The fourth edition of the International Painting Biennial, Chisinau-2015, an event organized under the patronage of the Ministry of Culture of Republic of Moldova, is open again to delight the public with a large range of aesthetic approaches and visual expression means. The undeniable artistic frame of this very important manifestation ensured by the presence of notable artists from 26 countries will place Chisinau among interest hubs of visual cultural manifestations.
Due to the efforts of the organizers, the Biennial’s edition of this year, as well as the previous ones, distinguishes itself through the artistic attitude in terms of quality, aesthetic issues, as well as expansion of the international cultural-artistic context.
The exhibition displayed at the “Constantin Brancusi” Exhibition Center highlights the contemporary artistic evolution in the field of fine arts from the last years, combining the modern concepts with the traditional ones and incenting the development of painting in its whole diversity. The works presented arouse a distinct visual interest due to the selected artistic means and freedom of expression. The promotion and development of all the forms of exteriorization of the beauty, of the aesthetics, become important as long as every person finds that side of the culture that brings him closer to the idea of the progress through knowledge.
But above all, this competitive international exhibition is a platform for intercultural communication between artists without which the evolution of the contemporary art phenomenon has no prospects. The event itself is an opportunity for a dialogue between professionals, followers of different trends and tendencies of artistic expression from different countries and for establishing some creative connections. The initiation of collaboration relationships between institutions or individual artists will favor the identification of some collaboration possibilities both in the context of evolution in different schools, symposia or perspective exhibition projects, as well as in the field of artistic education.
There is no doubt that the International Painting Biennial Chisinau-2015 attributes some additional value to our culture and country, creating a favorable image to the Republic of Moldova abroad and ensuring continuity in the promotion and development of fine arts and high cultural values.
The international context from the last decades of some types of alternative artistic approach oriented towards the relationship between art and technology, such as multi-media, photo-video, digital art, performance, video-installation etc. that affirm themselves dynamically and constantly in the sphere of visual arts, cannot be perceived anymore as a destabilization exercise of the artistic norms. It is not any longer in confrontation, but rather in juxtaposition with the painting, that does not exclude the innovative aesthetic elements. International Painting Biennial Chisinau aims to support the development of the painting in terms of innovative techniques oriented towards current technical expression means.
At its fourth edition, the International Painting Biennial Chisinau 2015 claims more and more firmly a prestigious place on the cultural scene of the international public space of the visual arts. The exhibition imposes itself in the international system of contemporary painting as one of the major cultural events succeeding to attract an increasing number of notorious Romanian and foreign artists, becoming, thus, a channel of international communication.
Our organizational efforts resulted at this edition also with a great number of participation offers from foreign artists. This fact encourages us and makes us confident that Chisinau also can be a genuine international interest centre in the field of arts. The exhibition proves that painting resists and develops in a natural context, that it claims an important place in the rather controversial dynamics of contemporary art.
An important range of local artists who entered history, but also younger artists, both local and foregn will be present, by means of their works. Some of them are multidisciplinary without giving up the technical means of the painting; they are artists who direct their aesthetic interests towards painting in the actual form and expression means.
The desire to increase the aesthetical approaches and the professional level imposed a more severe rigour while selecting the works. Taking into account these reasons, the number of artworks from the country and from abroad that did not enter the exhibition is much higher in this edition than in the first three editions.
The jury, made up of art critics and theoreticians, nominated in the framework of debates based on aesthetical principles a series of works that cover a rather large range of stylistic approaches. Without certain preferences, the members of the jury opted mainly for the artistic approaches of innovative aesthetic orientation, largely supporting young artists. The present edition, as well as the previous ones, supports first of all the artistic approach of the young generation, creating a platform for its consecration.
The present exhibition convinces us that the local artistic milieu needs a broader synchronization with the actual elements and international artistic trends and, above all, with the new artistic trends, that affirm themselves more and more firmly in Romanian painting in the last years. The Romanian artists become more and more famous on the international arena of visual arts, due to the large number of galleries in the country and the free circulation of the artists in the last years, but also due to the study process in the universities that is in line with the new aesthetic tendencies. The presence of a great number of artists from Romania, both known and important as well as many representatives of younger generation and the display of the works in the two prestigious exhibition spaces in Bucharest and Iasi will support our effort in ensuring an even better connexion between artists from Republic of Moldova and the artistic background of Romania. At the same time, they could come in direct contact with the artists and with the representatives of some galleries and culture and art institutions with the view of some further collaborations.
We experience a sense of joy and satisfaction that there are people ready to support the artistic action. It is not at all easy to find support for the art and creative act while Moldovan economy is passing through an extremely tough period.
The fact that International Painting Biennial Chisinau succeeds to achieve its objectives aimed at the creation of a sustainable platform for intercultural communication in the field of visual arts is due to the full understanding of the Ministry of Culture of Republic of Moldova of the needs to develop and promote the contemporary art. The Ministry of Culture ensures the patronage of the event and other institutions such as Culture Department of Chisinau City Hall, Romanian Cultural Institute “Mihai Eminescu” from Chisinau, Agency on Intellectual Property, “Familia Sturza” Foundation support the event, including financially, for which we address our feelings of gratitude.
