RIGA GALLERY was invited to participate in the prestigious 8th International Art Fair ART MOSCOW for the fourth time. The show was opened at Central Artists’ House in Moscow, 25 May 2004. RIGA GALLERY’S participation in ART MOSCOW was included in the program “Cultural Events of National Importance 2004. Program of co-operation between the Ministry of Culture of Republic of Latvia and Russian Federation 2004 - 2006” supported by our Ministry of Culture.
RIGA GALLERY presented artists Ilmārs Blumbergs, Ieva Iltnere, Ritums Ivanovs, Frančeska Kirke, Leonards Laganovskis and Sarmīte Māliņa at ART MOSCOW this year, demonstrating their versions of the topic “Fetish in life and Fetish in art processes”, its manifestations in different artists’ works from different viewpoints.
The exposition featured Ieva Iltnere’s, Ritums Ivanovs’ and Frančeska Kirke’s works not exhibited before, 14 large-size paintings in total, created especially for this show, as well as more than 100 Ilmārs Blumbergs’ and Leonards Laganovskis’ photographs and Sarmīte Māliņa’s objects “Eternal” and “Eternal Flame”.
The painter Ieva Iltnere submitted her versions of the Surrealist and Dadaist Man Ray’s famous photographs for this RIGA GALLERY project in the ART MOSCOW fair. She was inspired by works that are both artistic and historical facts, influential upon art processes and many artists’ creative ideas. Man Ray’s famous “tears” have obtained a new life in Iltnere’s interpretation, creating an expressive and mysterious imagery.
The artist Frančeska Kirke, according to her creative method, have chosen various attributes and symbols of feminine fetishes from different historical periods – shoes, jewellery, masks, etc. Female nude in Kirke’s interpretation is also turned into a fetish, an object of cult, quoting from Titian’s or some other artist’s work of the by-gone centuries.
The artist Ritums Ivanovs submitted a new series of works “Trade Mark Beauty” for this project. These paintings depict most famous actresses of international media industry, models and other pop stars who set lifestyle and beauty standards for the present epoch. In his works beauty is a fetish, adored and ruling over the world with the help of successful public relations and media. Ivanovs has chosen such symbols of beauty as the pop star Britney Spears, T.A.T.U. vocalist Julia Volkova, super model Kate Moss, actress Pamela Anderson and tennis player Anna Kurnikova.
Ilmārs Blumbergs presented a series of photographs from the project titled “House-keeping”, exposed at his solo exhibition “Drawings are in the Box” at the RIGA GALLERY in 2003. These photographs analyse human relationships. The artist explores the ambivalent nature of relationships between close relatives – love and pain as universal notions opposed to the artist’s individual experience.
Leonards Laganovskis’ series of photographs titled “Bordeaux Vine” from his solo exhibition “Right to Desire” at the RIGA GALLERY in 2004 were also demonstrated at ART MOSCOW. This series is the artist’s attempt to stir the spectator’s associations, situating vine in most varies conditions and modes. Vine appears as splashes of blood on the window pane, on petals, flowing down the corner of a house or creating a pool of blood, thus causing an unmistakable sense of unrest and perturbation.
International Art Fair ART MOSCOW offers a notable art program of international reputation. International seminars are included in its program each year. Josif Bakstein’s colloquium on the subject of “Contemporary Art in the Media Context” will take place this year during the ART MOSCOW. The number of participants is limited by the decision of an international jury. Noted art curators are among experts, like curators of the Russian exposition at the Venice Biennial – Viktor Misiano, Josif Bakstein (editor-in-chief and publisher of the journal “Khudozhestvennaya zhizn”), the noted philosopher and culture researcher Boris Groys, Hans Knoll (Vienna), Volker Diehl (Berlīne) etc.
The exhibition regularly presents Venice Biennial laureates’ works as well as projects of Eastern European museums and renowned curators. This year the exhibition program contained:
Not Vital (Swiss contemporary art, curator Matthias Ruthmüller);
laureates of Marcel Duchamp Award – Thomas Hirschorn, Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster, Mathieu Mercier;
Norio Kobayashi with the project “Digital Kitchen” (Japanese contemporary art);
group “Escape” (laureates of ART MOSCOW award 2003);
works of Finnish video art.
Curator of the RIGA GALLERY project – Inese Riņķe
The project was supported by the Ministry of Culture and Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Republic of Latvia, Embassy of Republic of Latvia in Russian Federation and State Culture Capital Foundation.