Kristiana Dimitere : "Kristiana`s art is live theatre, captured in mid-motion. The vivid colours conceal within themselves an omen of fate, which is also always present in the eyes of the characters and sometimes even outside of the picture." This description by the artist`s mother, legendary Latvian actress Vija Artmane, helps understand the complicated world of Kristiana Dimitere`s art. She`s equally comfortable sculpting, painting, drawing, illustrating, and creating stage sets and animations. The trump card of Kristiana Dimitere`s art is the plasticity of her shapes and the recognisable lines which tame the artist`s vibrant, fantastic characters so akin to the aesthetics of naïve art. Ēriks Apaļais : ĒRIKS APAĻAIS Born in Riga, Latvia, in 1981. Lives and works in Riga, Latvia Ēriks Apaļais’ s works deal with language as culturally produced material. He creates visual models, which clarify traumatic experiences through certain linguistic formulae. His work often refers to literature and linguistics (Apaļais has studied English philology), where painterly utterances are critically investigated. Thus, similar to the sounds of speech, painterly articulation may register a diverse spectrum of intonations. His matte black large format paintings stir up chalkboard beauty, where deconstructed elements levitate on the surface as the remains of semantically emptied memories. Andris Breže : Andris Breže (1958) graduated from the Art Academy of Latvia’s Design (formerly Industrial Art) Department. He has participated in exhibitions since 1977. He was one of the members of the group of Supergraphic Artists who created expressive works of graphic art in the 1980s in the medium of large format screen printing. He was nominated for the Purvītis Prize for his most recent personal show “A Life of Peace” (Galerija Alma, 2013). Under the pseudonym Andris Žebers, Breže has published three collections of poems: “Tattoos” (Liesma, 1988) and together “Vodkas/Side Effects” (Neputns, 2007). For these, he received the Klāvs Elsbergs Prize for best debut, the Aleksandrs Čaks Prize and the Annual Literature Prize for the year’s best collection of poems. Māra Brīvere : Māra’s painting reflects the artist’s path to liberation manifested through rejection of everything superfluous. This is characterized by emotional measurements precisely captured right down to the last millimetre, which are both personal and fragile. In hushed tones, with impressions akin to lines of chalk, and highlighting the value of simplicity and humility, Māra forms a reflection of her own subjective reality. She “portrays” signs or road signs, which help one to see clearly, without the sediment of domestic pollution or the context of the age. Scrupulously and laboriously conceived large-format paintings or momentary vestiges tell of our unity with nature, the primordial origins of the world, the unjustifiable seismic jolts of fate and the imperceptible expanses of her roots and soul. Barbara Gaile : Barbara Gaile is one of the more unorthodox representatives of Latvian contemporary art. The source and solution of her self-expression is in her thorough, complete and self-sufficient brand of minimalism. THE ORGANIC WORKS OF BARBARA GAILE It is common to break down contemporary art into various trends, to single out tendencies, establish conceptions and strategies, emphasise discourses, describe contexts, recognise conventionality and engage in other similar analytical procedures. This is normal for professional critics and art historians; it helps the audience of contemporary art to orient itself across the manifold space of the latest artistic culture. However, there are artists whose works are ill-suited for such analytic systematisation. One should also note that these are not outsiders but remarkable, talented artists. Of course, Mark Rothko, Cy Twombly, Yves Klein and Agnes