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12th Youth Biennial: Would It Be Late If Time Stopped?

28/02/ 2018 – 28/03/ 2018

 

The overall concept around the Biennial is directed toward research, reevaluation, and analysis of the phenomenon of lateness (the quality of happening after the expected time in regard to the historical development of the societal conditions in this country) seen in the frames of the art system and art paradigms as well as the way this phenomenon has been reflected in all the segments of our society including the educational, exhibition-related, production-related, the performative ones, etc. Having this in mind, the concept of lateness imposes one question: is it too late to reevaluate, continue or stop a long-established tendency in art expression or is it time to think about new strategies and perspectives?

 

Instead of directing the focus toward the development of visual art in comparison to the current movements on the international scene, it has been directed towards the conditions of the development of thought, the creation and transfer of knowledge, as well as the social role of art in the local context. Therefore, this concept, which will be elaborated within the frames of the discursive program of the participants from the region, within the presentations of the artists, the discussions, and the curators’ reviews included in this catalog, is based on the following questions: How is knowledge produced in conditions of prolonged inertia and institutions network blockage and underdeveloped non-institutional scene? How can this situation be overcome with inadequate technical and staff capacities for institutional memory maintenance, and simultaneous creation of historical awareness? What are the main obstacles for developing conditions for critical perception of the past and strategic projection of the future? How could we encourage youth politics/policies which will inspire the youth to transform the general apathy and create integrative platforms and solid culture-related strategy?

 

The Biennial of Young Artists is a logical continuation to the five-year-long event “Contemporary Macedonian Artists – Young Generation”, which started in 1967 as a response to the needs of the developed scene through an introduction of a strong-selection approach in presenting and satisfying certain defined criteria. During its existence until 1987, the organizers of the event detected various topics and directions to act: from the attempt at giving an overview of the basic indicators for development of art, to thematic exhibitions, following one general idea for (self)critical competition, well-defined and representative art vocation, to a presentation with high values and qualitative specification. Developing into a biennial event, the first four editions (1987-1993) provided the authors with the opportunity to conceptualize their own work in relation to ex-Yu and world movements, as well as in relation to the development of disciplines. In 2001, at the 5th Biennial, it was decided that a general image or a panoramic overview of the relevant movements in the art scene or young authors should be offered. That scene, created in relation to the socio-political occurrences in this country should be additionally completed with foreign artists and students from the Faculty of Music Arts (from 2005), and thematic specifications and relevant questions of the curators and organizers should be also added to the whole concept of the Biennial.

 

The 12th Biennial of Young Artists frees itself from the frames of strictly-defined exhibition practices in an attempt not only to present a selection of artists with their individual perceptions and current interests though visual production, but also to locate the problems which they face in conditions of non-existence of a sufficiently clear and stable contextual framework. Works of twenty young artists will be exhibited. All artwork has been created in the past few years, i.e., artwork created in the period from the last edition of the Biennial of Young Artists until now, conceptualized in the context of the artists’ presentations and the international discursive program used as the basis for defining an experimentally comparative field.

 

One of the goals of the Biennial is to show that there is a constant vigor on the institutional margins in terms of production and forms of self-organization created by young artists from the local scene. When there is a disintegrated and defragmented art scene, the need to look closer at the tendencies, and the encouraged and motivated energy of the young artists is emphasized. Specifically, it is important to understand whether that energy is directed towards their integrative positioning as socially aware and socially incisive individuals capable of creating and broadening the collaborative space or towards an isolated, individual creation of personal strategies, with uncritical approach to the already established modernity or market-driven success of the western prerogatives in an indefinite network of realization without criteria? This condition, which results from the interelation with the artistic nomadism, which today, apart from “looking for inspiration”, is equally conditioned by economic reasons, imposes the question: What are the prospects f young artists and culture workers, taking into consideration the unsuitable work conditions, isolation from connections and networks of galleries, the unequal distribution and concentration of knowledge, resources, funds and other factors forming the “power relations”?

 

The final point, and perhaps the most important one, is if we can finally get sure that it is really never too late for reconstruction and defragmentation, and if in some foreseeable future the active participants on the art scene, both within their individual work and in their attempts to achieve mutual cooperation, while keeping the relation(ship) with the institutional network which is a necessary condition for development and quality exchange, will be able to feel at home and on time.

