interdisciplinary art programmes
March 17th, 1999

03: artist/institution

tvvv.plotas_03: artist/institution

TV project / discussion / videoconference
broadcasted by LTV /  March 17, 1999 / 8.00 p.m. CET




For this project we are interested in the phenomena of artists networking and creating their own curatorial platforms. How does networking, collaboration and curatorship influence art production?
Does the creation of alternative platforms for art presentation change the existing structures of the art world?

Artists run Institutions correspond to the image of stargates, connecting gates between different worlds, teleporter zones in an unreal tournament. Institutions stand as transitional zones between commercial locations and art. It then becomes a matter of reflecting on these points of crystallization, of thinking, acting and processing in an anthropological and sociological sense.

Constructed narrative structure is taken as an occasion to reflect on the identification systems of institutions launching art. Artists and representatives of non-profit institutions are exposing their positions in the system.

As a resistance to the system, the most advanced  artists and practitioners have developed new methods of dealing with the system that have proven useful in the politics of Europe today. They refer to institution as an independent, system-immanent, semiological tool, which are useable as physical art locations and often serve to coordinate and mobilise. They are, in other words, political servers, where social interventions trigger actions and discussions in society – claims that contemporary, interwoven art must also face.

Yet the artists-run institutions may also be seen as a content-defined model of contextualisation, co-defining contemporary art. The context of system, the social, economic and political conditions of culture-structured life in contemporary Societies. Contemporary art is positioned in these actual  conditions of central European culture, structured by the system of the western hemisphere and conceptualized through theoretical models of modernism.
This whole story is interwoven with narratives constructed from interviews with those already established  and those not yet established [Vilnius-Helsinki-Amsterdam-Brussels];

>Marie-Jo Lafontaine /artist/video pioneer/Brussels : I think it’s in a way important for young people to see what people from my generation did, because now I’m working nearly 20 years in art field, so what they did and how they had to work very very hard in a media like video and you feel like a pioneer in a video… I had my first gallery after Documenta. And then, if you see my curriculum, I go slowly with the galleries… After that it goes on and on and then down. Because the market is. But, then you have to stay, then you need people around you, who helps you, to go one two years in gray, and then it goes up again. That’ s important.  So you have to build a career for 20 years and not go…
You have really to take a time to make an artwork. An artwork is not made in between a beer and another beer. It doesn’t work like that. An artwork has to take time and you have to think about why do you do this work. What’s the final goal with this work?

And I always say to the artists whom I know or whom I teach, to control the production of the work that they do. Not to produce too much work.Not to produce and produce and produce and produce and produce and produce and produce. Just produce and control. And control how what you produced goes to the world. And then produce again, and again. I think  in my whole life I did 8 or 9 video-sculptures. And I take my time. I don’t let me go by the market.

>Kestutis Kuizinas /art critic/director/CAC/Vilnius :…We have the Contemporary Art Centre in Vilnius, a certain fortress that keeps the level up, looks after, controls,  tries to represent the process of contemporary art. But everything else still lacks contacts, intentions, ambitions, etc. But the rest is still under the level, which needs to be mediated, structured and controlled…

>Anders Kreuger /art historian/Helsinki/Stockholm/Vilnius : The main problem is that the context is very small in Lithuania. Everyone knows everybody. That’s how the control happens in some sense.  It’s not an ideal situation for art to develop.  Institutions, artist’s initiatives are fitting the same context. Naturally there is no escape. Therefore since the context is and will remain same small, it’s gonna cause main problems. It would be nice if more people… would leave… could leave this context.  And develop individually, and then maybe come back, or not come back, I don’t know.  And then probably, commitment to take your own road… it’s much more important than money…


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