Martin can be categorised as abstract artists but this does not help us much to understand their works. In addition, this inclusive definition tends to set them apart from the current trends in contemporary art but their art continues to attract us and is perceived as the best in contemporary painting. It seems to me that the works of Barbara Gaile coincide with various conceptual strategies in contemporary art (such as field painting or salient painting) but first of all they relate to some exceptionally profound and strong artists. Besides those mentioned above, I could add other wonderful and radically different artists: Louise Bourgeois, Kaze Zimblyte, Rachel Whiteread, Mona Hatoum… Each of them features a distinctive evocative quality that is also typical of Barbara Gaile’s works. She, like the other artists mentioned, pays particular attention to the technological side of making an artwork, turning the process of creativity into an ecstatic procedure and expecting the appropriate perception from the viewer. Barbara avoids a painterly approach, favouring texture instead; while emphasising the origin of colour in light and retaining the self-sufficient value of pigment, she preserves its “sound” but not its materiality. The materiality of Barbara’s works is recreated; it is different - like the materiality of a living organism… At the same time, the question of materiality recedes into the background; much more important is the life of that which Barbara has created and which would be difficult to call a painting in the traditional sense. It is life and interaction with us as spectators. The suggestive character of the works is so strong that they put us in a state of sustained contemplation and meditation. Barbara’s works appear to stand openly before the viewer yet at the same time they are closed in their autonomous existence. There is no open expression or narrative. It seems that we are contemplating some kind of living organisms, bodies with healed scars and opalescent skin… It is no longer either salient painting or still life but salient life – life created by the artist. I get the impression that Barbara Gaile has now reached a certain peak in her artistic development, so convincingly does she cultivate her mastery, so stable is the technological side of her painting and her organic creative position. The originality of Gaile’s creativity expands the space of Latvian contemporary art; it gives the most recent art in the world added value and undoubtedly has its audience. Leonid Bazhanov Art critic, artistic director of the Russian National Centre for Contemporary Art Ivars Drulle : Ernests Kļaviņš : Through the simple / playful use of colour, drawing and animation, the intelligent provocateur has conjured up fables that make us smile and think... The titles of the works are important for decoding the connections – they serve as rejoinders. Verners Lazdāns : "I'm interested in the incomprehensible in nature – in savagery that contains much undiscovered pre-programmed genuineness. When creating an artwork, I strive to achieve that the painted character becomes a symbol for an emotional state or trait. Perhaps in this image you will find something I haven’t noticed by myself because  of my partly intuitive manner of painting, which is not previously thought out in details. I avoid explanatory  ambience – landscapes and interior because I wish to focus on the image itself. I don’t consider the place where the character stands is so important neither the reality which overwhelms the image, but  relevant is the fact of its essence. The form of my human animals is often inspired by nature - by some animal, piece of rock, part of a bone, piece of wood and ore or even by a natural phenomenon." Verners Lazdāns Aija Zariņa : Ir tikai Rainis un nekā cita nav 2015. gada februārī Rīgā atklāja mākslinieces Aijas Zariņas