 

Curators of the Biennial:

Ivana Vaseva, Bojana Janeva-Shemova, Vladimir Janchevski

 

Artists:

Darko Aleksovski, Barski Braca (Marko Janev and Filip Velkovski), Dimche Dimeski, Ivan Durgutovski, Ana Jovanovska, Amir Karahasan, Marija Koneska, Bisera Krckovska, Ana Lazarevska, Jana Lulovska, Simona Mancheva, Marko Gutić Mižimakov, Ivana Mirchevska, Natasha Nedelkova, Dorotej Neshovski, Anasatasija Pandilovska, Vladan Petrushevikj, Ilija Prokopiev, Nikola Radulovikj, Goran Ristovski, Nikola Slavevski, Igor Tanevski, Nemanja Trajkovikj, Elena Chemerska and Zoran Shekerov

 

Participants in the regional discursive program:

Sofia Grigoriadou, curator (Athens, Greece); Adela Jušić, artist (Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina); Ivana Meštrov, curator (Split/Zagreb, Croatia); Danilo Prnjat, artist (Belgrade, Serbia); Ana Frangovska, curator (Skopje, Macedonia).

 

Regional discursive program and presentations by artists – participants in the Biennial of Young Artists

 

15.03 (Thursday)

17:30 – 17:50 – Introductory remarks by the curators

17:50 – 19:50- Presentations by the artists – participants in the

Biennial:

– Marija Koneska; Barski Bracha (Marko Janev and Filip Velkovski); Ana Lazarevska; Dimche Dimeski; Zoran Shekerov; Simona Mancheva;

Darko Aleksovski.

19:50 – 20:30 – Presentation “Permanently curious, some thoughts on art education and discoursive practices in contmporary art” by Ivana Meštrov (Split/Zagreb)

20:30 – 21:10 – Presentation “The story of the magical mirror” by Ana Frangovska (Skopje)

21:10 – 21:30 – Discussion with the two presenters and the artists

 

17.03 (Saturday)

17:30 – 17:50 – Introductory remarks by the curators

17:50 – 19:45 – Presentations by the artists – participants in the

Biennial:

– Bisera Krckovska; Jana Lulovska; Nemanja Trajkovikj; Vladan Petrushevikj; Ilija Prokopiev and Marija Hristova (PrivatePrint); Nikola Radulovikj; Nikola Slavevski; Goran Ristovski.

19:50 – 20:30 – Presentation “Artist talk and presentation of selected works” by Adela Jušić (Sarajevo)

20:30 – 21:10 – Presentation “TWIXTlab: an initiative between contemporary art, anthropology, and social reality, in the context of Athens today” by Sofia Grigoriadou (Athens)

21:10 – 21:30 – Discussion with the two presenters and the Artists

 

20.03 (Tuesday)

17:30 – 17:50 – Introductory remarks by the curators

17:50 – 20:20 – Presentations by the artists – participants in

the Biennial:

– Ana Jovanovska; Igor Tanevski; Dorotej Neshovski; Anasatasija Pandilovska; Elena Chemerska; Ivana Mirchevska; Natasha Nedelkova;

Amir Karahasan; Ivan Durgutovski; Marko Gutić Mižimakov.

20:20 – 21:00 – Presentation “Work (in art) – is change possible?” by Danilo Prnjat (Belgrade)

21:00 – 21:20 – Discussion with the presenter and the artists

 

Sofia Grigoriadu (Athens, Greece)

 

TWIXTLAB: AN INITIATIVE BETWEEN CONTEMPORARY ART,

ANTHROPOLOGY, AND SOCIAL REALITY, IN THE CONTEXT OF ATHENS TODAY

 

The publicity given worldwide to the so called “Greek crisis” seems to have rapidly turned Athens into a privileged, sometimes “exotic” destination for “crisis” tourists, as well as for many foreign artists, curators, anthropologists and other social scientists.

In this realm, documenta 14’s interest in “learning from Athens” brought the city into the spotlight of the international art world.

Meanwhile, an increasing number of collectives, artist-run spaces and independent projects have been emerging. Among them, TWIXTlab is a long term project, situated “between and betwixt” 1 contemporary art, anthropology and social reality. It adopts the form of a laboratory in order to propose or to support interventions in everyday life through workshops, seminars, screenings, presentations, discussions, and research projects. To better understand the complex and controversial role of documenta in the local context, TWIXTLab has initiated a two-year independent, international research program entitled “Learning from documenta”, in collaboration with several local and international partners. The program’s second phase, “Athens Arts Observatory”, aims to conduct a mapping of the contemporary Athenian art scene and a recording of its evolution.

In her presentation, Gridoriadou will briefly describe the context in which TWIXTlab was founded and is still functioning today. Discussing these two programs, she will also focus on TWIXTlab’s interests and activities in relation to Athens and the changes that have been taking place in the city, its image(s) and the artscene.

