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Monday - Friday:
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The Man at the Border

24 January 2017 > 03 February 2017 Kindly invited to the opening of group exhibition " The Man at the Border" on Tuesday, 24th January, at 8 pm, at the Alkatraz Gallery. The exhibition will be opened by director of Austrian Cultural Forum mag. Marie-Thérèse Hermges.

Participating artists: Gino Alberti, Kati Bruder, Beli sladoled, Ana Čigon, Karin Maria Pfeifer, Tomaž Furlan, Nika Oblak & Primož Novak and Sula Zimmerberger.
Curated by:
Vasja Nagy and Jadranka Plut.

The exhibition is a part of cooperation between Alkatraz Gallery and flat1 gallery.
We would like to thank for the suport of Austrian Cultural Forum Ljubljana.

The inquiring about the concept of border seems to be a never-ending quest for identity and understanding of relations with the other. It should suffice to look at the art of the previous centuries where human being is placed on this side and interpreted as visible, definite, and mortal and still unsteady even in the most schematic perception. In renaissance he is someone who peeps behind the mystical curtain while trying to grasp essence of God, in romanticism on the other hand gazes in to distance, across the hazy horizon above the globe, and behind which expects unimaginably great power of Nature to reside. Modern age change perspective on time and everything seems to be absent and present at the same time. The future, the past and the present seem to influence each other by laws of physics, not mythical/mystical principles. The identities of persons are not simply given, but everyone chooses or creates them in every moment of their life. The position on the chess-board can be changed by sliding the cursor on slider of size relations. It is possible to choose between being a pawn or rule over the kingdom in all sides like queen. Similarly it is possible to play roles which are projected from histories of past, future and present. A modern human understands the difference between a metropolis based on newest technologies with robots and 3-dimensional simulations and a prehistoric village, where one can rely only onto own hands and spiritual connection with other beings. The limit of the known is constantly present and it is one’s own decision on which side of the edge to put the foot. A border is always of the one who marks it on the map of life and it is not about what lays behind.

Selected artists from Slovenia and Austria are active in different fields of art and create in a various techniques. Specific to all is crossing borders or in some cases walking on the edge, which doesn’t occur in a formal way, this is today hardly possible, but in the sense of content. The artists constantly examine the known and walk a step further. They widen their own personal story through which, the culture that is common in a civilization is widen as well. And especially it is the examined the question how much can a human be human, before is dehumanised. Be it in body or spirit.

The exhibition The Man on the Border is conceived as an open, observant and pondering platform about borders that we are setting nowadays in a symbolic as well as physical sense and in this way reflects wider contemporary artistic and social phenomena. The artworks are addressing the issues of the quotidian; of artistic research and the system we are integrated in, modes and conditions of production as well as a wider social reality that the artists render by the means of various media and contents.

The latest works of Gino Alberti evolve from postcards and other photographs of seascapes. He draws in charcoal the surface of water and the atmosphere of sky. The two elements are sometimes calm, sometimes turbulent and not always in the same emotion. The works are like a repetitive contemplation on life and confrontations between various thoughts and emotions. Under the image the artist writes sentences that accentuate the state of that particular fleeting moment of creation through sadness, fantasising, reproach, daring questions and demands, and other thoughts that seem trivial and unusual at the same time.

Kati Bruder’s series Wir anderen offers almost a private view into small communities in our society. The photographer stands in front of open door and people are returning their look while being aware of exposing a bit of their privacy. The doorway is the most public space of a home but it still shows the individuality and personality of the inhabitants who are posing for the photograph in the way they want to present themselves to the others.

The documentary of Ana Čigon, entitled Heroinat / Herojke discloses the borders of a social status and the role of women through the narrative of setting up a monument to all women in Prishtina, Kosovo, in 2015. The artist is posing herself a question of who monuments are raised for and what identity they communicate, as »I have found realized that they are honouring a very narrow strip of history, from which women and numerous other social groups are being excluded«.

Tomaž Furlan with his interactive device Wear XV, one of the twenty-four artworks of the decade-long Wear 2005-2015 project, composed of video performances and objects, sets a border between the today’s notion of the body and an interface. With the works of Tomaž we find this interface to be a physical object operating without any technological devices, dictating simplicity and recycling of waste materials from which the so-called machine/object is put together and functions as a device facilitating human daily work/chores. “The Wear project is an attempt to fight against banality with silliness. Of course it is a failure, however, at the same time also absolutely necessary for us, in order to remain as human as we possibly can,” says the author.