izstādi “Rainis”. Man šķiet, ka tik liela nopietnība, ar kādu izdomāti un radīti šie darbi, mūsu laikabiedru mākslā sastopama diezgan reti. Pati šī nopietnība un milzīgā koncentrācija uz tādu tēlu atrašanu, kas precīzi izteiktu vēstījumu, skatītājam, manuprāt, uzliek zināmus pienākumus. Lai viņam šie pienākumi (kurus viņš, protams, var arī neuzņemties) nekļūtu par smagu, gribu īsi un personīgi ievadīt tos trīs darbus, kas šajā gleznu ciklā man šķiet vissarežģītākie. Manā izpratnē tie arī ir visbūtiskākie. Pie Raiņa, kas šajā sērijā ir vienkāršāks elements, nonākšu pēc tam. Aija visām savām gleznām ir devusi nosaukumus, taču tie nepilda savu ierasto uzdevumu – palīdzēt skatītājam, novērst pārpratumus. Tie visi līdzinās komentāriem un drīzāk domāti tiem, kuri attēlu saturu jau ir uztvēruši. Tāpēc, nonākot pie gleznas ar nosaukumu "Vēdiskais dievs RAdomirs", nosaukumam nevajag ļaut sevi samulsināt. Šajā darbā ir attēlota aina no XIII gadsimta “Zelta hronikā” pierakstītas leģendas par Mariju Magdalēnu kā Jēzus Kristus sievu, no kura viņai piedzimuši divi bērni. Ģimenes portretu ar Mariju, Kristu, viņu bērniem, magiem un Jāni Kristītāju, kurš tad vēl nebija pazaudējis galvu, Aija ir uzzīmējusi Meteoras klosteru kalna piekājē. Viņa šim mītam par svēto ģimeni ir pietuvojusies caur slāvu avotiem, tāpēc Marijai Magdalēnai ir slāvisks vārds un slavenie garie mati, kuriem par godu vecajā Novgorodā pat bija uzcelts vesels klosteris. Slāvu tradīcijas iespaidā Kristus šeit parādās ar vārdu Radomirs – ar vārdu, kādā viņu dažkārt sauc krievu vēdisti, kuri Kristu uzskata par tikai vienu no daudzajiem praviešiem – gaismas reliģijas sludinātājiem. Saule ir ļoti sarkana, jo zeme tajā brīdī tai ir ļoti tuvu – daudz tuvāk nekā šobrīd. Marija smaida, un gaismas ir daudz. No klinšu virsotnēm uz viņiem vēlīgi nolūkojas senču sejas. Hronoloģiski nākamais darbs ir “Rusu karaļi”. Tā ir glezna, kurā attēlots pēdējais Merovingu dinastijas karalis Dagobērs II, kuru nogalināja vai nejauši nošāva medībās 679. gadā. Viņa totēms ir lācis – tikpat liels kā viņš pats, ar atplestu muti, nostājies kā astotā zvaigzne Mazā lāča zvaigznājā. Uzskata, ka ar Dagobēra nāvi Merovingu dinastija izbeidzās. Aija šos karaļus redz kā pēdējos gaismas reliģijas nesējus, vismaz Francijā. Viņa tos sauc par “Rusu karaļiem”, jo viņu senči ar savu gaismas kultu esot nākuši kaut kur no tagadējās Krievijas ziemeļiem. Šo karaļu mītiskā izcelsmes vieta ir attēlota citā cikla gleznā – “Saules valsts”. “Zelta hronika” stāsta, ka Marija Magdalēna dzīves beigās nonāca tagadējās Dienvidfrancijas teritorijā un mira Eksā, kur esot glabājušās arī viņas mirstīgās atliekas. Laikā starp XII un XIV gadsimtu Dienvidfrancijā uzplauka no Romas katoļticības atšķēlusies kristiešu sekta – katari jeb “tīrie”. Katariem ir veltīta Aijas glezna “Kaujas mags RA da”. XIII gadsimtā uzskatīja, ka tieši katari Eiropā ir tie, kas tic Kristus un Marijas Magdalēnas laulībai un sevi uzskata par Marijas sekotājiem. Vatikāns katarus apkaroja ar uguni un zobenu. Krusta kara gājiens pret katariem beidzās ar kataru sakāvi un nāvi Monsegūra cietoksnī Langedokā 1244. gadā. Gleznā Aija ir attēlojusi gan divus svarīgākos katarisma centrus – Monsegūra un Usona cietokšņus (to drupas Francijā var apskatīt vēl šodien), gan arī par kataru princesi dēvēto grāfieni Esklarmondu de Fuā. Viņas vārds oksitāņu valodā, kurā viņa runāja, nozīmē “Pasaules gaisma”. Zīmīgi, ka saskaņā ar man pieejamajiem vēsturiskajiem avotiem gleznā attēlotajā 1244. gadā Esklarmonda jau bija mirusi. Attēlotais kaujas mags uz zirga ar plīvojošiem matiem (kuros no debesīm sabirušas zvaigznes) cīņā pret krustnešiem tātad vairs nav viņas fiziskais ķermenis – tas ir viņas gars. Ar kataru iznīcināšanu – uzskata Aija – Eiropā beidzās saules kults un iestājās tumsas laikmets. Kāpēc viņa šo, viņasprāt, vēsturisko cīņu par saules kulta saglabāšanu ir attēlojusi caur