Curated by Femke Lutgerink
Featuring Nele Decock, Rob Hornstra, Stani Michiels, Anoek Steketee, Reza Abedini and Hans Wolbers
How is public life ‘designed’ in countries with (former) (or current) totalitarian or ideological regimes? How does one capture the tension between the official (state-mandated) and alternative visual cultures? What is the predominant image Western media creates of these societies, and is there another story to tell? How do these cultures, both dominant and alternative, cope with the expanding global domain of the internet and the idea of freedom it represents?
In Encounters, curator Femke Lutgerink (The Netherlands) brings together six artists from Iran, Belgium and the Netherlands - Nele Decock, Rob Hornstra, Stani Michiels, Anoek Steketee, Reza Abedini and Hans Wolbers - who explore these questions in their work.* Using photography, the internet, sound and graphic design, these artists share their fascination with the societies of Iran, Uzbekistan, and Russia, from either far away or around the corner, seen from within or as a stranger.
None of the artists are explicitly political, but their points of view serve as an Archimedes point to talk about bigger global issues such as democratization, globalization and emancipation. The self-willed, personal translations in these works, with an obvious social aspect, communicate astonishment, relatedness and also discomfort within their exploration and confrontation with the idea of the ‘other.’ The purpose of this exhibition is to create a space of openness and comfort where the public can get a hint of these rewarding encounters.
*All artists, except for Reza Abedini, live and work in the Netherlands.
Boston Center for the Arts, Inc.
539 Tremont Street - Boston