About

 

Sofia Grigoriadou is a Phd student in Social Anthropology (Panteion University, Athens). She holds an MFA degree from the Athens School of Fine Arts. She is a graduate of the A.S.F.A. (2013) and the Philosophical, Pedagogical and Psychological Department of the University of Athens (2006). She has participated in various exhibitions, conferences, research and artistic projects in Athens, Edinburgh, Istanbul, and Beirut. She has co-curated and co-organised artistic projects and exhibitions. She has organised and carried out artistic workshops and educational programs, worked with children with disabilities and taught at the A´painting workshop, ASFA. She collaborates with artists and anthropologists in the framework of TWIXTlab, an art project situated in between contemporary art, anthropology and the everyday.

https://sofiagrigoriadou.wordpress.com

 

1twixt: shortened version of betwixt, which means in between, neither the one not the other. The social anthropologist Victor Turner used the phrase betwixt and between in order to characterize the intermediate out of three stages of the rite of passage as ultimate transitional, subversive and creative moment of societies’ lifetime.

 

Adela Jušić (Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina)

ARTIST TALK AND PRESENTATION OF SELECTED WORKS

For the 12th Biennial of Young artists, Adela Jušić will talk about position of artist in Bosnia and Herzegovina, her experience at the international art scene, and present selection of her works from 2007 till present.

 

Adela Jušić (Bosnia and Herzegovina 1982) graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts, Department of Printmaking, University of Sarajevo in 2007 (MA), and holds an MA degree in Democracy and Human Rights in South East Europe from Sarajevo and Bologna Universities, 2013. Jušić has presented her work in more than 100 international exhibitions (Manifesta 8, Murcia, Spain; Videonale, Kunstmuseum Bonn, Germany; Image Counter Image, Haus der Kunst, Munich, Germany, Balkan Inisght, Pompidou Center, Paris). She has participated in many artists in residence programs (ISCP, New York; Kulturkontakt, Vienna; i.a.a.b. Basel, Museums Quartier, Vienna) and in numerous panels, workshops and conferences. She received the Young Visual Artist Award for the best young Bosnian artist in 2010, Henkel Young Artist Price CEE in 2011, and Special award of Belgrade October Salon in 2013. Her works are part of many private and public collections. She is a co-founder and has participated in cultural projects at the Association for Culture and Art Crvena, since 2010, and is one of the creators of the Online archive of Antifascist struggle of women of B&H and Yugoslavia. The artistic practice of Adela Jušić is permeated with her personal experience and memories as well as politics and feminist discourse. A lot of her work investigates historical violence against women, participation of women in the Antifascist struggle in Yugoslavia, recent Yugoslav wars, and the unpleasant reality rooted in them.

 

 

Ivana Meštrov (Zagreb, Croatia)

PERMANENTLY CURIOUS, SOME THOUGHTS ON ART EDUCATION AND DISCURSIVE PRACTICES IN CONTEMPORARY ART

This lecture will highlight some questions about the state of art education these days from the perspective of historical overview, as well as from personal experience as a lecturer of art history and theory within academia and informal and non-institutional educational frame (Curatorial platform program co-founded in 2008 in Zagreb, Mediterranea XVI-Young Artists Biennial Errors Allowed in Ancona co-curated in 2013, long term collaborations with Academies of Fine Arts in Split and Zagreb).

 

Ivana Meštrov is a curator and art historian from Zagreb, Croatia. Presently, she is a lecturer at the Department of Art History at the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences of the University of Split. She is one of the co-founders of Slobodne veze/Loose Associations contemporary art practices as well as of the educational platform Kustoska platforma/Curatorial Platform.

 

 Danilo Prnjat (Belgrade, Serbia)

WORK (IN ART) – IS CHANGE POSSIBLE?

The aim of the discussion “Work (in art) – is change possible?” is to open a conversation with the audience and participants in the context of the Biennial of Young Artists, on the subject of production relations within which the work of young artists is located, as this field is increasingly transformed towards the targeted “self-sustainability” based on work in creative industries or the production of a specific type of goods for the art market (art collections).

The conversation will include a brief introductory presentation with a reference to the historical framework within which the work of artists as a specific type of worker / producer is constituted in relation to the contextual determinations through which he passed. A dialogue form, followed by examples from the \ current ways of self-organization of artistic production will seek to uncover the mechanisms through which these dominant models operate. The purpose of the discussion is to jointly and collectively (as an only possible way to think about change) try to open a new work horizon in art which would involve work on social emancipation that will not reproduce existing political relations and will not be based on exploitation of any kind.

