Report

product - festival of contemporary art Varna, Bulgaria 2006

The third festival was held under the slogan ‘divided nations’ between Mai 27th and June 9th 2006. Around 40 artists, 48 film producers and 5 art scientists participated from 15 nations.

The programme offered three major aspects: Exhibition, film programme and a theoretical part.

The festival was divided into 3 exhibition locations with a total of 1200 m²: “see casino”, “city art gallery” and “bullart gallery”. Different contributions from installation, design, photography and video were complemented by actions and performances from the public sector.
The film programme “Some are watching” showed 48 short films from Germany, France, Bulgaria, Switzerland and United Kingdom. The film blocs were arranged by “Dokfest“ Kassel, Germany; „Red House“ Sofia, Bulgaria; „Le Fresnoy“ Tourcoing, France and „Videogramm“ -Sainte Foy, France. 
The theoretical part included discussions and speeches with Barbara Heinrich (Kunsthalle Fridericianum) Germany, Chris Torc (Intercult) Sweden, Ruen Ruenov (free Curator), Antoniy Donchev und Vessela Nozharova (The Red House Center) Bulgaria. 
The festival was of large interest. The exhibition and events attracted more than 2000 visitors. The amount of different activities were displayed in press, media and radio informing daily the public in Varna and throughout whole Bulgaria.
Among our Partner and Sponsors are: the ministry of culture of Bulgaria, the municipality of Varna, the Swiss culture programme “Pro Helvetia”, the French Institute of culture, the “New Bulgarian University” and the “Art Centre b&g”.

 

Welcome

The idea of “making” a Festival of Contemporary Art and, in ge­neral, of making public the reflections of artists and critics demand observation of the processes occurring in public life. This observati­on is a personal as well as a public event. Societies undergo changes and it is the process of reflection and discussion of the occurring social changes that we want to present.
The Festival is in itself a stage, a platform where the artists present and articulate their thoughts. On the other hand, the society, the audience, the individual viewer – regardless of whether he agrees or disagrees with, likes or dislikes them – reacts to the presented attitudes.
In this edition of the Festival, we have dared to draw the partici­pants’ attention to issues, which have changed histories and have confronted cultures. We focus on tendencies, in which divisions have achieved supreme power. The division of nations, the division of the future is important to our cultures and we do want to speak about that. We want to know the extent the separation must reach in order to make us realize that we need unification.
The participants observe global tendencies like division/unificati­on and sharpen the attention towards questions like “Are we really divided?” or “Are we really united?”, “How far can the institutional division/unification reach?”, “What is my personal experience of division/unification?”. The choice of artists from Korea, Germany, Bulgaria, Macedonia, France, Bosnia, Italy, Switzerland, Luxemburg and Mexico aims at making clear their personal feelings upon reading history in the context of the theme Divided nations.
All the above mentioned seems enormous, disproportionate to our ability to grasp, reflect and change. But presented in an individual or even local way, it suddenly becomes commensurate with us. We can deal with these issues and we can even have fun.

Yordan Ganevski