viduslaiku leģendām un reti minētu vēsturisku personāžu dzīves un nāves ainām? (Es esmu pārliecināta, ka formātā un simbolismā tik vērienīga Dagobēra II un Esklarmondas de Fuā ikonogrāfija, kādu redzam izstādē “Rainis”, vēl nekad nav radīta – pat ne starp kataru un Merovingu mantiniekiem māksliniekiem Francijā.) Viens no iemesliem noteikti ir tāds, ka no Baltijas aizstāvības pret krustnešiem nav saglabājušies pietiekami izvērsti rakstiskie materiāli – vismaz ne Aijas vajadzībām. Senās saules reliģijas pēdas viņa atrod latviešu folklorā. Tas redzams, piemēram, gleznā “Saules zintnieks”, kurā krauklis ir pārvērties par magu un rokā tur zelta kokli – sauli. Vienīgais cilvēks un vēsturiskais personāžs, kas viņas acīs ir cienīgs nostāties līdzās Merovingiem un kataru karavadoņiem, ir dzejnieks Rainis. Saule, protams, ir viens no visbiežāk sastopamajiem Raiņa motīviem, un tam (tāpat kā Aijai viņas gleznās) ir tik daudzas nozīmes, ka brīžiem šķiet – saule viņam ir visur, saule viņam ir viss. Viņš, piemēram, raksta: „Es mirdams nemiršu – nāks saules sūtņi/ Tie man zem kājām spārnu segas klās,/ Tie spožā saules zemē mani nesīs.” Kas to var saprast? Un citā dzejolī viņš pravieto: „Jaunās gaismas audi,/ Līdzi saules segai, /Silti apņems visus sāpju bērnus.” Kas tā ir par jauno gaismu? Kad tā nāks? No Raiņa dzejoļa “Senatne” šajā gleznu ciklā Aija ir uzzīmējusi gaili, kurš ar savu dziedāšanu izceļ no dzelmes nogrimušo pili. Aija stāsta un rāda mītus, un pati arī tos rada. Viņa neatrodas ārpusē un nenolūkojas uz tiem no malas. Tieši šajā stājā, man šķiet, ir meklējama šo darbu neparastā nopietnība. Piemēram, vārdu „Merovingi” viņi ir uzrakstījusi ar „a” – kā „Meravingi”. No dažādām zināmām dinastijas vārda rakstībām dažādās valodās viņa ir izvēlējusies tieši šo, jo viņai ir svarīgi, lai vārdā izskanētu zilbe „ra”. Gan šajā vārdā, gan visos pārējos saules cikla darbos zilbe „ra” apzīmē ēģiptiešu saules dievu Ra jeb pašu Sauli. Līdz ar to, nemaz neminot visus pārējos ceļus, kas šajā mītā saplūst vienā, mēs arī caur Ēģipti nonākam pie Raiņa. „Ra” viņa vārdā esot „saule”, „i” esot „un”, un „nis” apzīmējot visu to, ko saule apspīd. Bez saules un tās gaismas nekas jau arī nevar pastāvēt. Tāpēc nekā cita, kā tikai pašas saules un saules apspīdētā, arī nav. Ir tikai Rainis, un viņa vārdā ir izteikta visa esamība. Agnese Gaile-Irbe Krišs Salmanis : Krišs Salmanis (1977) studied in the Art Academy of Latvia’s Visual Communication Sub-Department and at the Academy of Media Arts in Cologne. Having participated in exhibitions since 2001, he has twice been nominated for the Purvītis Prize for the exhibition Lost (Riga Art Space, 2009), and subsequently for the video animation “The Long Day” (Festival Survival Kit 4, 2012) and the exhibition “The Fragility of Trust” (Galerija Alma, 2012). In 2011, he was one of the finalists nominated for the prestigious Henkel Art Award. In 2013, together with artist Kaspars Podnieks, he represented Latvia at the 55th Venice Art Biennale with the pavilion North by Northeast. Reserved, melancholic, intellectually justified and visually filigree - this briefly describes the artist Krišs Salmanis, who is no doubt one of the brightest representatives of contemporary art in Latvia. Krišs Salmanis uses animation, video, photography, objects as well as his body, trees etc in his art. However, it is neither the media used, nor the unifying themes, but rather the employed method what characterizes his work. In Latvian there is not an appropriate synonym for the word 'joke' to denote that the element, which in Salmanis’ work can be perceived as irony or humour, is instead mental excersise, intellectual activity, wit as a twist of thought. Another important aspect is formulated best by the artist himself, using Kurt Vonnegut’s idea of the complicated futility. The making of Salmanis’ work is often seemingly unnecessarily