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We're a team of eight artists, curators and critics with a broader network of art professionals on the post-soviet, post-communist and diasporic spaces. With our ability to grasp, to describe and to invert the sensable, we might be your best collaborator.

How to contact us

Mission

 

TransitoryWhite is an online platform for the connectivity of intersected discourses of local, regional, and global perspectives on art, design and activism. TransitoryWhite is about contemporary art from the blind spots (“white spots”) from Central Asia, Caucasus and Eastern Europe.
 
Despite the territories heterogeneous cultural, historical and religious diversity, the respective countries share a fundamental experience of a realised utopia, which lasted over more than 70 years. In the turbulent time of the 20th century, the political events taking place were differing from those in Europe, which also resulted in an original set of cultural and aesthetic questions. The uniqueness of these questions was underlined by the particular term “Post-Soviet” which was coined to describe the political, economic and artistic transition from the communist regime to the democratic states. While we don’t deny that the initial generalisation was making sense, we claim for the new discussions and discourses for the art from these regions which are not tied by the restrains of its brand. We would love to show video art, bio art, art on the edge of science, communal projects, feminist initiatives, new media performances and much more on our platform and give the possibility for discovering the transnational connections and influences of the artists from these countries. Apart from that, we aim to translate and to publish the new and old texts written by the local art historians, art theoreticians and curators, which are usually expelled from the contemporary art discourse.
 
Crucial to our investigation of those regions is furthermore, the representation of artists and theoreticians from any ethnic, religious, sexual and even political minorities as an opposition to the accumulating national discourse. We’re dedicated to exploring any transnational networks as well as limits of connection within and on the borders.
 
TransitoryWhite is the White Noise of the post-post-Soviet, a constant disturbance, a random signal, cacophony, turbulence, restlessness, which - contrary to the musical White Noise - is not constant, but is in fluctuation and transition.

Contributors

Victoria Kravtsova

Ira Konyukhova

Thibaut de Ruyter

Asli Samadova

Antonina Stebur

Alex Ulko

Katharina Wiedlack

People

Ina Hildebrandt

Ina Hildebrandt is an art historian and cultural journalist. Born in Kazakhstan, she grew up as a so-called Russian-German in the south of Germany. After spending years of total assimilation she developed a strong interest in her cultural roots. Several long travels and stays took her to Easter-Europe over Russia to Central-Asia. Thereby she started to focus more on those regions also as art historian and journalist. She lives and works in Berlin. 

Irina Konyukhova

Ira Konyukhova is an artist, writer, curator, feminist activist and the founder of TransitoryWhite. In her practice, she explores the connection between female sexuality, pop-resilience, death as well as colonial technological practices. As an artist, her works have been presented on various international festivals and exhibitions, including DocLisboa, Athens Biennale, Teneriffa Espacio del Arte, Exground Film Festival e.t. Her latest article on the early 2000s Russian lesbian stars T.a.T.u. And their influence on queer politics has been recently published by Pop-Zeitschrift by University Siegen. Ira was a grantee of BS Projects Artist-in-Residence scholarship Programm and lives and works in Berlin.

Pavel Metelitsyn

Pavel Metelitsyn is a software engineer and developer focusing on interactive data presentation, user interfaces and web technologies. He is driven by the idea of making the information more accessible through interactivity and gamification. Working together with creative agencies he implemented interactive multimedia stations for Neues Historisches Museum, Frankfurt/Main, made a kiosk app for a permanent exhibition at Deutsche Nationalbibliothek, Frankfurt/Main. Besides that, he works with a wide range of clients from FinTech Startups to national research institutions, helping them to collect, process and present the business information. Pavel holds an M.Sc. in Mathematics.

Daria Prydybailo

Daria Prydybailo is a curator, researcher, founder of the TRSHCHN platform and co-founder of the NGO Art Matters Ukraine. Her background includes +7 years in leading cultural institutions of Ukraine such as National museum complex Art Arsenal and CCA PinchukArtCentre, as well as independent curatorial practice with a strong focus on the body in contemporary art, sensual turn, sound art, and in-situ projects. She worked on large-scale international projects such as International forum Art Kyiv, the First Kyiv Biennale of contemporary art ARSENALE 2012, and Ukrainian Pavilion at the 55th Venice Biennale. During 2013-2015 she curated online-platform & collective of artists, curators and writers  (wo)manorial, who contemplate the ever-changing concept of femininity. Her latest research is focused on love and intimacy in the context of emotional capitalism. Originally from Kyiv currently she lives and works in Berlin. 

