Saturday, February 28, 2015

Proposal submitted

...but neither of us read the FAQs about about the exhibition having at least three artists.
I tweaked the proposal as best I could, but we may be disqualified simply because the work is mainly about our projects...
Can we send the proposal to the space as well?

Tereza Swanda and Angela Rose Voulgarelis’ proposed exhibition works with the history of Pradelna Bohnice, a contemporary project space located 5 km north of Prague's city center, as a way to speak about the ramifications of marginal ways of thinking, using art as a tool for transformation. They intervene on materials of a laundry mat – carving into bars of soap and embroidering onto hundreds of flat white sheets hung from laundry lines – to shift the focus from the authorship of the artists to engagement with the public as social sculpture. Conversations become part of each work; story telling will be a shared exchange. Chance and synchronicity invite the general public to be the third participating artist in the show. 

Set on the grounds of the largest psychiatric ward in Czech Republic, Pradelna Bohnice was a laundry facility for the Institution. (Pradelna means Laundromat). Within its walls one feels the working conditions of thousands of women who washed the laundry for almost a century, from 1909 to 1993, concealing the hierarchy between those institutionalized and the Institution. This art space currently sits on the grounds of a fully functioning hospital with roughly 1300 patients and 1000 employees. The past is very much present.

In Mutual Cleanse, Swanda, born and raised in CZ, carves and paints individual portraits into bars of soap. As a response to portraiture reserved for the elite, clergy, or politicians, Swanda’s portraits will be of the cleaning women who collect change and clean Prague’s public restrooms. She will use her grandmother’s collection of 120 bars of soap that she ‘skladovala’ (meaning stored, stacked with care) in the walls of her one bedroom apartment in Czechoslovakia during Communism. The soap will be functional, and will be placed in holes and missing tiles throughout Pradelna Bohnice. Gallery viewers will be asked to participate by using one bar at a time for their bathroom experience, and replace the used soap back into the exhibition. 

Airing Dirty Laundry is an ongoing collaborative performance installation in which Voulgarelis sits among hundreds of folded flat white sheets and embroiders a single line of text onto one at a time. She hangs them from laundry lines in public space like Pradelna Bohnice. She offers passersby a phrase card with the text,  “I Should…”, “Don’t Be Too…”, “Don’t…”, or “Not Enough…” and invites them to complete it as well as to embroider alongside her.  She asks each person to consider the notion of “airing dirty laundry”. The pencil used to fill out the card is offered in exchange.  Embroidery, as a central visual element, reveals connection between meditation and everyday actions and collapses the hierarchy between “High Art” and domestic labor.

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