time- and effort-consuming. It is a kind of self-invented craftsmanship, which, even if unnoticed by the spectator, is a vital component of the final piece. The work of Krišs Salmanis is the process of thinking and the way of passing one’s life. Conceptual clarity and poetic polysemy co-exist in Salmanis’ art. Painstakingly elaborate, the works are thought out to the tiniest detail; they are often quite minimalist as to artistic expression and defined by their unexpected paradoxicality and intuitive quest for the truth combined with subtle irony and existential sadness. The artist works in a variety of media, including animation, video and object installation, occasionally using his own body in his art. Renesanse, Renaissance Kristīne Kursiša _ Ārpus kontroles _ 26.09. - 22.10. 2009., Kristīne Kursiša _ Out Of Control _ 26.09. - 22.10. 2009. Mūsu laika ikonas _ 27.10. - 14.12.2009., Contemporary Icons _ 27.10. - 14.12.2009. ARCOmadrid 2010 _ Gints Gabrans _ 17. - 21.02. 2010., ARCOmadrid 2010 _ Gints Gabrans _ 17. - 21.02.2010. Jānis Blanks _ Personālizstāde _ 27.03. - 30.04.2010., Jānis Blanks _ Solo show _ 27.03. - 30.04.2010. Ivars Drulle _ Balstīts uz patiesiem notikumiem _ 27.04. - 10.06.2011., Ivars Drulle _ Based on True Stories _ 27.04. - 10.06.2011. Ernests Kļaviņš _ Karš starp titāniem un rūķīšiem _ 28.11. - 02.12.2011., Ernests Kļaviņš _ War Between the Titans and Gnomes _ 28.11. - 02.12.2011. Krišs Salmanis _ Uzticēšanās trauslums _ 28.05. - 27.07.2012., Krišs Salmanis _ The fragility of trust _ 28.05. - 27.07.2012. Andris Breže _ Miera Dzīve _ 5.10.2012. - 09.01.2013, Andris Breže _ A Life of Peace _ 5.10.2012. - 09.01.2013 Ivars Drulle _ Jums tūlīt atlaidīs _ 22.11.2013. - 24.01.2014., Ivars Drulle _ You’ll be pardoned forthwith _ 22.11.2013. - 24.01.2014. Molekulārās Dzīves Metamorfozes _ 20.06. - 15.08.2014, Metamorphoses of Molecular Life _ 20.06. - 15.08.2014 Aija Zariņa _ RA i nis _ 26.02. - 20.03. 2015, Aija Zariņa _ RA i nis _ 26.02. - 20.03. 2015 Andris Breže, Krišs Salmanis _ 05.05 - 05.06. 2015., Andris Breže, Krišs Salmanis _ 05.05 - 05.06. 2015. Camille Henrot, Māra Brīvere, Daiga Grantiņa _ Haosa Harmonija _ 9.06.-5.09.2016., Camille Henrot, Māra Brīvere, Daiga Grantiņa _ The Harmony of Chaos _ 9.06.-5.09.2016. Ēriks Apaļais _ Le Cygne _ 07.09. - 14.10.2016., Ēriks Apaļais _ Le Cygne _ 07.09. - 14.10.2016. Ivars Drulle _ Manai Dzimtenei _ 30.11.2016. - 20.01.2017., Ivars Drulle _ To My Homeland _ 30.11.2016. - 20.01.2017. Amalie Smith _ ΜΗΧΑΝΙΚΟΣ _ 10.04. - 19.05.2017., Amalie Smith _ ΜΗΧΑΝΙΚΟΣ _ 10.04. - 19.05.2017. Kopā viens EVELĪNA VIDA un ANDRÉ VIDA 29. 05. – 21.07.2017., Alone Together by EVELINA VIDA and ANDRÉ VIDA 29.05. - 21.07. 2017 ĒRIKS APAĻAIS Institucionālās spēles 17.11. 2017. - 26.01.2018., ĒRIKS APAĻAIS Institutional Gambling 17.11. 2017. - 26.01.2018.
 
 
 
Kristiana Dimitere
Ēriks Apaļais
Andris Breže
Māra Brīvere
Barbara Gaile
Ivars Drulle
Ernests Kļaviņš
Verners Lazdāns
Aija Zariņa
Krišs Salmanis
METAMORPHOSES of MOLECULAR LIFE



Gints Gabrāns (Riga)

Sonja Bäumel (Vienna, Amsterdam)

Pavillion_35 ( Clemens Grabher, Niki Passath, Hansjörg Petschko, Günter Seyfried, Kristin Weissenberger ) (Vienna)



Science plays an essential role in our existence, and has also an immense influence on how we understand the world. It is also a manifestation of the human desire to control and master nature, including the human body. This desire manifests itself through numerous achievements and continuous research within medicine, microbiology, and genetics that makes it possible to modify and enhance the human body, as well as giving rise to the possibility of creating genetically engineered organisms and new forms of life. The hopes, promises and fears about the future that science brings us are probably among the reasons, why science has always been an object of fascination for many artists.
