10 September 2014 > 26 September 2014 You are cordially invited to the "Mosaic of creative Metelkova - collective project", a cooperation of Alkatraz Gallery and artists of Metelkova and other events of 21st anniversary of ACC Metelkova, on Wednesday, 10th September 2014 from 12.00 onwards.
This is the third year that we are continuing with a more extensive exhibit-research project that includes the history of a specific »Metelkovian« visual scene, world, and production, created intro muras of the Autonomous Cultural Centre Metelkova City (ACC Metelkova City). We started the research in collaboration with a team from the World of Art (SCCA-Ljubljana; Center for Contemporary Arts) back in 2011, and its first presentation was realized in 2012 at the 19th Anniversary of the ACC Metelkova City. We named it the Mid-Stop, for it was meant as a between stop of the investigation into the process of activity of visual artists in Metelkova. The emphases were put on the inclusion of all artists and uncovering of specific conditions and diverse methods of their operation within the ACC Metelkova City. Exhibitions, open art studios, public discussions, screenings, and interventions into the Metelkova public space gave the artists an opportunity to present themselves with practices emphasizing the heterogeneity of of their operation.
In 2013 we directed our research to mapping of historical memory and development of the visual and wider artistic practices intertwining with a constant changing and upgrading of the site over the past decades. The Exit Stop project, as we named it for the occasion of the 20th Anniversary of the ACC Metelkova City, got its meaningful title in the sense of continuation and upgrading of the research that we had undertaken at the Mid-Stop. We pursued the living organism of the ACC Metelkova City space, perceived as an artwork, whose outset is unfinished, ongoing work – continuous upgrading of its visual appearance and the process – or work-in-progress. »ACC Metelkova City have, its users, with their architectural, constructional, artistic and crafty interventions into its public space and the exteriors of the buildings, turned into Metelkova gesamtkunst work«1, as Saša Nabergoj stated in her art-historical analytical paper entitled Gesamtkunstwerk Metelkova City, published in the Paper for Critics of Science, Fantasy and New Anthropology (Časopis za kritiko znanosti, domišljijo in novo antropologijo), entirely dedicated to Metelkova.
Incorporated in The Exit Stop project was an exhibition entitled Metelkova Revived! (Metelkova oživljena) in the Alkatraz Gallery, where a visitor could listen to historical memory, revived and shown in 27 video essays comprised of interviews with deserving artists of Metelkova in their intimate, subjective stories. A stroll over the 20-year long development of the continuously changing image of the ACC Metelkova City was enabled by archival photographs on the gallery walls. Beside the exhibition, we brought back to life a legendary staging of an auction of artistic artefacts, with the popular auctioneer Goran Medjugorac-Gogi, revivified the Secret Lodge of the Alive (Tajna loža živih -TLŽ), in detail inventoried visual interventions with photographic material, open studios, various workshops, and guided tours of artistic interventions in public space. In the Project Room of SCCA, and their newly arranged garden, a remnant of the latest Studio 6, Liminale Association OFFTIR project a tea-house and reading room for archive documentation on Metelkova came to live.
On the eve of the 21st Anniversary the interviews, which are already available in the physical archieves of SCCA - Ljubljana & KUD Mreža, are moving to the web. SCCA - Ljubljana team, will each week announce one interview on the World of Art's Curatorial and Critical Studies programme website. We would like to make video essays as accessible as possible on the world wide web and as well as "digitize" the 21st birthday of ACC Metelkova. Last but not least to honor the history of Metelkova, personal history of artists and creators, subjective views and diversity of narratives.
Video essays with ACC Metelkova mesto artists (in Slovene).
This year’s projects for the 21st Anniversary, a Mosaic of Creative Metelkova (MzUM), that came about as a collaboration between the Alkatraz Gallery team and the ACC Metelkova City artists, is a synthesis of the previous two, as it is, from its start oriented to investigation into different forms of collective creation of individuals, who usually employ pronouncedly individual approaches. The ACC Metelkova City is a space, already from its very beginning nurturing specific creative procedures; its visual appearance is explicitly a fruit of collaboration among numerous individuals and groups of diverse proficiency and skills.