Sascia Reibel

Sascia Reibel is a graphic and product designer. Her focus lays on printed matter, especially books and posters, with a strong dedication for typography. She engages in projects within the field of culture, art, and education. She studies communication design at the University of Art and Design Karlsruhe and has also studied in the design master program of the Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing, China. Her work has been honoured with several awards, including «Most Beautiful Swiss Books», «Most Beautiful Books from all over the world», «Bronze Nail, ADC», as well as the «Badge of Typographic Excellence, TDC New York.

Kundry Reif

Kundry Reif grew up in Vienna, Austria. Whilst studying cultural studies at university in Berlin she started to work in art collectives and galleries. Last year she went to work at the Goethe Institute in Tashkent, Uzbekistan for a year. Having never heard a lot about Central Asia before, this year abroad sparked her interest. Being back now, she misses Central Asian Kurt, and has decided that her favorite museum of all times is the Sawitsky Museum in Nukus, Uzbekistan. 

Willi Reinecke

Willi Reinecke is a film director, writer, and researcher on Lev Vygotsky's Psychology of Art at the Institute for East European Studies (Freie Universität Berlin). He is teaching at Szondi-Institute for Comparative Literature and Institute for East European Studies. He worked as assistant director of the documentary film "Familienleben" which premiered at Berlinale 2018. The film was nominated for German Documentary Film Award and was awarded prizes at Saratov Sufferings Festival (RU) and Neisse Filmfestival (GER). He's currently working on documentary films for Institute of Contemporary Art Yerevan and Deutsche Gesellschaft e.V.

Thibaut de Ruyter

Thibaut de Ruyter is a French curator and critic who lives and works in Berlin since 2001. In the last ten years, he has organized exhibitions at Kunstmuseum Bochum, Museum Kunstpalais Düsseldorf, Museum of Applied Arts in Frankfurt, HMKV in Dortmund, EIGEN + ART Lab and CTM in Berlin, Muzeum Sztuki in Łódź and CRP / in Douchy-les -Mines. One of his latest projects is a travelling exhibition co-curated with Inke Arns for the Goethe-Institut: The Frontier that calls into question the dividing line between Asia and Europe in the former Soviet states. Since 2017 this exhibition has been exhibited in St Petersburg, Moscow, Tashkent, Almaty, Krasnoyarsk (u.A.) and will open in Erevan in May 2019. His areas of interest range from new media to spiritualism to "exhibitions that are not exhibitions". Most of his projects are related to everyday, pop or underground culture. He has been the German correspondent for the French magazine artpress since 2003.

Alexandra Vetter

Alexandra Vetter is a film maker currently based in Berlin. In 2010, she achieved a Master Degree in theatre, film and media studies at the Goethe University in Frankfurt. She then specialized in creating documentary films and shorts, filming in Germany, the UK, Russia, Italy and Ireland. During her stay in Dublin from 2013-2019, she was co-organiser of an independent film group Dublin Filmmakers Collective, where she regularly held film-making events, workshops as well as film screenings. Her works have been screened at several film festivals including REFLECTA – Rethink Your World, Frankensteiner Film Festival, Open Film Festival Weiterstadt, International Theatre Festival Frankfurt am Main "Sommerwerft" and Underground Cinema Film Festival in Dublin. Her video works were shown at the Historische Museum Frankfurt, at the World Cultural Museum and the exhibition hall 1A in Frankfurt. More recently she has been exploring the topic of age and ageing.

Lioudmila Voropai

Lioudmila Voropai is a curator, art critic and media artist. She studied philosophy at the Russian State University for the Humanities (RGGU) in Moscow and New Media Art at the Academy of Media Arts (KHM) in Cologne. Her curatorial and artistic projects are mainly focused on issues related to institutional critique and fake as an artistic strategy. As an art critic, she contributes to XZ Moscow Art Magazine, Art Issue, Logos and other periodicals. She is also a translator and editor of the Russian translations of Jürgen Habermas (Legitimation Crisis), Slavoj Zizek (Parallax View), Giorgio Agamben (State of Exception), Michael Walzer (The Company of Critics) among others. Lioudmila Voropai is an adjunct professor for Media Theory and Philosophy at Karlsruhe University of Arts and Design.

