press release

Bremen, Germany, and Rīga have been friendship cities for 25 years, and the anniversary of this situation will be celebrated via a Bremen Days festival in Rīga from September 3-5. At 4:00 PM on September 4, the mayors of the two cities – Nils Ušakovs for Rīga and Jens Böhrnsen for Bremen – will open the art exhibition “Gazing Into the Stars” at the Rīga Art Space. The exhibition offers a unique look at the work of 30 different artists who were selected by curator Inga Šteimane in relation to contemporary art in Bremen. On the opening day, at 6:00 PM, a Super 8 film will be shown in the Intro Hall as one of the events of the White Night.

The exhibition will surprise the viewer with European intelligence, the tradition of contemporary art, and a diversity of styles and media. Curator Inga Šteimane is thus continuing to pursue her strategy of expanding the concept of contemporary art in Latvia, leading from the phenomena of today to the concept of succession. New installations will be created especially for Rīga by Christian Helwing, Patricia Lambertus and Ina Raschke. Other popular artists who will be represented at the exhibition will be Norbert Schwontkowski (paintings), Horst Müller (objects), and Timm Ulrichs (a conceptualist who has been extensively honoured in Europe this year and who declared himself in the 1960s to be a complete work of art). Also represented will be winners of the Bremen Art Awards, which will allow visitors to the exhibition to get a sense of the institutional aspects of art in Bremen.

When putting together the story of the exhibition, the curator found that of great importance is the idea that contemporary art represents a balance of strategic expressions. This idea was originated by the contemporary arts theorist Boris Groys, who has said that it is a mistake to think that contemporary art accepts anything at all. Instead, it is a self-critical and self-reflective network which maintains its own balance, making precise references to exaggerations in any of the segments of art. Another element in the contour of the exhibition is a conclusion from the legendary and always influential Belgian Marcel Broodtaers (1924-1976) – that he prefers to be linked to a creative moment that can be characterised by the concepts of “heroic” and “lonesome.” Broodtaers made that statement nearly 40 years ago, and it coincides with Groys’ contemporary vision of art as a network that is subject to self-regulation. This means that each individual artist’s responsibilities are both heroic and lonesome, and they join together in a battle for the common good.

The minimal number of points when drawing an area is three. When looking for the third point in the contour of the exhibition, there is the “white stone” from Revelations: “To everyone who is victorious I will give some of the manna that has been hidden away in heaven. And I will give to each one a white stone, and on the stone will be engraved a new name that no one understands except the one who receives it.” Each new word that is read from the white stone by an heroic and lonesome representative of contemporary art represents the path of contemporary art through the thorns and toward the stars. Gazing Into the Stars.

only in german

Gazing into the stars / Sterne sehen

Künstler: Patricia Lambertus, Aram Bartholl, Sebastian Gräfe, Wolfgang Zach, Stefan Demming, Horst Müller, Timm Ulrichs, Harald Falkenhagen, Jürgen Schmiedekampf, Norbert Schwontkowski, Thomas Behling, Erika Plamann, Heiner Preißing, Herwig Gillerke, Mia Unverzagt, Ina Raschke, Christian Helwing, Christian Haake, Barbara Rosengarth, Claudia Christoffel, Tilman Rothermel, Claus Hänsel, Achim Bertenburg, Naivsuperfilm , Claudio Pfeifer, Stephane Leonard, Ralf Küster, Anja Fußbach, Susanne Bollenhagen, Niko Timm, Marikke Heinz-Hoek, Filmbüro Bremen