We have, partially, borrowed the title of the project from the text of Andrej Morovič, Stones in a Mosaic of Urban Guerrilla (Kamenčki v mozaiku urbane gverile). Mosaics have, over all these years, literally become a protective mark of the ACC Metelkova City from any outside interventions into the space, and a symbolic image of the entire public space. Mosaic workshops and singular interventions that have been spreading over the façade of Stables (Hlev) building since 1997, represent a synonym for collective creativity, where each individual contributes a stone into this symbolic mosaic. “The idea was simple: should the endangered facades be protected with artistic mosaics, their demolition might be rendered difficult. The pulling down has, somehow, sunken into oblivion, whilst the mosaics have stayed and spread...“2
A group of artists will be laying pebbles in a mosaic of creativity in the Alkatraz Gallery at the exhibition of a working title Alkatrash (Alkatreš). The exhibition’s concept is construction of common identity and self-awareness of Metelkova as a collective space. Unlike the previous group exhibitions, the current artists will blur their individual poetics, and create a collective intervention, composed of various materials, gathered at their studios. Recycling shall once more step out to the fore as a principle and a necessary condition for establishment of one’s own form of activity. The curatorial engagement is based on a decision that the authors have free hands at their creation and arrangement of the space; the final outcome is completely unknown - a consequence of the work-in-progress approach. The work method that we have set up together is an attempt to encourage spontaneous collective creativity with no curatorial interference by abstract theoretical concepts.
Beside the exhibition at the Alkatraz Gallery, there are two more exhibition-type projects within the MzUM project; The Tower (Stolp), a sculptural installation of Jaka Mihelič and his colleagues will be displayed at the smallest, Ch0 Gallery, while the Sleep of Reason exhibition by a tandem Damijan Kracina and Vladimir Leben, will be shown at the Night Shop Window Gallery Pešak (Nočna izložba Pešak) in Infantry (Pešci) building.
The smallest gallery in Slovenia is a project of g.rupa (g.roup), an artistic collective founded in 2004. The collective has three members: young and promising contemporary artists Jaka Mihelič and Miha Žorž, and a philosopher Boris Vlajič. They have decided their first collective project will be to set up the smallest gallery in Slovenia, following the example of the smallest gallery in the world, in Auckland, New Zealand. While searching for the most suitable location for the realization of the idea, the initiator of the idea, Jaka Mihelič, came to an agreement with the Channel Zero Club at the ACC Metelkova City that the gallery be placed at the club space in the wall by the club entrance. The decision that favoured a club as a gallery space helped to avoid several bureaucratic challenges of setting the gallery in an outside urban environment. The objective of the gallery’s outset programme is to fulfil the main condition that an artwork to be placed into the exhibition space does not exceed the size of 45x25x19 cm. (Recorded after the talk with the initiator, Jaka Mihelič)
The Night Shop Window Gallery, in Infantry (Pešci) is a collective project of those artists whose art studios are on the first floor of the hall of the mentioned building. After materials used at art studios had been piling up for several years, an informal group of artist have organized themselves into an artistic board of the gallery (Damijan Kracina, Vladimir Leben, Terrah, Mitja Ficko, Jaka Mihelič and Božo Rakočević) and decided to clear the rubble off their stuffed corridor, and make it into a slightly different gallery space. The space distinguishes itself from most other galleries that we know in that we enter it in a role of a voyeur, with an aid of a binocular, set up on a special viewing platform in the tower in the ACC Metelkova City yard, observing artworks through the windows, without entering the gallery physically. The binocular is an artistic installation, made and set up by Metelkova artists during one of their joint actions of arrangement of public space. At the moment, the gallery is hosting a tandem, Damijan Kracina and Vladimir Leben, and their Sleep of Reason exhibition. Please find out more about the gallery and its programme on their website http://pesakpesak.wordpress.com/page/2/
Once more various visual interventions into public space, unfolding at an individual level or within the long-lasting Urban Projects of Visual Art initiative will be at the forefront. In Hajlends park, wood-work masters Rok Barborič, Miroslav Matek and Miran Pešič-Pešo will set up a wooden sculpture Spider (Pajek). Mitja Ficko will paint a Reflection (Odblesk) of Metelkova sun on the western outer wall of Gromka Club together with a group of collaborators. This time the stress is put on collective work, manifesting most prominently in the mentioned projects. Artists of diverse knowledge and skills are linking up, and continue upgrading a collective action in a collective spirit. Artistic interventions interlace with crafty skills and products, making up the integral image of the public space of Metelkova with their thoughtful placement and functionality.
