Latvian Centre for Contemporary Art

Exhibition symposium "Revisiting Footnotes I"
LCCA Office Gallery, Alberta 13, Riga
23.05.13 - 28.06.13

Like footnotes in a book, the footnotes translated in this symposium via exhibitions, discussions and performative events are kaleidoscopic but purposeful explanations of and additions to the main story of our recent past, dealing with various processes, artefacts, quotations, lifestyle details, mythology or nostalgia of the Soviet period. 

It seems that enough time has finally passed to allow a more dispassionate view of the recent Soviet past. After all it is possible to look over the traumatic part of experience and, armed with irony and natural curiosity, start “excavations” in the Soviet time, revealing still present but partly covered, heterogeneous and multivalent discourses. It is especially important, considering that a new generation has grown up, knowing this period only from word of mouth, printed stuff or films.

Attempting to study the shared experience of post-socialist territories in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union, one has to conclude that socialism as the dominant ideology of the time had different manifestations and faces in different countries. Is it possible to feel some common thread in this experience? In the post-Soviet context, it is normal to consider Baltic countries apart from Central Europe, Balkans, Caucasus and Central Asian regions. The project “Revisiting Footnotes” aims to widen the geography of the usual conversational field, including the above-mentioned regions, commonly viewed as different. New possible parallels and similarities in the interpretation of socialist experience today emerge through the kaleidoscope of thematically and geographically varied footnotes.

Exhibitions “Revisiting Footnotes I” and “Revisiting Footnotes II” will introduce socialist and post-socialist heritage of the region through visual imprints and mutual relationships of their meanings, using different approaches – documentary, ironic, research-based, reconstructing and others. Artists: Arnis Balčus (LV), Tigran Khachatryan (AR), Marijan Crtalić (HR), Žilvinas Landsbergas (LT), Lada Nakonechna (UA), Slavs &Tatars (Eurasia), Kristina Norman (EE), Aija Bley (LV), Indrė Klimaitė (LT), Marge Monko (EE), Henrik Duncker (FI) and Igor and Ivan Buharov (HU).

In the symposium “Revisiting Footnotes” young researchers and artists from Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Georgia, Ukraine, Poland and Croatia will present typical or outstanding signs of the recent past that survived into the present, also discussing various approaches of how to study, interpret and translate this experience. Participants: Magdalena Radomska (PL), Rael Artel (EE), Ieva Astahovska (LV), Dovilė Tumpytė (LT), Mārtiņš Kaprāns (LV), Viktorija Eksta (LV), Davor Mišković (HR), Sophia Tatabadze (GE), Tamta-Tamara Shavgulidze (GE), Alesya Bolot (UA), Vytautas Michelkevičius (LT), Lina Michelkevice (LT) and Arnis Balčus (LV).

In the framework of the exhibition, LCCA invites to several parallel events. On May 24th artist Kate Krolle and curator Maija Miķelsone will organise the “Creative Workshop of Table Culture”. On May 25th the "Exhibition. Vecmīlgrāvis" will take place - it will be a combination of micro-events in cafes, tennis courts, market square and other places significant for Vecmīlgrāvis. Idea: Zane Zajančkauska. On June 6th philosopher Kārlis Vērpe will chair the discussion “Art’s Super Locality in Latvia: Peculiarities of a Place”.

The project is organised in cooperation with the culture centre "Drugo More" in Rijeka, Croatia, culture platform "IZOLYATSIA" in Donetsk, Ukraine and "KSA:K" – centre of contemporary art in Kishinev, Moldova. The project is supported by European Cultural Foundation, Riga City Council, State Culture Capital Foundation, Embassy of the Republic of Estonia, Embassy of the Republic of Lithuania, Embassy of the Republic of Poland, Open Ukraine Foundation, "LuxExpress Latvia", "KOLONNA", "Rīgas Laiks".