Exhibition POINT 0 is a presentation of projects of four renowned artists Paweł Althamer (PL), Krištof Kintera (CZ), Szabolcs KissPál (HU) and Ilona Németh (SK). The authors will present artistic concepts in which they react to the specific area of the Freedom Square (Námestie slobody) in Bratislava.
Their designs for realisations of sculptures or artistic interventions are based on current trends, and offer progressive forms of art in the public space of the capital city.
The initiator of the POINT 0 project is an association called Verejný Podstavec („Public Plinth“) whose aim is to take a position on the difficult situation in transformation of public space in the countries of former East Block through artistic events. For this reason the members of this association invited significant contemporary artists from Poland, Czech Republic, Hungary and Slovakia in order to reflect freely on one of the largest squares in Bratislava. POINT 0 has a wider european context, because artists form the states of the V4 deal with similar confrontations of arts and politics, or art and society in their own countries as well.
The exhibition in Krokus Gallery is the first phase of the POINT 0 project. The completed designs will gradually be presented as a part of the second stage of the project of the Freedom Square during 2012 and 2013. POINT 0 aims to set up live reality and situations on the square, waking it up to a new reality. This space, mostly connected to the sculpture of Klement Gottwald and the oversized malfunctioning fountain Družba will become a free zone for art through its contemporary artistic interpretation. Point 0 offers a new view of the past, but mainly becomes its starting point - initiation.
After more than twenty years since the Velvet Revolution, the area of the Freedom Square is left unchanged. It is a place surrounded by the buildings of the Government Office, Post Palace and the building of Slovak University of Technology. These monolithic and key buildings for Bratislava make up the quadratic shape of the square where „the time has stopped“. During its history, it became the stage for many political and community events, it was affected by the representations of various ideologies and a „witness“ to many political rituals. Freedom Square is the square of our collective memory. In 1991, the sculpture of Klement Gottwald was removed, and at the moment, a placement of a sculpture of Ľudovít Štúr is considered (current location of this sculpture is near Danube river, where placement of a replica of sculpture of Empress Maria Theresa is planned).
Paweł Althamer (*1967, PL) is one of Poland's most significant contemporary artists. He exhibited in the prestigious shows Gwangju Biennale, Documenta Kassel, Venice Biennial, Manifesta 3 Ljubljana, and important institutions like Centre Pompidou in Paris, Ludwig Museum in Köln, Modern Art Oxford. His sculpture, installations and performance connect the interest in everyday reality and its changes. Through interventions and actions in public space he changes the view of the reality, and puts the observer into unexpected situations.
Krištof Kintera (*1973, CZ) is an important Czech contemporary artist, graduate of the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague, scholarship holder at the Rijksakademie van Beeldende Kunsten in Amsterdam (2003-04) and a prizewinner of the Prague Biennale Prize in 2005. Kintera is a multidisciplinary artist connecting performance, theatre action, stage design and technologically challenging objects and sculptures. They are characteristic by communication and pulling the viewer into the realm of the artwork. Kintera also realised projects for public space, where he thematised the questions of his own privacy, or recoded the „lived“ visuality of objects that we naturally connect to the exterior of the city.
Szabolcs KissPál (*1967, HU) is a significant representative of the neo-conceptual tendencies of the current Hungarian art. He is the winner of Munkacsy Prize of 2008, Nam June Paik Award finalist in 2004 , and the winner of the Henkel Art Prize in 2002. In 2001 he exhibited at the Romanian Pavilion on the 49th Venice Biennial. In his intermedia works, videos, installations, objects and photography he deals with the current questions of society and politics, historical contexts and their influences on an individual.
Ilona Németh (*1963, SK) belongs to the most reflected female artists of central Europe. In 2001, she exhibited along with Jiří Surůvka at the Czechoslovak Pavilion of the Venice Biennial. She is a co-founder of Studio Erté, and 2003 Ludwig Museum Budapest Prize winner. Since 2004 she is in charge of her own Studio IN at the Academy of Fine Arts and Design in Bratislava. Her works are part of important local and international collections. In her work she makes installations, performance art and public art while examining the questions of social and gender inequality, collective memory, cultural significance of public space and its transformation after 1989.
Verejný podstavec o.z. was founded in 2010 by sculptors Dalibor Bača, Tomáš Džadoň, Michal Moravčík and Martin Piaček. It is a continuation of the initiative What sculpture in the city? (2006), and the petition Stop cultural politics in our cities! (2006). Verejný podstavec is a platform for free ideas for public space.www.verejnypodstavec.com.
Accompanying events during the exhibition
6.9.2011 3 p.m. Press conference with participation of the artists and project founders.
6.9.2011 7 p.m. The exhibition opening with presence of the authors.
1.- 2.10.2011 Gallery Weekend (part of BLAF festival), the gallery is open from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
2.10.2011 14.00-16.00, KROKUS ART LUNCH – Verejný podstavec and a guided tour of the exhibition.
3.10.2011 15.00-18.00, Panel discussion POINT 0 with authors and invited art theorists.
4.10.2011 10.00-12.00, Workshop for schools (part of BLAF festival).
5.10.2011 15.00-18.00, Wine route through galleries (more on our website and www.blaf.sk).
Project was supported by
Foundation Intenda, Endowment Fund Slovak Telecom and the Ministry of Culture of Slovak republic
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