To kick off the Manifesta 14 Western Balkans Project, Skopje’s Museum of Contemporary Art has led two Expert Talks featuring artists, curators and thinkers taking place in Skopje, North Macedonia and Prishtina, Kosovo. The two events, entitled Socially engaged art in a new reality, will explore the changing dynamics of art institutions and community engagement in post-Covid society.
10th November – Skopje, North Macedonia
11th November – Prishtina, Kosovo
On Wednesday the 10th of November, the programme will start in Skopje, North Macedonia with an event with Santiago Zabala, Shiraz Grinbaum and Oren Ziv, Jonas Staal and Filippo Minelli. Then, on Thursday the 11th of November, there will be a Prishtina event in the Modelarium, Faculty of Architecture. Thursday’s event will include Manifesta 14’s Creative Mediator Catherine Nichols, Albanian artist Blerta Hoçia and Manifesta 12 artist Filippo Minelli. Each speaker will give a short presentation of their work and then there will be time for questions from the audience at the end.
All the Western Balkans Project Expert Talks are free of charge and open to everyone. We hope to see you then!
Socially engaged art in a new reality
There is a need to return our attention to the methods of education, artistic and curatorial practices in an era of ‘the new reality’, a reality that has been shaped by the recent events of 2020 and 2021, such as the pandemic, lockdown and closed borders. This challenging context not only creates a political emergency, but also an artistic state of emergency. At the same time, it generates the potential for expressing new forms of artistic practices and new challenges for cultural institutions as they attempt to represent these on-going, shifting cultural dynamics.
In terms of concrete conditions and moving beyond conventional debates about curatorial practices, museum space, exhibitions, collections and audiences, we need to consider artistic practices that seek to create an understanding between art, society and the role of museums in community engagement. This is especially important when considering countries that are undergoing processes of transition – countries such as the Republic of North Macedonia and the Republic of Kosovo.
The programme concept was led by Tihomir Topuzovski, the interdisciplinary programme leader of the Museum of Contemporary Art in Skopje and editor of the journal The Large Glass.