to share : dzielić się : partekatu
The idea behind this collective initiative undertaken in an abandoned furniture restoration studio at Ruska 46 is sharing of a space. Four artists from three European cities – Karla Tobar from Bilbao, Nagore Legarreta from San Sebastian, Ewa Głowacka and Gabriela Kowalska from Wrocław – present their works created during their residencies in different parts of Europe.
The artists were working separately, but their paths crossed here, at Ruska 46. The tampered “tissue” of the studio, which was covered with manifestos and works related to their artistic projects, has changed its character, binding it with the cities the artists were exploring. The main challenge faced by the exhibition organizers was how to achieve the synergy between four different types of activities. Thus the works are accompanied by the data collected during residencies. The results of the artistic collaboration include also a space-experiment in which actions and tools blend in, creating a polyphonic but coherent narrative about the city seen as a shared space. An extremely important aspect of the exhibition is also the spatial arrangement, which was commonly deliberated on step by step.
On the one hand, the exhibition refers thus to the cooperation between the European Capitals of Culture. On the other, it makes us think about the urban context of artistic activities, the responsibility that the cultural operators bear for the city and its resources, and the relationships between cultural institutions and independent artists.
Residencies of Ewa Głowacka, Gabriela Kowalska, Karla Tobar and Nagore Legarreta were organised as part of the Artist In Residence Programme AIR Wro.
The exhibition “City as a shared space” is realised by the Wroclaw 2016 Office in cooperation with the Etxepare Basque Institute in the framework of the “City and Culture” conference.
“City and Culture” is a three-day conference for cultural practitioners and theoreticians, prepared jointly by the Wroclaw 2016 Office, the University of Wrocław and the Municipal Office of Wrocław, as a result of the evaluation process of the European Capital of Culture Wrocław 2016. “City and Culture” programme consists of an academic part that will be streamed online, as well as open workshops, debates and meetings with cultural creators.
The exhibition will be open from 21 to 24 September 2017. The entry is free.
On 21 September, the exhibition will be open from 20:00 till 24:00.
On 22-24 September, the exhibition will be open from 14:00 till 20:00.
Karla Tobar is an artist and researcher associated with the University of Basque Country (UPV / EHU). She has published scientific articles, delivered lectures at international conferences and participated in a number of exhibitions at museums and art centres in Europe and the Americas. In her work, she explores the influence of technology on the art’s viability and its potential in the realm of artistic production. She believes that an accidental human-machine encounter may give rise to brand new aesthetic processes. During her stay in Wrocław, the artist keeps on developing the project she started last year in Bilbao. Its main objective is to generate an artistic activity that will allow for the alternative perception of public space and architecture. The Wrocław project is dedicated to the specific elements of the cityscape – bridges. At the beginning, Tobar researches historical events and structural changes that affected the bridges. Then, she involves a local artist in a performative event during which they both explore the city using a DIY scanning device of Tobar’s design. The material collected during this walk is subsequently used by the artist to create an installation piece consisting of a video documenting her artistic activity in Bilbao and Wrocław, and two large pictures presenting her photos taken in both cities.
Nagore Legarreta is a graduate of the Audiovisual Communication at the University of Basque Country (UPV / EHU). She became interested in photography while working for the local newspaper ” Hernaniko Kronika” (2003-2009). Since then, she has been exploring the world of photography both as an artist and as a teacher. She has chosen pinhole photography for her favourite means of artistic expression. Her works have been exhibited at a number of art centres and during many events, including Photoespaña 2016, the Saatchi Gallery (London), Muestra de Arte Joven de La Rioja, Koldo Mitxelena Kulturunea (San Sebastian), Le Bel Ordinaire (Pau) and Gran Canaria Foto 2016. She is also an author of a book “Editopia” (2011, published by Banizu Nizuke). In Wrocław, the artists continues her project started in San Sebastian and dedicated to the river Urumea. The starting point for the current activity is the Odra, a silent witness of Wrocław’s war destruction and rebirth processes. Legaretta gives river the opportunity to present its view on the city and its residents by installing floating tin pinhole cameras on its surface.
Ewa Głowacka is a graduate of a number of schools, including the Eugeniusz Geppert Academy of Art and Design, the University of Wrocław and Universidad del Pais Vasco in Bilbao. On a daily basis, she works as a graphic designer. During her residency in Plzen in 2016, she networked with some informal art groups operating “on the outskirts” of the cultural sector, acting either alongside or in opposition to large institutions. As a result, a zine “Parallel Structures ” emerged, based on data, information, and interviews that she had been collecting and developing over the two months of her residency. What we learn from the zine is that the grassroots movements in Plzen are mainly realized on a micro scale, whereas financial support is granted most often to large cultural institutions, whose programmes confine to art and culture defined in a traditional way. The alternative scene in Plzen is smaller and less promoted than the one in Prague, and in most cases it has to rely on its own resources. Yet, it was able to benefit from the energy of the European Capital of Culture (Plzen wore the title in 2015), which provided underground artists with some infrastructural and financial support, and initiated an open debate on culture and its management processes. Already in 2016, Głowacka decided to continue her research in Wrocław, where the topics of the European Capital of Culture’s programme and the role of the independent scene were especially urgent. Based on a series of interviews with people responsible for the Wrocław’s cultural landscape (some of the interviews being made already after 2016), Głowacka managed to depict the relationship between the local authorities and the underground art scene. The collection consists of meditations, dialogues, cooperations, critical opinions and conflicts.
Gabriela Kowalska is a graduate of the Wrocław Academy of Art and Design, a winner of scholarship granted by the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage, a designer and curator. In 2016 she lived in San Sebastian, which – like Wrocław – wore at that time the title of the European Capital of Culture. During her stay, the artist was working on the project “What can I do for you”, which integrated art and design with sociology. Based on sixty interviews and observations, she prepared a final installation presenting the Basques, focusing on their needs and expectations about their lives and neighbourhoods. This year, Kowalska has come back to her research, focusing on one particular district of Wrocław – Szczepin. Her work enables us not only to have a closer look at Wrocław on a micro scale but also to compare individual desires of Szczepin’s residents against the common needs of Wrocław and Europe.