On 1 June, the second exhibition of Latvian Centre for Contemporary Art’s exhibition cycle Divdabis opened at the Latvian National Museum of Art, featuring photographer, passionate experimenter with technologies and author of critically ironic commentary on Soviet society, Atis Ieviņš, and contemporary artist Inga Meldere.
Inga Lāce, curator of the exhibition Divdabis. Atis Ieviņš / Inga Meldere explains: “The idea originates from Atis Ieviņš’ photo-screenprint TV (1980), which shows a screen of a colour television set with an empty ice hockey goal. The work is characterised both by the author’s interest in colour television, which was rare in Soviet Latvia at the time, and the dullness of everyday life where television provided a brief respite from reality. In her new works created especially for the exhibition, Inga Meldere continues the reflection on the TV screen, its images and viewers from a contemporary perspective, taking into consideration today’s characteristic overload of visual material.”
Both artists share an experimental approach to the technical side of making an artwork. The portraits Atis Ieviņš’ created during the Soviet period, which will also be on show in the exhibition, are made in his unique technique of silver gelatin process. In the reaction between photographic paper from that period and silver developer, Ieviņš achieved a photographic image that resembles a painting. There are parallels to Inga Meldere’s experiments, where the artist first prints the image on a fabric, paints it over, occasionally prints it again or alters the sequence of actions, and, with the help of this complex technical process, creates light, transparent and subtle collages of images. While Ieviņš’ works suggest an ironic and sometimes critical perspective on Soviet society, Meldere is interested in both personal and art-historical images. By highlighting several unnoticed details and using them in collages, the artist strives to show to herself and the viewers new possibilities for interpreting the past and the present
The main financial supporters of the exhibition are State Culture Capital Foundation, ABLV Charitable Foundation and Riga City Council.
Divdabis. Inga Meldere and Atis Ieviņš
Curated by: Inga Lāce (Latvian Centre for Contemporary Art)
Latvian National Museum of Art, Riga, Latvia
Organizer: Latvian Centre for Contemporary Art, Riga, Latvia
June 1 – July 2, 2017
Photography: Didzis Grozs. All images copyright and courtesy of the artists and Latvian Centre for Contemporary Art and Latvian Museum of Contemporary Art ABLV Bank section’s collection