Survival Kit project

August 26, 2009

Survival Kit

Open : 12 september 19 september

“Survival Kit” maršruts

“Survival Kit” maršruts aizsāksies Vecrīgā ar izstādi “Laika gars un vietas atmosfēra” Rīgas Mākslas telpas “Intro” telpā, izstādēm “Dari pats!” galerijā “Supernova” un “Vietējais laiks” galerijā “Carousell”, turpināsies tukšo veikalu un kafejnīcu telpās divās galvenajās Rīgas iepirkšanās ielās – K. Barona un Tērbatas – un noslēgsies ar izstādi “Brīnišķīgais ceļojums” bijušās VEF rūpnīcas teritorijā.

“Projektu rosināja acīmredzamas norises mūsu pilsētā – divās no visaktīvākajām Rīgas ielām viens pēc otra pazūd veikali, kafejnīcas un citi pilsētas infrastruktūras elementi. Mēs aicinājām māksliniekus padomāt par mākslas izdzīvošanas komplektu šajos apstākļos. To vidū būs instalācijas un gleznas, video darbi un animācija, mail art, fotogrāfijas, komiksi un kolāžas, performances, grāmatnīcas, latvisks “ielas ēdiens”, filmas un recycled modes kolekciju demonstrācijas. Mēs rosināsim skatītājus piedalīties radošajās darbnīcās, kā arī iesaistīties diskusijās ar māksliniekiem par iespējām ietekmēt krīzes situāciju,” TVNET projektu raksturo Solvita Krese, “Laikmetīgās mākslas centrs” direktore.

„Survival Kit” is international art project, in whose framework artists will be asked to reflect upon a variety of survival strategies in the modern world. Currently, this theme is actively preoccupying the minds of the global community and it has also become especially topical in Latvia. The present situation is characterised by the fiasco of liberal capitalism, the collapse of the economy, threats to the ecology and escalation of regional conflicts. Waking up from a perpetually cultivated euphoria causes re-evaluation of habitual system of values and reconsider „the sense of life”. The world is experiencing huge changes, but it is not clear whether they are for better or worse.

The absence of either clear vision or a prognosis for the future increases uncertainty and paralysis. So what is the scenario for future developments? There are various options available; hopelessness and total crisis, or creative approaches and the opportunity, through experimentation, to give the present situation a new and positive quality.

What can artists do in this situation? Develop adventurous experiments and iniciate creative explosions to use advantage of the present situation. If there isn’t an appropriate moment for heroic narratives and representative events they could focus on exploration of everyday poetics, marginal footnotes, spontaneous manifestations and interventions. With minimal resources they could achieve surprising results by implementing DIY praxis, arte pover, ready made resources, performance and other activities, which will provide the basis for a collective experience. The artists are invited to contribute unusual strategies, innovative suggestions or unusual recipes for the survival kit that would help us to cope with the present situation.

The artists are invited to focus on the changes in the city’s environment, to meet in creative ghettos, where the artistic spirit is still alive. To occupy the empty shop spaces and fill the void, created by the economic crisis, with creative energy. They should act as mobile units which could actively respond to changes in the situation or, the exact opposite; they could create a safe haven, in which to weather the hard times. Perhaps it is just the right time to stop, escape from „workaholism”, find time to reflect and realise that the economy must become ecologically sound, food must be healthy, industry must be efficient and effective, and politics must be transparent and responsive to the community.

The project’s nexus will be the two main shopping streets in Riga, where, one after the other, shops, cafes, and other elements of the city’s infrastructure, are closing down. The artists will create their projects in these empty spaces – they will exhibit their works, organise performances, and encourage the public to participate in interactive activities, as well as initiating discussions about how artists can influence the city’s development; thus trying to find especially innovative solutions, that could be realised given the difficult climate created by the economic crisis. The remaining creative activities will take place in the so-called TAZ (Temporary Active Zone) areas, on the property of the former VEF factory, where a decidedly large group of artists has installed their workshop, and in the former market group of warehouses, in which a number of artist groups are actively pursuing their art. Not only is ‘Survival Kit’ trying to find solutions and offering strategies for the successful weathering of the global crisis, but it is also striving to react to the changes in the city’s environment, identifying both examples of purposeful gentrification, and following up the results of spontaneous initiatives.

Participating Latvian artists:  Eriks Bozis, Kristians Brekte, Bolderaja group, Izolde Cesniece, Evelina Deicmane, Ieva Epnere, Kristaps Epners, Ivars Gravlejs, Kristaps Grundsteins, Voldemars Johansons, Raids Kalnins, Linards Kulless, Galka Kulio, Liga Laurenovica, Karlis Lesins, Elina Lihaceva, Baltic Comics Magazine KUŠ!, Anete Melece, Katrina Neiburga, text group Orbita, Ingrida Picukane, Kriss Salmanis, interdisciplinary arts group SERDE,  Ineta Sipunova, Eizens Valpeters, design group “ZAFTE” (Inara Gauja/ Ingrida Zabere), Margita Zalite, Kriss Zilgalvis.

Also foreign artists have been invited, who would reflect a spectrum of wider creative approaches and ensure an interaction of various points of view which would promote the exchange of ideas and help to foster successful cooperation and avenues of communication, whilst strengthening the sense of solidarity. These include Alexander Vaindorf (SE), Henrik Duncker (FI), Marius Engh (NO), Boris Mitic (SRB), Theo Mercier (FR), Vladimir Arkhipov (RU), Valtteri Puyhonen (FI), SKART (SRB), Minna Hint (EE), Maija Pale (FI), Ruedi Schorno (CH).

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