 

Danilo Prnjat (Montenegro 1982) is a visual artist who lives and works in Belgrade. He participated in many group exhibitions, conferences, conversations and implementations of (artistic) projects that explore the politics of participatory practices and collective work. In his work, he strives to overcome the established boundaries of art, as well as the relations between art and social reality through intervention in the field of economics. He is currently a Phd candidate in the final year of the PhD in Communication / Art and Critical Thought at the European Graduate School (EGS) in Saas-Fee, Switzerland. His critical work, based on the analysis of liberal culture, is published primarily on the portal “Dematerialization of art”.

 

Ana Frangovska (Skopje, Macedonia)

THE STOrY OF THE MAGICAL MIRROR

Once upon a time there were young artists from Macedonia who have always wanted to be reflected in the magical mirror in the city that gave all Macedonians different perspectives for themselves. Passing by the mirror, looking at it, they saw themselves as academically highly trained artists who had a lot of knowledge in multimedia, as an excellent basis for self-identification in art. Again, glimpsing in the mirror, they saw wide range of wonderful possibilities for cooperation with colleagues, curators, institutions, the Ministry of Culture, various cultural organizations. For the third time, the mirror showed how they travelled around the world without financial constraints and visited the most current and contemporary exhibitions, they communicated and became a part of significant artistic networks, creating works that did not show technical and technological impotence … the mirror offered many more glorious images, but it showed them a twisted notion and a great discrepancy between the expectations and the possibilities. The story of the mirror is only irony, but is it that the essence of the problems of the young artists lies in some of the cynical visions in the mirror and in the social context in which we exist, or it lies a little bit in their ambitions, their will and sacrifice?

 

Ana Frangovska (Skopje 1978) is a curator and a creative and dynamic art professional with fifteen years curatorial, educational and research experience in the contemporary visual arts. She works as a curator at the Macedonian National Gallery for the past ten years. She has effective public relations and presentations skills, and ample experience in written communication, planning and conducting art marketing campaigns. Selected international curatorial projects: ‘Essence of Existence’, exhibition of contemporary Macedonian art, Art Center Lauba, Zagreb, Croatia, 2015; ‘Utopia’, international conceptual exhibition, Multimedia center Mala Stanica, Skopje, Macedonia, 2015; ‘In Search of a Common Ground’ (together with Bojana Janeva – Shemova and Ars Acta), exhibition of eleven contemporary Macedonian artists, Center for Contemporary Art, Baku, Azerbaijan; ‘Transfiguration’ – conceptual group exhibition of Macedonian contemporary art, Czech Center Prague, Prague, Czech Republic, 2014; ‘Bread and salt’ – conceptual

group exhibition of Macedonian contemporary art, Porcia Palace, Vienna, Austria, 2013; ‘Silentiopathologia’, Elpida Hadzi-Vasileva, Pavilion of Republic of Macedonia at the 55th Venice Biennale, Italy, 2013; ‘Black and white or not’ group exhibition of Macedonian contemporary art, CAM Casoria Contemporary Art Museum, Napoli, Italy, 2013; ‘Perception’, MC Gallery New York, USA, 2012; ‘Crucial in choice” Flemish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Belgium, 2008; ‘Eastern neighbours’, Babylon Cultural Center, Utrecht, Netherlands, 2006; Retrospective exhibition of Nove Frangovski in Taksim Sanat Gallery, Istanbul, Turkey, 2006; ‘Art exchange’ 2004, Angels Gate Cultural Center, San Pedro, Los Angeles, USA, 2004; 10 Macedonian artists at the Autumn Salon, Paris, France, 2002, etc.

 

History of the Biennial of Young Artists

The Biennial of Young Artists organized by the Museum of Contemporary Art, Skopje, started in 1967, as two exhibitions titled “Contemporary Macedonian Painting-Young Generation” and “Contemporary Macedonian Sculpture-Young Generation”. Since then, until 1982, the Museum of Contemporary Art, Skopje, has been engaged actively in promoting and exhibiting the work of young artists. In 1987, the concept changed to the “Biennial of Youth” and kept this form at until 1993. Based on the selection process and presence of various artistic styles and media, the biennial has gone through several phases. In the period between 1993 and 2001, the Biennial was discontinued. In 2001 it was reestablished as a “Biennial of Young Artists”, presenting thematic research by young artists working during that period. Since 2011, some biennials have been including artists from the region, using the same selection procedure for both regional and local artists.

 

Until today, the Biennial of Young Artists has had 11 editions.The Biennial of Young Artists was based on the following goals of the Museum of Contemporary Art-Skopje

from 1987:

・ Presenting art values of the young generations of artists;

・ Equal representation of the work of young artists to art professionals and to broader audiences;

・ Following one of the greatest efforts of the Museum of Contemporary Art not only to present but also to witness the latest state-of-art practices at the contemporary art scene.

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