WATER. INFINITE LOOP

 

Curated by French architect Simon Jacquemin and Slovenian artist Martin Bricelj Baraga

 

Water is the key structural basement of Almaty urban design. Water acts as a threat and conversely a crucial operational and institutional factor in the cities and cityscapes. Water as the core motif of ARTBAT FEST 2018 appears to be an open and appealing challenge for a wide range of potential participants. Since water is an essential resource and integral vital component for all the living, it brings up the issues of geopolitics, power engineering, recreation and entertainment, science, and spirituality. Besides, it encourages attention of the audience to the cycles of matter. There were 6 art installations along the Esentai river form Satpayev St to Kurmangazy St, as well as 4 more installations in other areas of the city. The artists from Kazakhstan, Slovenia, Italy and other countries worked for this exhibition tour, two of the art works were produced by the curators of public art project in collaboration.

WATERSTREAM

 

Curators: Martin Bricelj Baraga, MoTA - Museum of Transitory Art (Slovenia), Simon Lacquemin, Bellastock (France) in cooperation with ARTECITYA.

Project participants: MoTA&Bellastock (France, Slovenia), BridA art group (Slovenia), Asel Eszhanova and Sergey Kravchenko (Kazakhstan and Belarus), Aida Isakhankyzy (Kazakhstan), Masayoshi Fujita (Japan), Nazira Karimova, Anvar Musrepov, Arman Sein (Kazakhstan), Martin Bricelj Baraga (Slovenia), Marco Barotti (Italy), Yelena Vorobyova and Victor Vorobyov (Kazakhstan), Matthew Robinson, Ben Nathan (UK and Germany)

 

Water stream is the main theme for 2018 public art project. The project curators French architect Simon Jacquemin and Slovenian artist Martin Bricelj Baraga are convinced that water has a special status in Almaty, so all the project installations are either way related to water.

 

Waterstream public art project was launched in Almaty under ARTBAT FEST 9 and was involved in the ARTECITYA international European program.

 

Water is the key structural basement of Almaty urban design. Water acts as a threat and conversely a crucial structural and institutional factor in the cities and cityscapes. Water as the core motif of ARTBAT FEST 2018 appears to be an open and appealing challenge for a wide range of potential participants. Since water is an essential resource and integral vital component for all the living, it brings up the issues of geopolitics, power engineering, recreation and entertainment, science, and spirituality. Besides, it encourages attention of the audience to the cycles of matter. There were 6 art installations along the Esentai river form Satpayev St to Kurmangazy St, as well as 4 more installations in other areas of the city. The artists from Kazakhstan, Slovenia, Italy and other countries worked for this exhibition tour, two of the art works were produced by the curators of public art project together.

ARTECITYA is a collaboration between 10 cities and 9 institutions that work in the sphere of urban art and urban design. Each of the participants carries out their own projects; for example architectural laboratory Bellastock (Paris) held series of Temporary city festivals located near Paris. KUNSTrePUBLIK Center for Art and Urbanistics (Berlin) developed a residency program for artists from different countries to stay in Berlin for some time, share ideas and create new projects. MoTA museum (Slovenia) and Bellastock laboratory (France) were involved in CCEA project by non-governmental association of architects for transformation of the central viaduct in Prague.

MICROWORLDS

A project of young Kazakhstani artists within the educational program School of Artistic Gesture 

Project participants: Altynai Imanbekova,  Ilyas Kurmangaliev,  Tamina Ospanova, Dalilah Kanagat, Gafurova Marina

 

The identity of the city is read from its center. The central districts keep in themselves the memory of events and city madmen, buildings of Soviet modernism and Stalinist Empire style, traces of past ideologies and the propaganda of national ideas. In the case of Almaty, the so-called “golden square”, as a place of attraction, has gathered around itself the main components of visual and semantic identity, which is being built in the minds of citizens and internal migrants.


The general concept of the exhibition "Microworlds" casts doubt on the prevailing stereotypes through a slice of reality, moving away from the general to the particular, and offers a study of the periphery - microdistricts for the manifestation of program (ideological?) Identification of the area.

Memory Square

Presentation of the book of Tigran Amiryan

“Memory Square” is the name of the book, which was prepared by the Armenian researcher and art curator Tigran Amiryan within the framework of the Art Prospect (CEC Artslink) residence. The residence program was implemented for a month in Almaty on the basis of the Eurasian Cultural Alliance foundation. The presentation of art research took place at the 9th International Contemporary Art Festival ARTBAT FEST.