17th January 2020

On the loop

interview

en

23rd December 2019

"Мы сёння знаходзімся ў іншай вытворчай драме"

interview

Работай Больше! Отдыхай Больше!
by

5th December 2019

Another production drama

interview

Interview with WORK HARD! PLAY HARD! working group
en

20th November 2019

Wandering poetics of Central Asian mestizas

interview

Interview with Krëlex Zentre
en

6th November 2019

Conversation with Julieta Aranda and Anna Kamay

interview

en

29th October 2019

Where the roses grow

interview

Interview with Almagul Menlibaeva
en

25th October 2019

On language of supremacy: Medina Bazargali in conversation

interview

en

16th October 2019

Interiors

portrait

Exhibition by Xenia Fink In Ta(r)dino 6 Baku
en

10th October 2019

Madina Tlostanova on decolonizing the post-Soviet, exotization and political imagination(s)

interview

part two
en

26th September 2019

Madina Tlostanova on feminism, coloniality, returned pasts and reimagined futures

interview

part one
en

6th September 2019

It is more important to make films queerly than to make queer films

interview

en

12th July 2019

When there are no opputurnities, create your own Giardini

article

Asli Samadova
en

1st July 2019

Juggling Dinosaurs

article

The precariousness of motherhood in arts
Anna Kamay
en

24th June 2019

Interview with Elene Abashidze

interview

en

14th June 2019

Unfortunately, we cannot pay for your flight and accommodation

article

Thibaut de Ruyter
en

28th May 2019

Ich liebe dich!

article

Antonina Stebur
de

17th May 2019

Interview with Anna Vahrami

interview

en

23rd April 2019

Artist Portrait: Anastasia Akhvlediani

portrait

en

13th April 2019

Artist Portrait: Alisa Berger

article

Thibaut de Ruyter
en

21st March 2019

Faig Ahmed

interview

Interview geführt von Ira Konyukhova und Pavel Metelitsyn
de

18th March 2019

There Is Sex After Soviet Union!

article

Irina Konyukhova
en

11th March 2019

Interview mit Samvel Saghatelian

interview

Geführt von Ira Konyukhova
de

8th March 2019

Artist Portrait: Salome Dumbadze

portrait

en

4th March 2019

Interview mit Chinara Majidova

interview

Geführt von Ira Konyukhova
de

26th February 2019

East Wind - Art in the Former Soviet Republics

article

Thibaut de Ruyter
en
Elene Abashidze at Museum für Angewandte Kunst, Frankfurt-am-Main
Photo by Andro Eradze
Danarti Issue 5 - Georgia 1990's Tips on Survival presented on "Lara protects me", Museum für Angewandte Kunst, Frankfurt-am-Main
Photo by Andro Eradze
Danarti Nr 9, Tbilisi Style, November 2018
Page from the Magazine
Danarti presentation at Maudi, Tbilisi
Photo by Andro Eradze
Danarti presentation at Maudi, Tbilisi
Photo by Andro Eradze

Elene Abashidze is an independent curator and since 2011 a publisher of Danarti Magazine, together with Ana Chorgolashvili and Irine Jorjadze. Some of her recent curatorial works include Safe Words, with Cristine Brache and Penny Goring, an inaugural exhibition for E.A. Shared Space, ongoing; Twelve Women Gone Missing, a group exhibition with ten emigrant female artists of Georgian descent, in the frames of Tbilisi Art Fair public program 2018.

TransitoryWhite

Dear Elene, thank you for finding time for this talk. We know each other through your husband, Andro Eradze, who is an artist and photographer and whom we met during our stay in Tbilisi last year. This is how I was introduced to the magazine you’re curating, Danarti. Considering how many art and art-related journals existing right now in Georgia, what prompted you to create your own magazine?

