CURATORIAL TALK BY INGA LĀCE
A SCREENING OF KAROL RADZISZEWSKI'S America is not ready for this
A curator visiting from Riga, Latvia, Inga Lāce will present a talk focused on her curatorial practice that often connects the art (historical) with social and political. She will highlight one of her recent curatorial projects at the Latvian Centre for Contemporary Art, a research and exhibition project titled "Portable Landscapes,” which examined art and life of the Latvian exile and emigrant communities throughout the 20th century. The project followed several artistic protagonists in the centers of the Latvian diaspora—Paris, Berlin, New York, Montreal and Sweden—and connected those individual stories of migration to a common network situated within the broader context of twentieth-century art history and wider processes of migration and globalization. "Portable Landscapes” aimed to create an understanding of our contemporary world that is informed by these historical events.
Lāce will also present Karol Radziszewski’s film America is not ready for this (2012), which was included in “Portable Landscapes” in Riga. The work illuminates the context of the New York art scene in the late 1960s and 1970s, a time when many of the Latvian diasporic artists would also be entering the scene and working.
The inspiration and starting point for Radziszewski’s film was the Polish artist Natalia LL’s stay in New York in 1977. Thirty-four years later, Karol Radziszewski decided to embark on a journey to America to meet with the artists and gallery owners that Natalia LL had met with during her stay in the United States. With only a few black-and-white photographs and some names scribbled in a small notebook, Radziszewski began his artistic investigation. He talked with the artists Marina Abramovic, Vito Acconci, AA Bronson and Carolee Schneemann; the gallerist Antonio Homem; the critic Douglas Crimp; and Warhol superstar Mario Montez. The protagonists of the film recall the atmosphere of New York in the 1970s, providing a picture of what Natalia LL would have been confronted with at that time.
Radziszewski revives Natalia LL’s memories, confronting both Polish and Western narratives of art history and raising a series of questions on issues such as gender, feminist art, conceptual art and queer and East-West relations and their impact on the art world in the context of the period of the Iron Curtain. The film is both a search for parallels between the artistic experiences of Natalia LL and Karol Radziszewski, as well as an attempt to examine the rules governing the positioning of artists in the art world, both in the 1970s and today.
Inga Lāce (1986) lives in Riga and is a curator at the Latvian Centre for Contemporary Art (LCCA). She was a curatorial fellow at De Appel arts centre, Amsterdam (2015-2016) and recently curated the exhibition It Won’t Be Long Now, Comrades! at Framer Framed, Amsterdam (2017, co-curated with Katia Krupennikova) and Shared History at the collection of the Art Museum Riga Bourse (2018). Lāce has co-edited the book Revisiting Footnotes. Footprints of the Recent Past in the Post-Socialist Region (with Ieva Astahovska, 2015). She has been co-curator of the 7th-10th editions of the contemporary art festival SURVIVAL KIT (2015-18). She is also co-curator of a research project "Portable Landscapes" which traces and contextualizing Latvian artists, emigration and exile stories throughout the 20th century (Villa Vassilieff, Paris, Latvian National Art Museum, 2018). She has been appointed curator of the Latvian Pavilion for the Venice Biennale in 2019.
Karol Radziszewski (b. 1980) lives and works in Warsaw (Poland) where he received his MFA from the Academy of Fine Arts in 2004. He works with film, photography, installations and creates interdisciplinary projects. His archive-based methodology crosses multiple cultural, historical, religious, social and gender references. Since 2005 he is publisher and editor-in-chief of DIK Fagazine. Founder of the Queer Archives Institute. His work has been presented in institutions such as the National Museum, Museum of Modern Art, Zacheta National Gallery of Art, Warsaw; Whitechapel Gallery, London; Kunsthalle Wien, Vienna; New Museum, New York; VideoBrasil, Sao Paulo; Cobra Museum, Amsterdam; Wroclaw Contemporary Museum, Museum of Contemporary Art in Krakow and Muzeum Sztuki in Lodz. He has participated in several international biennales including PERFORMA 13, New York; 7th Göteborg Biennial; 4th Prague Biennial and 15th WRO Media Art Biennale.