 

Within the framework of the project, Tigran offers a visual-narrative sketch dedicated to the building of the former NKVD in Almaty as an architectural artifact, where the common memory of the tragic past of the city is concentrated. The main problem, to which the author of the book returns, is the question of the formation of a museum in an era when museums are increasingly losing their connection with real life, becoming a warehouse-storage or attraction for tourists. In parallel, we are increasingly faced with the issue of memory, which, on the one hand, lends itself to natural destruction/oblivion, on the other hand, it is regularly traumatized due to the lack of ways of articulating a private or shared past.

During the years of the Great Terror, Kazakhstan became one big camp for those who were exiled here on trumped-up cases. In the center of Almaty, the building that housed the headquarters of the NKVD is still preserved. It is known that in this building not only decisions were made about the fate of often innocent people, but also executions (executions) were carried out in the basements of the house. For almost 20 years, activists have not been able to make the building become a museum in memory of political repression.

ART with/out THE CITY

International Symposium

For two days, the participants of the International Symposium Art with/out the City? talked about the role of art in the urban environment. Experts from the Czech Republic, Poland, Greece, France, Slovenia, Germany, Armenia, Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan shared their ideas.

We discussed:

- can art be profitable and self-supporting?

- can art influence the life of the city?

- Should the artist follow the preferences of the public?

- and many many others.

Conditional Boundaries

Project by art group Hutkasmachnaa 

Terrenkur. Almaty is lined with borders, on both sides of which there are living people. Tall, deaf, concrete, metal, factory, homemade, with sharp peaks, barbed wire and without - fences cut the city into reservations and blocks, into corridors and labyrinths, inside which something happens. The desire to protect one's own boundaries is as understandable as the desire to look beyond them without violating them. What is there? Most likely, the same sky, the same trees, the same people. With conditional boundaries beyond which it is impossible to look.

 

Art - a group from Minsk Hutkasmachnaa ("fast - tasty" - in Belarusian) quickly walked the magic of the first level along the fences and walls along Malaya Almatinka.

Physical boundaries were not violated.

Exhibitions within the framework of the festival

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Almaty-Zurich Transcultural Exhibition

Villa Boutiques & Restaurants

Curators: Peter Traenkle, Rada Leu

08/28/2018

Group exhibition of Indian artists

Villa boutiques&restaurants

(Almaty, Kazakhstan)

Curator: Bayan Shaikh

Project Director: Vladislav Sludskiy 

08/25 – 09/09/2018

Group exhibition of graduates of the School of Artistic Gesture 

Alatau Subway Station

(Almaty, Kazakhstan)

Curator: Dilda Ramazan

08/25/2018

A project of young Kazakhstani artists within the School of Artistic Gesture 

Central Exhibition Hall

(Almaty, Kazakhstan)

Curator: Kambucha

08/25/2018-09/14/2018

ARTBAT FEST 8 September 1-30, 2017

Curator of the festival: @artbatfestbot (telegram-bot)

The future sprouts from the past, piercing us in the present.

The end of the last century was marked by ubiquitous domestication of digital devices. Pictures and music, stacked in 8bit packets of information, captured the world and formed a peculiar aesthetics. And now, our heart brims with warmth of nostalgia any time we meet something that has a similar encryption code, even it only imitates the outlines.

 

The 8bit world captured us playfully through pokemons, Tetris and Mario. Some iconic institutions, such as MoMA, have included these games in their permanent collections. The virtual world where the princess is saved from captivity in the castle or tanks are fighting on the battlefield has ceased to be just a game for us. It has become an integral part of our everyday life.

 

In parallel with these processes, which were superficial back then and are fundamental now, the game, as interpreted by the Norvegian (and clever) philosopher Johan Huizinga, is disappearing from our society. The game for him is that irrational, subtle boundary between competition, myth, science, faith, law, military affairs and other social vertical phenomena that one had to imagine first in order to construct later. The Homo Ludens ceases to be, and the rational, with its rhetoric of perception of the world and actions, starts to dominate, putting aside the paradigm of "frivolity," an almost comic attitude to reality. Huizinga believed that the element of the game still remains in poetry, and we believe that contemporary art is a myth-making process in the broad sense – an attempt to involve the world in playing a game and force it to step back from the rational and look irrationally, from outside, at what is happening.