The broader collaboration from this year with a range of institutions from Romania and Poland opens even more widely the space for promotion and development of communication relations between exhibiting artists from Republic of Moldova and other countries. The entire exhibition is displayed at the “Constantin Brancusi” Exhibition Hall in Romanian Parliament and a selection is presented at the National Museum Complex “Moldova” from Iasi. These events would contribute to a larger support of the consecration both of the artists, as well as of the international artistic phenomenon. Offering museum spaces for exhibiting the works of some artists laureates at the Art Museum in Prahova and Adi-Art Gallery in Lodz, Poland, as well as offering grants in the framework of the Art Symposium LEPSA to the Biennial laureates will ensure a continuity of the communication relationships between artists and different cultural institutions, that would naturally contribute to the promotion and development of the fine arts.
The International Painting Biennial Chisinau aims towards a future extension of the relations, both with the artists, as well as with other international institutions in order to ensure the most favourable development of the painting and therefore a wider opening of synchronization capacities with the international artistic phenomenon.
Of course the painting does not exclude the avant-garde extremes; it has a natural evolution in terms of innovative, modern or traditional techniques, oriented in the last years towards a symbolic or linked with the reality figurativism, imbued sometimes with strong hyperrealist accents, but which is treating the ravishing reality that we are living in a playful way, with no inhibitions that handcuffed the way of thinking of previous generations of artists. The aesthetic polarisations should not be regarded otherwise than as a playful creative experience, focused on sound democratic principles, conducted in an area of artistic free will, marked by the personality of each creator and which does not have other aim than to establish a suitable creative sustainable process, generator of genuine artworks of certain artistic value.
We hope that International Painting Biennial Chisinau will contribute within its capacities to achieve this goal.
Eclipsed in the last half of the century, with the exception of the neoexpressionist revival in the 1980s reflected in such new media as installations, performance, body-art, photography, video art and many others, painting has lately re-appeared in expression tools of the artists, in the selections of large contemporary art exhibitions and in collectors’ preferences. The success of the new media, which were the favorites of the curators and directors of major contemporary art museums for many years, made some critics proclaim the end of the painting and its practice was virtually the same as leaving the present.
The flickering of the neon bulbs, artist’s own body that became an art object or the extension of the creation field to geographical dimensions led to the belief that just a painted canvas does not offer enough space for what contemporaneity, which is excessively changing in all the fields, considers being an art object. Many of these new meanings of art have been achieved by means that are not in the power of a single individual, being the evidence of the technical performance of an industrial society from the last two centuries that was to crush the individual by the corporatist systems. This applies also to the artists that represent only some points of the process of creation: the idea, often a simple sketch, and the signature, the fundamental detail for what is coming next – the trade with the artwork. Perhaps, the revival of painting (only as a referential element of prime importance, because it was never absent) is synchronous with the new philosophy of the existence which projects the emergence of the new world at human scale, with the respect towards the needs of the individual, the encouragement of self-expression, the protection of the resources, hand-made, eco, green… Painting is an example of the miracle produced by a human’s hands that may bring him glory with a capital consisting only of canvas, brush and colors.
Since what is “back” is never similar to what is “gone” (here the parable of the prodigal son may serve as an example), painting has come back enriched with the experiences of other arts, redefined under thematic, technical and expressive aspects. Today we cannot do or judge painting using old paradigms, as it can bear the mark of an obsolete attempt that “sings” with voices from other times rather than affirms its own sonority. Moreover, it is not only about the canon of the originality: recently the world has changed so much that the artist should offer the viewer a wider range of references of the contemporaneity – so complex and so selective in understanding and practicing reality. That is why, painting does not mean only filling the surfaces with color in a mechanical and repetitive approach practiced here for a very long time, which resulted in funny landscapes, unexpressive pots with flowers and decanted faces like in the old times when only painting ensured the eternity models.
The International Painting Biennial in Chisinau is one of the places where at present painting is invited to reveal new meanings, an incentive for the artists loyal to the vocation of a painter, a pennant on an imaginary map of the resurrection of the paintbrush art. By means of the awards offered, it indicates, the artistic attempts that build the new facet of painting or what painting could become. This thing may displease those who believe that the value of painting still resides in demonstrations of virtuosity of academic type. If, for many times, the new painting intrigues and bewilders, it means that we, those who look at it, have a problem with the adequacy, with its positioning in the right perspective for contemplation and analysis. This approach is not an easy one, it means its synchronization with the ideas that enlivened the modernity and postmodernity, with those that permeate the contemporaneity, it means reading some key-books and walking many kilometers about museums and art galleries. The access to painting today cannot be reduced only to the act of contemplation of an image that one can read at a glance. It means viewers’ active participation, the accumulation of knowledge and visual experience. By bringing out some works selected to be awarded for doing painting in a way, the Biennial of Chisinau may become an important school for contemplating and understanding art at present.