 20.11. 2015

“The monument is erected to commemorate or glorify a past event or an important personality. Its message is always positive and triumphant, even though the event behind it is not quite so.

The one at hand is a mutant which, 25 years after its event, marks the shift in the public space symbols, from the single party to the single religion, our common salvation. The energies formerly directed towards the construction of communism through the erection of factories are now aimed at building new orthodox “factories”, along with the ever-present crosses which mark the site of a violent death as well as the gas pipes networks.”

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BEST BUCHAREST / Hans van Houwelingen

Best Bucharest, take 1” is the first of a series of analyses of Bucharest public space from social, political, commercial, religious and artistic perspectives. Artist Hans van Houwelingen discusses Bucharest public space from the perspective of Theodor Paleologu.

“From the point of view of my own – Dutch – art practice, I am aware of the importance of both fine-tuning and a strategically challenging approach to these relations. Invited to art projects in a foreign public space, a visiting artist most likely reacts on the local situation. I wish to change this practice by reflecting this “situation” upon a visiting artist, by asking a politician, a businessman and a priest to walk with me through the city, showing and explaining Bucharest’s public space – its meaning, its value. This way, I will visit the city three times, seeing it from three very different perspectives, each with their different interests – during the dialogue, I will question the artistic, economical and political matters, from a foreign artistic perspective. “

Hans van Houwelingen (born in 1957) finished his studies at the Minerva Art Academy in Groningen (The Netherlands) and at Rijksakademie van Beeldende Kunsten, in Amsterdam. His works are internationally manifested as interventions in public space, as well as exhibitions, lectures and publications in which he investigates the relationship between art, politics and ideology. He created several exhibitions and permanent projects in the public space. Van Houwelingen lives and works in Amsterdam.                                                                                                                     

Theodor Paleologu studied philosophy at the Sorbonne University of Paris and he is a doctor in political philosophy of the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales and of the University of München. He was a fellow of Harvard College, Notre Dame and Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin and he taught at the College of Boston, Deep Springs College, the European College of Liberal Arts of Belin and the University of Copenhagen. He was an ambassador of Romania in Denmark and Iceland and also a Minister of Culture. He is currently a deputy and president of the Paleologu Foundation.

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 GAZETA STIINTEI / Matei Bejenaru

Calea 13 septembrie, nr 13, in front of the House of the Romanian Academy.

November 2nd until November 15th

“The project “Gazeta Ştiinţei” aims to bring into focus the condition of the scientific, rational knowledge as a promoter of progress and emancipation in the Romanian contemporary society. After 1990, in post-communist Romania, there has been a process of deindustrialization, in which the scientific research, a priority for the former political regime, had been considerably reduced. In the field of education, the interest for the exact sciences had diminished as well; the tendency was to reduce the number of classes of biology, physics and chemistry and have them be encompassed by the ”umbrella” term of Science in the context of an increase in influence of the hours of religious education. Things became hilarious when biology teachers in high schools or universities became supporters of the creationist theory to the detriment of the evolutionary theory, thus defying the scientific reality.

Meanwhile, the Romanian public space is overloaded with religious processions and moralizing practices and messages, the Romanian Orthodox Church holding a leading role in the media discourse along with that coming from the economic field of consumer society.”

Matei Bejenaru is an artist and initiator of Periferic Biennial in Iasi, Romania (www.periferic.org). Established in 1997 as a performance festival, Periferic transformed into an international contemporary art biennial defined as a platform for discussions on the historical, socio-political and cultural context of Iasi. Together with a group of artists and philosophers from Iasi, Matei Bejenaru founded in 2001 the Vector Association, a contemporary art institution which supported the local emerging art scene to become locally and internationally visible.

As an artist, he is socially engaged in analyzing the way globalization affects post-communist countries labor force and rapidly changes mentalities and lifestyles. Since 2010 he is developing the project Songs for a better future, a series of choral performances dealing with the perception of the future in different social and cultural contexts. Matei Bejenaru was a visiting professor at University of Quebec in Montreal during the academic year 2011-2012.

Between 2012-2013 he was an associate artist at Kettle’s Yard Art Center in Cambridge, UK.

More details can be found on the artist website: www.mateibejenaru.net

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COMMERCIAL SCULPTURES / Hester Oerlemans

The artist Hester Oerlemans invites you to explore Bucharest public space from another perspective, by transforming the unused advertisement billboards, stripped of their message and function, into monochrome artworks.

“Commercial sculptures” can be seen on Calea Moşilor nr.77, from October 21st until November 4th 2015, and the postcards can be found at MNACSeneca Anticafe and Libraria Cartureşti Verona.

Hester Oerlemans is a Dutch artist who lives and work in Berlin. She came to Berlin in 1999 with a stipendium for Künstlerhaus Bethanien. She studied at the Graphic School Eindhoven (NL) and at the Art Academie in Arnhem (NL).

The mixing of different worlds, playful interventions and commentaries on everyday reality are the main themes in the work of artist Hester Oerlemans. Leaving no medium unexploited, she consistently shows a perception of the world around her which is both poetic and critical.

Since 2010 she runs the project space OZEAN in Berlin.

Recently exhibited at Museum of Modern Art, Arnhem (NL);Hamish Morrison Gallery, Berlin; Art Center Diepenheim (NL); Sommer und Kohl Gallery, Berlin; Autocenter, Berlin; Nationalmuseum, Berlin.

Permanent artworks in public space recently completed: Floating Carpet, PGGM, Zeist (NL)Round Schijndel, Schijndel (NL)Flip Clock, ROC, Hengelo (NL)

She won the 2nd prize for a commissioned artwork at the Bundestag Berlin and the 3rd prize for a commissioned artwork at the Neubau Landtag Potsdam.

www.hesteroerlemans.com

www.ozean-berlin.com

The fifth edition of Expanded Space is financed by Centrul de Proiecte Culturale al Municipiului Bucureşti – ARCUB, through the programme “You Are Bucharest”, Administraţia Fondului Cultural Naţional and the Embassy of the Netherlands in Romania.

Partner: MNAC,  Bucharest AiR

Media partners: Radio GoldFMthe Zeppelin magazineWebCulturaVeiozaArteArtClueModernismVernisaje

Team: Judit Balko, project manager, Aurora Király and Mihai Balko, coordinators.

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Expanded Space is a public art program which brings the public space to life through temporary interventions that includes a whole range of artistic practices, from sculpture or installation to performance. Grounded in the conviction that art is not only made public by its location, that its public dimension bears social and political connotations and rests on the choice of issues it investigates or debates, the program encourages the development of a new vision of Romanian public art, becoming a platform for critical thinking and dialogue.

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