The scandalous artist Oleg Kulik will perform in Riga
Oleg Kulik (born in 1961, Kiev) is one of the most important Eastern Europe contemporary art representatives. His provocative performances now gained the status of art history classics and influenced lots of campaign art representatives and formed contemporary art language in a global art scene. One of the most important performances was held at „Andalūzijas Suns” and „La Cucaracha” restaurant in 1998, it, therefore, made a great impact on the local arts society. While celebrating the 15th anniversary of the performance, Kulik agreed to visit Riga again with the initiative of curator Ieva Kalniņa in order to give lecture about the elements of performance.
When explaining the upcoming lecture structure, artists says that it is gonna be a speech performance: „It concerts the issues about us, what we went through, what is now and will be, about the contemporary arts, relationships between Russia and Latvia”.
International contemporary art exhibition „Horizontu meklējot” is organized within the thematic line „Thirst for the Ocean” of „Rīga 2014”. The main exhibition focus is the seeking nature of arts related to the essence of art, gaining towards ideals, the desire to be at unexplored crossing points. The exhibition is curated by Ieva Kalniņa.
Creative laboratory works of „Horizontu meklējot” are held in 2012 and 2013 when the artistic ideas are prepared and checked for „Horizontu meklējot”. This laboratory is a platform for short-term artist collaboration that is made in order to improve cross-working in several art fields. Therefore, the impact of arts is researched in order to find the best solution for exhibits, also other art impact aspects are explored. „Miers” is the seventh and last laboratory work for this exhibition use.
Campaign is organized by The Latvian Centre for Contemporary Art in cooperation with Mūkusala Art gallery and „Rīga 2014” Foundation. Supported by „Monhe Negro” restaurant, „Neiburgs” restaurant-hotel and „Ulma” typography.
Oleg Kulik is born in Kiev, 1961, but his creative activity is related to Moscow where he lives and works from 1986. Kulik is one of the brightest Moscow contemporary artists who got recognition in West, as well. The way Kulik works, his impressive attitude, virtuousity and radicalism is no doubts based in Russian roots. At the same time, his art is based in Soviet-ish field if looking from the chronological and typological perspective. He is rather connected with soc-art and Moscow conceptualism.
At the same time, Kulik belongs to later and much more different cultural development field in new Russia. Brightness, impressive activities, parody to glamour, politically challenging nature reflects on characteristics that are mostly related to „Moscowian breakaway” in modern art and other fields.
Oleg Kulik has the higher technical education at Kiev Geology Institute, also finished an art school. His real education started in the army (from 1984 to 1986, he served at the Red Flag division of Taman) and the artistic crowd of Moscow. His artistic beginning was bright and crazy. He has gained a title „man-dog”. Such works as „Ar jums es esmu zvērs” („I am an animal when I’m with you”)„Cilvēks ar politisku seju” („A man with a political face”), „Zoocentrisma pieredzes” („Zoocentric experiences”) and „Izvēles brīvība” („The freedom of choice”) show the provocative and critical nature of this period.
Later, the artist widened his repertoire while working in traditional photography, photomontage, started to create „sculptures” and instalations. From shapeless forms and characters he moved towards „the beauty” field and then asked the question about the issue of serious in public as well as asked about the necessity of Faith. Kuliks takes part in international exhibitions (Venice, Sao Paulo, Istanbul biennals) as well as in Paris, