KIBLA PORTAL Valvasorjeva ulica 40 Maribor, Slovenia
MATERIALITY IN THE PORTAL
The Materiality exhibition features fifty artists; the majority of the participating artists are Slovenian, accompanied by international guest artists, invited on the basis of the selection of artworks connected to the theme of the exhibition. In the curatorial vision, the artworks embody a subjective vision of contents within a wide diapason of authorial poetics.
Because any selection is inherently fragmentary, the curators deliberately avoid such encyclopaedic pretensions as the aspiration to form new canons, dogmas and trends. A constellation of works is set in an informal and relaxed dialogue, softening stifling conceptual dictates, freeing a subjective stream of thought on which new relations between the artworks and the authors can float.
Participating artists from Slovenia: Zdenka Žido, Kamila Volčanšek, Petra Varl, Iva Tratnik, Damijan Švarc, Jože Šubic, Jane Štravs, Jože Slak Đoka, Duba Sambolec, Branimir Ritonja, Vlado Repnik, Peter Rauch, Mark Požlep, Ervin Potočnik, Borut Peterlin, Mojca Oblak, Živko Marušič, Ira N. Marušič, Polona Maher, Laibach, Benjamin Kreže, Damijan Kracina, Jasna Klara Kozar, Rudolf Kotnik, DK, Aleksij Kobal, Jaša, Matej Jarc, Marko Jakše, Zdenko Huzjan, Meta Grgurevič, Metod Frlic, Vadim Fiškin, Dušan Fišer, Mitja Ficko, Elena Fajt, Sandi Červek, Andrej Brumen-Čop, Rajko Bizjak, Saša Bezjak, Goran Bertok, Emerik Bernard, Nataša Berk, Boris Beja
International guest artists: Karina Smigla-Bobinski, Vlasta Delimar, Oliver Pietsch, Goran Tomčić, Martina Zelenika-Moon and Jule Ja Kantor.
This exhibition is a guerilla-style curatorial project of Aleksandra Kostič and Žiga Dobnikar, rejecting established curatorial order, and was brought to life through a dynamic dialogue between an older nostalgic curator and a young emerging curator. The exhibition emerges at the node of three determinants: the definition of content, the selected artworks and the exhibition space.
The selection of artworks is based on a mixture of five substantive guidelines, through which both the Slovenian and foreign artworks were selected:
1. materiality itself as pure, touchable matter, and the micro-perception thereof, 2. perception and reflection of external, sensory and mentally perceptual world, 3. substantiality of the living body, the body as an object, and world of things, 4. entropy and decay of matter, transitions into other states, 5. combination of the material and the immaterial into unified body, and the immaterial as essence of the material.
An important aspect of the exhibition are the selected works of art – the established canon of Slovenian and international art, works of young, ambitious and promising authors and some almost forgotten and overlooked artists. The initial selection, narrowed throughout the process of conceiving the exhibition, included the names of one hundred and forty Slovenian artists and a special list of accompanying international artists.
The two-thousand square meter industrial space with its columns makes possible a free-breathing presentation of the works, which, because of their physical dimension, often exceed usual exhibition possibilities. The vintage hall, remodelled and renovated, is a part of history, imbued with lost worker identity, and in and of itself sets and directs the presentation of artworks. The reappropriation of this type of space is also a reminder of the (un)considered opportunities of Slovenian industrial heritage, which is often degraded or demolished in the name of purported development, and whose future is uncertain.
Unavailability of individual archives and the current state of affairs prompted activism, research and a guerilla approach. Materiality is a manifesto, a statement on the necessity of ambitious action regardless of the harsh circumstances in which culture and art in general is perceived as redundant and unnecessary.
The Materiality exhibition is part of a two-year project, linking four European partners – WYSPA Institute of Art / Gdansk, Poland, VESSEL / Bari, Italy, Instituto Polytechnico de Tomar, Portugal, ACE KIBLA / Maribor, Slovenia – for the purpose of exploration of materiality in contemporary visual culture and art. Inspired by the industrial environments of Gdansk, Guimarães, Maribor and Bari, each partner institution understands the art quite differently, because art postulates dictate specific a cultural environment and local contemporary trends. The project was established in 2012 within the framework of the European Capital of Culture Maribor 2012, continuing in 2013.
The exhibition will be open until 15 September 2013, from Tuesdays to Saturdays between 11:00 and 19:00. Admission free.
The Materiality exhibition is part of the European project Materiality and is financially supported by the European Commission, Program Culture, Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Slovenia and the Municipality of Maribor.
This communication reflects the views of the author(s). European Comission is not responsible for any use of the information contained in the text.