Technologies are today becoming more and more accessible, which has given some artists an opportunity to replace the artist’s studio with the science lab and assume the role of a scientist.
The exhibition presents three projects, which in different ways engage with life sciences. The projects are created in collaboration with scientists, wherein the artists have worked with tools, materials and methods of scientific research instead of media traditionally associated with the artistic practice. The artists work in the field in between art and scientific research with the focus on molecular and human biology.
The subject of Sonja Baümel’s project Expanded Self is the human skin and the invisible universe of bacteria living on the surface of the human body. The artist has used her own body in order to explore the bacteria from an aesthetic point of view, which at the same time is an attempt to challenge our perception of the human skin and who we are.
The U.S military innovation department DARPA in 2004 announced a program with a goal to enable soldiers to survive long periods of time without food. In his project Metabolic Dominance Gints Gabrāns presents genetically modified digestive bacteria, which have been given the ability to synthesise an enzyme that is capable of breaking down otherwise for humans indigestible cellulose, thus offering a prospect, how such bacteria can be used in the near future.
Günter Seifried will represent bio art club Pavillon_35 with the interactive project The Phage
λ Simulacrum. In the project three digital image files are converted into synthesized DNA molecules, which are recomposed with help of E.coli bacteria and bacteriophage lambda virus (Phage λ). The bio-reaction is subsequently again translated into digital image files. The images visualize a reaction, which occur through the manipulation of human genetic material.
The projects focus on bioengineering, including the human body, and deal with the issues like manipulation and enhancement of nature and the human body and its metamorphoses. The artists address questions that concern technological and scientific development and its effect on human life in the future as well as the entire definition of life – what is the future of the human body in the age of genetic and biological engineering, when we are not only able to modify and transform nature, but also our bodies and are offered new ways of existence in the near future


curated by Elīna Sproģe and Lizete Riņķe
Expanded Self
The Phage λ Simulacrum
Renaissance
Kristīne Kursiša _ Out Of Control _ 26.09. - 22.10. 2009.
Contemporary Icons _ 27.10. - 14.12.2009.
ARCOmadrid 2010 _ Gints Gabrans _ 17. - 21.02.2010.
Jānis Blanks _ Solo show _ 27.03. - 30.04.2010.
Ivars Drulle _ Based on True Stories _ 27.04. - 10.06.2011.
Ernests Kļaviņš _ War Between the Titans and Gnomes _ 28.11. - 02.12.2011.
Krišs Salmanis _ The fragility of trust _ 28.05. - 27.07.2012.
Andris Breže _ A Life of Peace _ 5.10.2012. - 09.01.2013
Ivars Drulle _ You’ll be pardoned forthwith _ 22.11.2013. - 24.01.2014.
Metamorphoses of Molecular Life _ 20.06. - 15.08.2014
Aija Zariņa _ RA i nis _ 26.02. - 20.03. 2015
Andris Breže, Krišs Salmanis _ 05.05 - 05.06. 2015.
Camille Henrot, Māra Brīvere, Daiga Grantiņa _ The Harmony of Chaos _ 9.06.-5.09.2016.
Ēriks Apaļais _ Le Cygne _ 07.09. - 14.10.2016.
Ivars Drulle _ To My Homeland _ 30.11.2016. - 20.01.2017.
Amalie Smith _ ΜΗΧΑΝΙΚΟΣ _ 10.04. - 19.05.2017.
Alone Together by EVELINA VIDA and ANDRÉ VIDA 29.05. - 21.07. 2017
ĒRIKS APAĻAIS Institutional Gambling 17.11. 2017. - 26.01.2018.
Art Cologne 2018
Artissima 2016
ArtBrussels 2016
Art Brussels 2015
ArtBrussels 2014
ArtBrussels2013
ARCOmadrid 2011