This year’s workshop Let’s paint the Tower (Pobarvajmo stolp), conducted by Tina Drčar, is set as an inclusive experiment, for it will include outer visitors from different marginal groups hanging around the ACC Metelkova City. In this way each of them will have an opportunity to contribute his or her own pebble into the mosaic of redecoration and completion, and will help change the understanding of relationship towards public space. Art studios as intimate work spaces offering no access to general public, will at the occasion be open to a group of a younger population of kindergarten children, who will, together with a wood-craftsman Dejan Pfeifer-Stripi get to know wood as a material various products are made from.
To general public, at the 21st Anniversary of the ACC Metelkova City, we offer an insight into various pebbles of the mosaic of creativity, representing the fruit of the labour, persistence, perseverance, self-sacrifice and uniting of different groups and individuals over all these years.
1Saša Nabergoj, Gesamtkunstwerk Metelkova City, in:Paper for critics of science fantasy and new anthropology, volume. XL, 2013.
2Andrej Morović, Pebbles in the mosaic of urban guerrila, in Metelkova mesto, U. Toman, L. Drinovec (edit.), p. 2, Ljubljana 1998
Programme (Wednesday, 10. September) :
9.30 - Alkatraz Creativities: Woodworking workshop in cooperation with kindergartens and schools, by Dejan Pfeifer - Stripi, Garages (Garaže) building, artist's studio. Programme of Alkatraz Creativities is supported by Javni sklad republike Slovenije za kulturne dejavnosti.
From 12.00 - north yard of ACC Metelkova mesto in front of the Viewing Tower, Let's Paint the Rocket workshop a part of Alkatraz Creativities, by Tina Drčar. Programme of Alkatraz Creativities is supported by Javni sklad republike Slovenije za kulturne dejavnosti.
18.00 - Hajlends park, presentation of wooden sculpture Spider, by Rok Barborič, Miroslav Matek & Miran Pešič (wooden sculpture is a part of Urban Projects of Visual Arts (Urbani likovni projekti).
19.00 - west exterior wall of Gromka Club, Hangar building, presentation of wall painting Reflections, by Mitja Ficko (wall painting is a part of Urban Projects of Visual Arts (Urbani likovni projekti).
20.00 - Channel Zero, The Smallest Gallery Ch0, Infantry (Pešci) building, opening of sculpture installation The Tower.
21.00 – Alkatraz Gallery, Stables (Hlev) building, opening of group exhibition Alkatrash (working title), on display until 26th September.
22.00 - Nočna izložba Pešak Gallery, Infantry building (Pešci), opening of exhibition Sleep of Reason, by Damijan Kracina and Vladimir Leben, on display until 10th October.
Full programme of 21st ACC Metelkova mesto anniversary can be found here (in Slovene).
Cooperating artists: Rok Barborič, Edvin Dobrilovič, Tina Drčar, Boštjan Drinovec, Mitja Ficko, Tomaž Furlan, Meta Kastelic, Neven Korda, Borut Korošec, Marko A. Kovačič, Damijan Kracina, Vladimir Leben, Miroslav Matek, Silvo Metelko, Jaka Mihelič, Rajko Miladić, Rok Mohar, Boštjan Novak, Miha Perne, Miran Pešič - Pešo, Dejan Pfeifer - Stripi, Terrah, Uroš Weinberger.
Curatorial team: Ana Grobler, Sebastian Krawczyk, Jadranka Plut.
Assistants: Nevena Aleksovski, Anabel Černohorski, Danijela Zajc.
Photos taken at the opening of Alkatrash exhibition by Sunčan P. Stone. Other photos by Ana Grobler.