Nika Oblak and Primož Novak explore the border of the integration of an artist or every individual into the wheels of social and personal powerlessness. The video entitled The Scream, alluding to the modernist Munch’s painting of the same title from 1908, sets into the fore – no longer the image of a suffering human backed with the red sky – but the subject and its incapability to be quiet and the need to express the confines of one’s own position into the social machinery.

In the work Bedwars Karin Maria Pfeifer digs into the virtual world of Minecraft computer game. She takes out a block, the form of the basic graphic and building item and reproduces it on drawings and physical objects. This building block in Minecraft has its origin in physical world and it represents a simple 3-dimensional object in an imaginary space. By using it to build abstract forms in the gallery space the artist switches between the virtual and the real and puts to test perception of space and various realities.

For Beli sladoled/White Ice-Cream as a world-famous artistic group, the outset is directed into development of the drawing as an autonomous artistic medium. The drawing functions like an open space, opening the borders of creating and offers endless modes and possibilities to upgrade the artistic form. By simple means such as lines, by the technique of collaging the images on unconventional surfaces, the two artists assemble and design their narratives. It is here that they have found themselves, as the medium of drawing enables them the liveliness, incompleteness, openness, and upgrading of artistic form that they – in their own world of creation – do not perceive as a confined space, but as a space of infinite modalities and possibilities.

In her video collage Mankind Dreams Sula Zimmerberger dreams are treated as a vision of a possible reality. Visualisation in any form brings the vision closer to realisation and it is constantly pushing the border between imagination and reality further. Many fantasies from fiction novels or artworks of the past are today taken for granted as simple tasks or facts like flying or communication in great distances. They are consequences of development of technologies but on the other hand is their origin in the impulse to reach for the unreachable.

Jadranka Plut & Vasja Nagy

Ana Čigon completed her undergraduate studies in Painting and postgraduate studies in Video at the Ljubljana Academy of Fine Arts and Design. She also received an MA in Interface Cultures in University for Art and Industrial Design (Kunstuniversitat) Linz in Austria. She mainly works in the areas of video and performance. In her latest art projects, she is dealing with feminist topics, history, memory and also focusing on the issue of underrepresentation of women.

Tomaž Furlan, born in 1978 in Kranj. After finishing secondary school I signed Academy of Fine Art in Ljubljana Where he studied sculpture. He's mostly interested in video and performance but like not to exclude any art technique witch has the possibility to carry the wanted message. He lives in and work in Ljubljana, Slovenia.
Project Wear was presented on solo and group exhibition in Slovenia and abroad. Such as: solo exhibitions in gallery P74 and Alkatraz in Slovenia and group exhibitions in Slovenia and abroad such as: Book of artist, Slovenija 1966–2010, Gallery Kresija, Videospotting in Videodokument in Gallery 3,14, Bergen Norway 2008, Parallel worlds, AKC Metelkova Mesto, 2009, Limited acces II, Parkingallery in collaroboration with Azad Gallery, Tehran 2009, In the loop: Contemporary EU video art, Washington USA (2010), Word for Word, without Words, City Art Museum, Ljubljana 2010, Manifesta 9, Genk Belgija 2012, Biennal Exhibition Multimeridian '12, Pula, Croatia, U3, MSUM Ljubljana 2013, The Present and Presence, MSUM, Ljubljana 2014, Port Izmir 14, Izmir Turkey 2014, Technical Unconscious, Porto Portugal 2014, Tomaž Furlan 2005 – 2015, Museum of contemporari art Rochechouart, France, Sesto Award 2015, San Vito al tagliamente Italy 2015, Crises and New Beginnings: Art in Slovenia 2005–2015, MSUM Ljubljana Slovenia 2016.

Nika Oblak & Primož Novak have been working as an artist's collective since 2003. In their art practice they examine contemporary media and capital driven society as they dissect its visual and linguistic structure. Oblak and Novak have exhibited worldwide, in venues like the Sharjah Biennial (AE), Japan Media Arts Festival in Tokyo (JP), Istanbul Biennial (TR), Biennale Cuvee in Linz (AT), Transmediale in Berlin (DE), at the Alexandria Biennale for Mediterranean Countries (EG), FILE in Sao Paulo (BR)... They received numerous grants and awards, including the CYNETART Award by the Trans-Media-Akademie Hellerau in Dresden (DE).