Elene Abashidze

Hi Ira! Yes, its thanks to Andro that we met!🌟

Danarti is a series of research-based thematic issues. Ran by three art historians/curators it operates as a curatorial platform. It contributes to the contemporary art discourse, but itself it rarely publishes contemporary art itself. For instance, we have no exhibition reviews. On the contrary, it is a multi-disciplinary magazine, which focuses on a theme, a sensation, a historical moment at a time - which is essential for the contemporary art scene of Georgia of the moment and tries to unpack these subjects as generously and widely terms of humanitarian disciplines, as possible.

Elene Abashidze at Museum für Angewandte Kunst, Frankfurt-am-Main
Photo by Andro Eradze

All of the issues differ from one another, thematically and structurally. They come out on an occasional basis. We are lucky to collaborate with the fantastic institution Kunsthalle Zurich, who support us financially and never put pressure on our production system.

We are bilingual, and yes we have some international audience, but first of all, we work for the development of the local culture. Culture production here is slow and detached from the crazy capitalistic ways of making. So, we are privileged to be slow too.

 

The lack of critical thought oriented magazines prompted us to create one of our own. Back then, it was cheap to produce a printed newspaper. We started with printed and Georgian only issue. From 2016 we are also online, where we upload and archive all content and distribute for free. 

We save our limited number of printed issues for various institutional exhibitions, etc.

TransitoryWhite

Once in a conversation we had over Facebook, you mentioned that you’re not satisfied with the hip designation of Tbilisi as a new Berlin. Would you please explain why?

Elene Abashidze

Tbilisi as some new Berlin is a branding of the city I would not agree with for various reasons. Firstly, it is created for the Western Gaze. To be more precise, it is created by Western European media for the Western European tourism and understanding, it is the Western European-centric branding, which we have seen happening earlier to other non-Western cultures and it has never worked as a good sign. For this only reason, I as a local person, would withdraw and ask others too to oppose this tag. 

Danarti Issue 5 - Georgia 1990's Tips on Survival presented on "Lara protects me", Museum für Angewandte Kunst, Frankfurt-am-Main
Photo by Andro Eradze

Another reason is simple - it is not valid. New Berlin in terms of what? Culture - it is very different, Economy? Tbilisi is way poorer than the poor Berlin itself. Nightlife? But is that all there is to either Berlin or Tbilisi?

TransitoryWhite

Many Georgian artists who studied abroad have adopted a certain kind of aesthetics which appeals to the European collectors and visitors. Speaking about their work, we cannot understand it while putting it in a national or any other geographical or identitarian context. It appears to have a very international, cosmopolitan look. How do you see this development from your perspective as Tbilisi-based curator?

Elene Abashidze

Let’s not forget that Contemporary Art was coined in the Western part of the world. It followed up with post-Modernism. Today there is a debate, and for good, on what constitutes the term? Especially after the East/West divide no longer exists, or so it claims. 

So there is no surprise some of the artists of Georgian decent adopt the former “Western” language of Contemporary Art and translate their non-Western background to the “universal”(Western) language.

But I see changes in the newer generation, which is one younger than me. I see a weak tendency of opposing this pressure of adapting to one particular style, and on the contrary, bring one's own language at play. This is a tide I noticed not only in the Caucasus but among other non-Western artists. With my most profound respect and admiration towards the Western European and American culture, I very much look forward to witnessing the tide become a strong wave.

Danarti Nr 9, Tbilisi Style, November 2018
Page from the Magazine

TransitoryWhite

What does it mean for Georgia to restore its identity in the context of youth culture?

Which way are the artists of Georgia moving in? What are their prospects and ambitions?

Elene Abashidze

Identity politics is still an issue in Georgia. There is no official cultural policy available in the country which at one hand is still “fighting against” it’s Soviet heritage and opens it’s doors to the “Western” narratives, and on another hand is creating a history of its own. 

Danarti presentation at Maudi, Tbilisi
Photo by Andro Eradze

With its unstable governments, it demolishes Soviet Architectural icons (Andropov's Ears, etc.) and takes down the Soviet symbols, but on the other hand, never changes the narrative in Stalin’s Museum in Gori. Lustration never happened here. It is an odd place - Georgia; you never know what to expect. So the youth is stuck in between blind admiration and blind opposition of its recent past. I guess this is the position to depart from.

 

Danarti presentation at Maudi, Tbilisi
Photo by Andro Eradze

This Interview is a part of the first TransitoryWhite publication, supported by Freie Universität Berlin, Ost-Europäische Institut. 

 

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