ARTBAT FEST 8 offers artists and viewers to interpret the body of the city as a playing space and the disappearance thereof. Participants of the festival play with the city and with each other. Breaking away from the rational perception of the world, they are trying to create a "playground" for the viewer, where both of them could reflect on the current functioning of the game and on what games today form that which was once inseparable from the formation of almost all social processes.

At the end of the 20th century, we played computer games built on 8bit graphics, and 8bit music came from the speakers. The 8bit world responds with a romanticized nostalgia for the beginning of the era of computers and robots. Can we take these technological changes as the basis for a new big game? Is there a competitive component in Counter Strike and what is the uniqueness of the biological machine as compared the electronic computer? It seems that the difference lies in generating ideas, but aren't these processes mechanized as well?

The new ARTBAT FEST festival wants to talk with you about the fact that life is a game programmed by us for us and with the participation of ourselves. We should not take it too seriously, although it certainly should be taken seriously.

ALMAPOLIA

Interactive game in the framework of ARTBAT FEST 8bit

Location: Arman cinemacenter (104, Dostyk)
02–30.09.2017 

This year we offer the citizens to become involved in interactive public project "AMAPOLIA". This game is based on the example of the well-known strategy "Monopoly". "AMAPOLIA" is a type of Almaty as a creative hub where every street is the gallery, design shop, architectural office, virtual games studio, and other entities that create intellectual property. Through the format of the game, we want to attract Almaty residents to the development of the creative industry, to make them feel part of the city, taking responsibility for decision-making.

RESIDENCY PROGRAM

Participants:

Oksana Chepelyk (Ukraine),

Lado Lomitashvili (Georgia)

Location: Art Center at Almaty Arena

14.08–03.09.2017 

 

The project was implemented within the framework of the ART PROSPECT Residency program
General partner: International organization CEC ArtsLink

The ART PROSPECT Residency program provides opportunities for artists and curators to conduct research, create new work, collaborate with the local arts community, and create special projects in partnership with local arts organizations in Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Tajikistan, Ukraine, and Uzbekistan. Each two-four week residency is individually designed to enable visiting artists and curators to learn about the local arts community, develop their own work, and share information about their work and culture with local audiences.

Lado Lomitashvili (Georgia) 

Project: With his architectural background and a special interest in the public space, Lomitashvili is interested in getting acquainted with Kazakhstan, its culture, and historical architectural and spatial artefacts in close collaboration with the local community. As an emerging artist, he also considers it very important to engage in an exchange of experience with colleagues at an international level.

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Oksana Chepelyk (Ukraine) 

Project: During her residence in Almaty, Oksana Chepelyk plans to continue her “City Code” research. The city as a neural network, the new nervous system of the urban landscape, requires identification of its words, signs and images. In Almaty, the artist intends to collaborate with local partners and communities to create her own vision of one of the eight districts of Kazakhstan’s cultural capital by video mapping the “City Code”. This work will be presented in the public art programme of the annual Festival of Contemporary Art ARTBAT FEST, dedicated to the city of Almaty, its spirit and citizens. 

A SERIES OF PERFORMANCES

Location: Art Center at the Almaty Arena

Dates of the event: 02.09.2017

 

British actor and performer Roger Hill, who arrived in Almaty at the invitation of the British Council, held a master class for young Kazakhstan artists and actors. The results of the workshop were shown at the opening of the festival.

Participants:
Roger Hill
Aigerim Ospanova
Ramil Niyazov
Evgenia Babich
Ekaterina Nikonorova
Adiya Mussina
Bekarys Boranbayev (the german group)
Daniya Absalyamova (the german group)

Kazakhstan-Russian exhibition
Almaty art center
(Almaty, Kazakhstan)
Curator: Yuliya Grachikova
02/09 – 16/09/2017
Exhibition of Young Artists
Cinemacenter Arman 
(Almaty, Kazakhstan)
Curators: Vladislav Sludskiy,
Yuliya Sorokina
01/09 – 17/09/2018

Exhibitions within the framework of the festival

Kazakhstan-Swiss exhibition
Vzletnaya art space 
(Almaty, Kazakhstan)
Curators: Peter Traenkle, Rada Leu
08/09 – 17/09/2017

Eurasian Cultural Alliance Public Association

Republic of Kazakhstan, Almaty

Nurmakov str, 79

For all inquires please contact pr@cultura.kz