Beli sladoled: Miha Perne – born in Ljubljana, in 1978. In 1997 he completed the Secondary School for Design and Photography (Ljubljana), course photography. In 2004 he graduated in painting from the Academy of Arts and Design, Ljubljana. In 2005, he formed the painting collective Beli sladoled with Leon Zuodar. In 2011 they established together the Beli sladoled books and zines publishing house and in the same year they received the OHO Group Award for their works. Perne is active in painting, graphic arts and comics. He gardens.

Leon Zuodar – born in Postojna, in 1977. Having completed a secondary school in Postojna, he graduated in painting from the Academy of Arts and Design, Ljubljana in 2004. In 2005, he formed the painting collective Beli sladoled with Leon Zuodar. In years 2007−2009 he was a member of the art collective/project Art of Asfalt. In 2011 he established together with Leon Zuodar the Beli sladoled books and zines publishing house and in the same year they received the OHO Group Award for their works. In 2014, Zuodar also joined the programme organising team in Pivka House of Culture. He skateboards.

Karin Maria Pfeifer is independent visual artist since 1994. She studied in Paris, India, Israel and Palestine, further studies with Prof. Frohner. She is a member of Künstlerhaus and Ig bildende Kunst art associations in Vienna. Her artworks are part of notable public and private collections. She regularly presents her works to international art audience. She lives in Vienna and Lower Austria.

Sula Zimmerberger was born in 1970. She studied graphic design at the Academy of fine arts in Vienna and painting with Prof. Hubert Schmalix. Additional education in France, Germany and south-eastern Asia. Since 1998 she regularly presents her works at personal collective and exhibitions in Austria and abroad.

Kati Bruder graduated from History of art at the Graz University and in 2015 obtained master's degree at the Academy of fine arts in Vienna. She photographs people who can be from outside perceived as groups based on spatial or living conditions. Through her research she learns about societies that formed from different causes; some by chance, some from self organizing, some temporary etc. People are asked to pose in their dwellings with the entrance door open while she stands outside.

Gino Alberti was born in the Dolomites in 1962. He studied art and design in the Leonetto Cappiello Academy in Florence. He lives and works in Bruneck (South Tyrol) and Vienna. Most typical for his work are large format drawings although he sometimes expresses himself with installations as well. In his drawings, he uses two prevailing approaches. The large format drawings present mainly monochromatic landscapes which resemble the 19th century art of painting. The drawings feature mighty and idealised scenes of nature, hills and sea, without human figures. The images are covered with slogans, names of places and poetic statements which appear like incidental aphorisms. As for the artist’s other drawings, their style is much closer to strip illustrations. Faces, figures, animals, plants and objects are accompanied by short texts or statements which seem to be an intimate expression, a reaction of the artist’s instant emotional state of mind when looking at the painting. The atmosphere is often associated with uneasiness and gives the impression of an imaginary, surreal world.

Vasja Nagy, freelance curator and critic of visual arts. Graduated from history of art at the Faculty of Arts (University of Ljubljana, Slovenia). Since 1997 he is active as a curator in the field of contemporary visual arts. In the years between 2001 and 2008 was employed as Curator for Contemporary Art at Obalne galerije Piran (Gallerie Costiere Pirano), Slovenia and from 2004 to 2006 involved in gallery Galerija Zapor in Koper, Slovenia in position of Art Director and Curator of exhibitions. Since 2008 works as freelance curator. Since 1999 regularly publishes articles on contemporary visual arts. His theoretical and practical interests are mostly inclined towards Photography and curatorial practices. In 2006 he received The photographic exhibition of the year reward for curating the exhibition Intimno/Intimate. He is a member of Slovene Association of Art Critics. Since 2012 lives in Vienna and works anywhere.


Beli sladoled (White Ice Cream), 2015 Beli sladoled (White Ice Cream) Tomaz Furlan, Wear XV, metal, wood, polyurethane foam, 2013 Tomaz Furlan, Wear XV, metal, wood, polyurethane foam, 2013 (foto Robert Ograjensek) Nika Oblak & Primoz Novak, The Scream, 2015, 60'' LCD monitor_video installation Nika Oblak & Primoz Novak, The Scream, 2015, 60'' LCD monitor, video installation Ana Cigon, Heroines Heroinat (15'30'', 2015) Ana Cigon, Heroines Heroinat (15'30''), 2015