27 May 2020 > 19 June 2020 You are kindly invited to a group exhibition "FemLink-Art: Agression and Wonder video collages" by curator Veronique Sapin. The exhibition is on view from Wednesday, 27th May from 11 am at Alkatraz Gallery, ACC Metelkova.
FemLink-Art is a collective of visual artists, established by C. M. Judge (USA) and Veronique Sapin (France/Canada) in 2005. FemLink explores new forms of artistic networking and transnational collaboration; furthermore, its aim is to help artists with harder working conditions and less exhibiting opportunities. Until now, 145 artists from 63 countries, with over 300 works contributed to the creation of a collective piece of art, composed of video collages, thematising various concepts. The founders of FemLink-Art contend that 'for a long time, the aesthetic criteria were characterized by forced limitations and dominated by principles of exclusion, legitimacy, and hierarchy;' the project was founded as a political answer to challenge overlooked female artists and inequalities in the world of art, and to foster networking. It works in the way that the founders invite artists to contribute their own perspectives on a specific collage topic without any limitations, except for the temporal one – the video cannot be longer than two minutes.
The Alkatraz Gallery shall confront two topics of video collages – Aggression and Wonder – created by 44 artists, who were chosen by one of the collective's founders, the curator Veronique Sapin. Although the themes appear to be diametrically opposite, they – with the help of videos, harrowing and diverse in artistic approaches – question the reality, offer critical thought on the present, and reveal what is ordinarily overlooked. Both videos have already been featured in the Photon Gallery in the context of Video evenings, organized by Kolektiva. Among the authors of the collage Wonder is also a Slovene artist Vesna Bukovec, with her video entitled You Can Do It!, whilst the collage Aggression features a Slovene artist and curator, Ana Grobler, with the video titled Fable.
Exhibiting artists: Evgenija Demnievska (Serbia), Vouvoula Skoura (Greece), Luzia Simons (Brazil), Viviana Berco (Argentina), Hiroko Okada (Japan), Sara Malinarich (Chile), Evelin Stermitz (Austria), Ingrida Pičukane (Latvia), Sabine Mooibroek (the Netherlands), Véronique Sapin (France), Maria Rosa Jijon (Ecuador), Tayeba Begum Lipi (Bangladesh), Amaranta Sanchez (Mexico), Eva Koch (Denmark), C. M. Judge (the USA), Alessandra Arno (Italy), Tanja Koistila (Finland), Maria Dominguez Alba (Spain), Ana Grobler (Slovenia), Elaine Frigon (Canada), Alena Kupčikova (Czech Republic), Seema Nusrat (Pakistan), Mesrure Melis Bilgin (Turkey), Anna Titovets (Russia), Ligia Bouton (Brazil), Dagmar Kase (Estonia), Laura García (Mexico), Susana Pilar Delahante Matienzo (Cuba), Zuzanna Janin (Poland), Vesna Bukovec (Slovenia), Ayesha Sultana (Bangladesh), Maria Papacharalambous (Cyprus), Loes Heebink (the Netherlands), Amina Zoubir (Algeria), Cagdas Kahriman (Turkey), Patricija Gilyte (Latvia), Carolina Saquel (Chile/France), Angelika Rinnhofer (Germany), Itziar Barrio (Spain), Liang Wei (China), Diana Yun (Kazakhstan), Cecilia Vignolo (Uruguay), Jelena Mišković (Serbia), Chantal du Pont (Canada).
Véronique Sapin lives and works between France and Singapore. She studied art history, journalism, and history in France, and linguistics and video art in Canada. Since 1994, she works as a video artist, creating in the fields of video, video installations, and photography, which offer space to contemplate on human experience and vulnerability. As a feminist artist, she frequently tackles the position of women in her artworks. She has exhibited at over 250 exhibitions in more than 40 countries around the world. She is also an independent curator. With the American artist C. M. Judge, she founded FemLink-Art in 2005, an international collective of female artists, unique in its scope and length. FemLink-Art is a video composition, composed of (so far) twelve thematic video compositions, encompassing approximately 300 artworks. Since it premiered in America in 2006, these video collages have been presented in more than 150 artistic centres, museums, galleries, and festivals. At the 10th anniversary of FemLink, a comprehensive catalogue of FemLink artists and their works was published. In 2007, UNESCO financially supported the project, but otherwise the project is rarely funded by institutions, since it exceeds public calls' frameworks.
More about FEMLINK-ART
AGGRESSION: The video-composition from FemLink-Art
Twenty-four FemLink artists were invited to create a video on the topic ‘aggression.’ As with each new theme that FemLink proposes, artists are entirely free to interpret it as they wish. Their only instruction is to answer the question: 'What does this topic mean for you?'
While violence is profoundly present in the artists' work for centuries, contemporary art abandoned the ‘positive’ relations with it (mythicized representations in violent narratives, theatrical sublimation, gestural energy, etc). The pervasive and explicit violence in our culture is often glamorized in contemporary art and media. The FemLink videos develop a creative response – a set of ‘proposals’ that stage objects or real bodies that emphasize the results of violence, often metaphorically. The videos in the collage do not sanctify the morbidity of violence and never place us in front of a realistic depiction of violence.
