artists & participants
"It’s not about being against the institution. We are the institution. It’s a question of what kind of institution we are, what kind of values we institutionalise, what forms of practice we reward, and what kind of rewards we aspire to." –Andrea Fraser, "From the Critique of Institutions to an institution of Critique" (2005)
Somewhere in Between is a large-scale collective project that initiates a challenging dialogue and subtle interaction between the institution and independent art scenes, as if they were two sides of the same coin. BOZAR, the Brussels Centre for Fine Arts, has given carte blanche to Brussels-based art spaces Etablissement d’en face, Komplot and La Loge, and to KASK School of Arts Ghent and its Kunstenbibliotheek and students of Curatorial Studies, to present a series of projects. In concert with Kim? Contemporary Art Center (Riga) and Bunkier Sztuki Gallery (Kraków), BOZAR also invites curator Michal Novotný (Futura, Prague) to shed light on today’s Eastern European reality.
The art world is expanding, not only geographically and economically, but also at the level of its practices, the hybridisation of positions, the blurring of roles and the models of social and cultural interaction. As an established art institution at the heart of Europe, BOZAR is examining this evolution. In this way Somewhere in Between becomes a critical reflection on its own operation. The exhibition gathers a multitude of independent art practices from all over Europe, lending a voice to the complex realties of non-institutionalism, paving the way to these diverse, often fragile but interconnected art worlds. The exhibition and the public programme collect stories, experiences, relations and encounters from a wide spectrum of artists, curators, writers, performers and other engaged individuals. It invites its audiences to engage with funky, extravagant, noisy, colorful, ecstatic new ways to address diversity, collectivity and vulnerability.
An invitation to share space and time, Somewhere in Between looks at the future of artists’ diverse practices and asks participants and the audience to think of the current state of affairs of the independent art scenes, its spaces and its players. The exhibition is a meandering reflection on exhibition making, artistic production, discursive exchange and transborder encounters. The participants take their own practices and wide-ranging European networks as a starting point.
Etablissement d’en face presents Tutti frutti with, in order of appearance, a fourth and final display of the Brown Period by Steinar Haga Kristensen, a sweat pants shop presentation by Life Sport and the installation by Abel Auer titled Our ignorance of history causes us to slander our own times. La Loge takes the occasion to reflect on its format, practice and attitude and as a result debuts LOOK, a series of publications. The first issue, titled Lodged-in-Voices, specifically responds to Bozar’s proposition as it raises concerns related to language and space, emerging from the practice of running an institution that works, houses, lodges, talks, produces and cares. The curatorial collective Komplot invites several curators from its European network to present a personal selection of artists and to speak and create on insularity and togetherness, resulting in Disorder. The students of the postgraduate Curatorial Studies programme at KASK School of Arts Ghent set out to map "emergent creative scenes in Europe," while the Kunstenbibliotheek at KASK focuses on a display of artist books, magazines, zines, ephemera and other printed matter published by small or independent publishers, artists or writers. With Orient Michal Novotný stages a drama that takes the viewer through five genre scenes following the historical dialectics of what he calls "an unclear region." He questions pride, patriotism and nationalism and the region’s development since the end of 1980s.
On June 20, BOZAR presents Variations on Vulnerability, an evening of time-based projects that proposes a meditation on the power of vulnerability. Through a series of compositions, musical and dance performances, readings, lectures and roundtables, the event sees artists, curators, and researches propose different narratives and interpretations of fragility. Curated and moderated by Elena Sorokina and Aria Spinelli.
Curatorial Team: Sonia Dermience, Antony Hudek, Michal Novotný, Els Roelandt, Anne-Claire Schmitz, Kathleen Weyts, Etienne Wynants
Partners: Etablissement d’en face, La Loge, Komplot, KASK School of Arts Ghent, Kim? Contemporary Art Center, Bunkier Sztuki Gallery
A BOZAR exhibition organized in the framework of the European project Trauma & Revival