Galerie Kontext
curator Katarína Klusová

 

Nowadays, we consider it crucial to think and reflect on the current corona crisis. The Slovenian philosopher Mladen Dolar noted that its effects are similar to a magnifying glass. We have made some important discoveries while looking through the magnifying glass on our operation here. It is becoming more and more apparent that the need for the changes that our magnifying glass pointed out to us starts off a new transformation – and that goes for the field of professional art too. The prevailing procrastination in Gramsci’s statement – “the old is dying but the new cannot be born” – has to be abandoned as the art institution takes on a new role. The gallery needs to focus more on the systematic support of living art just as much as it has to strengthen the public awareness of the field’s fellowship and work to create a synergistic effect within and outside of it: to slow down and to focus more on those topics articulated by the exhibitions. This effort is also supported by Katarína Klusová, an artist, curator and pedagogue, whose project for Galerie Kontext focuses on gallery pedagogy or media education in the form of lectures and discussions with experts on environmentalism, sociology, linguistics, philosophy, and pedagogy. The year-round cycle will include seven realizations in various formats taking place in the foyer niches, the cinema room, the cabinet or directly at exhibitions. The very first one will explore topics of the exhibition project by Anna Tesařová in Galerie mladých. It will examine the theme of desire to hold on to memories through musuem institutions.

Barbora Kleinhamplová introduces works related to topics of power and collective trauma. The centerpiece of the exhibition is the film Irresistible which was created in collaboration with the queer dominatrix, Mistress Velvet. The film opens up a space for discussion of BDSM as a subversive sphere thanks to which a wide-ranging public change can be implemented through an individual. Working in dialogue with the film are additional layers that expand upon the film. Besides an older film, MPEG Girl, presenting a portrait of a porn actress Lída setting up a stark contrast to the emancipation position represented by Mistress Velvet in Irresistible, Kleinhamplová also presents objects and an audio-installation created specifically for this exhibition. The audio-installation was created in collaboration with Thea and Lucky.

In her essay, On Being Ill, Virginia Woolf writes:

Considering how common illness is, how tremendous the spiritual change that it brings, how astonishing, when the lights of health go down, the undiscovered countries that are then disclosed, what wastes and deserts of the soul a slight attack of influenza brings to view… it becomes strange indeed that illness has not taken its place with love and battle and jealousy among the prime themes of literature.