While some videos transcend the horror through storytelling (FABLE, Ana Grobler), other videos use the aesthetics of representation in a kind of ritualized detachment from reality, in order to convey the truths that are best expressed through artistic telling of a story. (AGGRESSO, Luzia Simons (Brazil); X ON THE SHORE, Hiroko Okada; PLENTY TO INSPECT, Tanja Koistila).
The impact of a life and death wish in some of the videos strongly invokes in us the feeling that we are alive, and opens the way to a process of liberation (SCREAM, Ingrida Pičukane; EXORCISM OF THE AGGRESSION, Maria Dominguez Alba).
Some artists made the provocative choice to speak about violence with frontal events (SILENCE, Evelin Stermitz; IT FEELS LIKE YESTERDAY, Sabine Mooibroek; VIOLENCE, Evgenija Demnievska), while others by showing metaphorical bodily scars to denounce the oppression (IMPLOSION, Mesrure Melis Bilgin; SELF CELL AGRESSION, Anna Titovets).
Some videos denounce interpersonal violence (DOMESTICA, Amaranta Sanchez; LA COCINA, Viviana Berco), while others address a traumatic event as a way of redemption from pain through remembrance (AGGRESSION, Lilian Chizoba Pilaku; ANGER WRESTLES ANGER, C. M. Judge).
Videos are also the mirror of our time. The weight of history with its conflicts is central to the work of some artists who deal with the present violence of the state (IN MEMORY OF A 15-YEAR-OLD BOY, Vouvoula Skoura; BITE, Alessandra Arno; DEMOCRACY? Maria Rosa Jijon) and the violence within the society toward people (JUNE’S LACE #1, Eva Koch; WATCH LA GAME, Élaine Frigon; DEAD LETTERS, Véronique Sapin). Mirror of our time too, when we feel subjected by medias which are biased and which misinformed us (AGONY, Tayeba Begum Lipi) or simply when we have to respond to imponderables which limits our freedom TRAVERSALS, Seema Nusrat.
Ultimately, poetry and humanity triumph over darkness and suffering. Poetry and humour offer relief and redemption, and help surmount the personal and historic weight of the tragedy (YO, CAROLINA, Sara Malinarich; CATACOMB, Tayeba Begum Lipi; ENOUGH IS ENOUGH, Alena Kupčikova).
More about works
Aggression video collage - original curatorial statement
WONDER: The video-composition from FemLink-Art
Twenty-four FemLink-Art artists were invited to create a video on the topic ‘wonder’. As with each new theme that FemLink proposes, artists are entirely free to interpret the theme as they wish.
WONDER presents a re-examination of the word and its possible interpretations from an artistic perspective, which can reveal or glorify that which can escape us in the reality. What emerges from the 24 videos of this composition is that the wonderful fact is not wonderful in itself; rather, it is wonderful as it relates to its context of reality. The videos offer to us a wonder, which applies this relation to a reality, whatever it is: the most ordinary and the most short-lived.
The artists explore their conception of this topic by many means. The first way is the evocation of universal elements by objects, with simple and unpretentious processes. (WE WATCH YOU - Susana Pilar Delahante Matienzo; ROUND TRIP, Cagdas Kahriman; BLUE, Liang Wei; WONDER, Cecilia Vignolo; VISAGES, Chantal du Pont).
For some artists, the topic wonder questions desire; it is a form of attitude, conduct, and, at the same time, food for thought (SUB-ZERO YOGASAN, Patricija Gilyte; DEEP WONDER, C.M.Judge).
Some other artists, emphasizing the relationship between wonder and life, interpret the topic of wonder as delight and surprise, in the same way Platon defined it; according to this author, ‘to be amazed’ (Greek: dia to thaumazein) is at the origin of the philosophy (Theaetetus, 155d). (WONDER BODY, Ligia Bouton; GROWING PAINS, Angelika Rinnhofer; CIRCLE, Alessandra Arnò; WONDER, Maria Papacharalambous).
There is also a certain way of looking and of glorifying the daily life, the simple things, the ‘inframince’ (WONDER, Ayesha Sultana; ORCHESTRAL JOURNEYS, Alena Kupcikova; THE GOLDEN HOUR, Loes Heebink; UNTITLED (CUERO), Carolina Saquel). The daily life can be transformed by ordinary acts of solidarity and compassion. The WONDER can be found in what we are able to accomplish for others. (THE REASON FOR HOPE, Véronique Sapin).
In addition, wonder allows us to question our ability to accept the unexpected, the mysterious, and the incongruous: unusual questions not divested of critical faculties and, nevertheless, essential. (YOU CAN DO IT!, Vesna Bukovec; GAME / HOSPITAL OF TRANSFIGURATION, Zuzanna Janin; IN WHAT WORLD DO YOU WANT TO BE BORN? Amina ZOUBIR; ASIAN DIKE, Diana Yun; SKILIFT, Jelena Miskovic; INCENDIO GARUDA (A necessary death), Laura García; KALEIDOSCOPE OF THE REAL, Dagmar Kase; KRYPTONITE, Itziar Barrio).
The videos included in this composition work as a polyphonic orchestra inviting us to better glimpse how the fundamental reality of ‘wonder’ can touch us personally, in the depths of our being.
More about works
Video collage Wonder - original curatorial statement
Véronique Sapin, curator and coordinator of FemLink-Art