What you are doing right now?
Currently I’m curating Rudi Ninov’s exhibition ‘Voice Lines’ for his solo booth at the Art Brussels fair. We’re creating an artist catalogue which will represent his works and visions. This works evoke a variety of associations that can be related to written language, symbols, heard sounds or simple musical visualizations. The exhibition is also an homage to Vesselin Sariev’s visual poetry from the 80s and 90s and it will reveal Rudi’s unfolding relationship to abstraction from two distinct but adjacent perspectives – one that is the formal and other the personal. The works will be presented in curated environment including the exhibition gesture “The Carpet” – my curatorial suggestion for a meeting place in every art installation. It is an alternative to the traditional idea of a gallery, museum etc. Everyone is invited to sit down on the carpet, regardless if they are visitors, artists, curators or collectors, which creates an egalitarian and open-minded environment. This is a concept inspired by a metaphor by the artist Luchezar Boyadjiev and developed into an ongoing project by me, presented in LamdaLambdaLambda Gallery, Pristina, Sarieva/Gallery, Plovdiv and in Manifesta’s podcast.
In Sarieva/Gallery we’re currently showcasing the solo exhibition „Бейж“ (Beige) by the young 25 years old American artist Aaron Roth. The show discusses typical Balkan issues such as corruption, politics, the mafia and its very specific “luxurious” aesthetic which is quite popular amongst some particular social groups. The exhibition is part of the gallery’s discovery concept, which consists of helping young artist find more exposure. I’m also working with Pravdoliub Ivanov on his upcoming exhibition at Sarieva/Gallery which is always very exiting and inspiring.
After two years of working hard with collectors we’re close to opening a new hot spot for art and urban living in Sofia called DOT. It will be located in one of the capital’s most colorful and lively areas, a food and spices market which is known for its ethnic diversity.
What comes to your mind in connection with contemporary art when you hear the word “deadline”?
The pandemic was the ultimate dead-end of the deadline. This reminds me of one of Stefan Nikolaev’s most emblematic works, “Deadline”, which he created during the first lockdown in 2020 for our project #sarievisolation. This is my first association on hearing the word “deadline”. It was a time during which everything was postponed over and over again, the deadline never came, until the deadline turned into a new beginning and a restart for the art scene.
Who are the 5 CEE artists / works of art that come to mind when you hear the word above? \you mean “deadline”?/
The works I’ve chosen are filled with hope and humor which is very typical for their creators. All five of them are men but it’s not an intentional choice.
Nedko Solakov’s work “The Visit” tells the story of a human visiting the sun and trying “to stay cool” while asking an important question. I’d like to imagine that this question is about prolonging human kind’s deadline.
The piece called “You are…” presents us with the flipped backwards words “… on the wrong side”. Pravdoliub Ivanov’s works always talk about the truth and the possibility of there being another truth, timeline or way of making things happen. His name itself derives from the world “Pravda” which means truth. I’d like to believe that the deadline is not anxiety ridden but a very natural and genuine moment of happening.
I already mentioned Stefan Nikolaev’s “Deadline”. It talks about the final deadline – the long list of names of people who died around the world during Covid but it also discusses the end of Covid and the beginning of something better and full of hope.
Kamen Stoyanov’s work ‘We own this shit’ shows what the will for creation and meeting the deadline turns into. The artist carries the neon lettering around with him, shedding light on problems such as failed investments and speculation. The sign brings back the sense of belonging, power and will for change to the people.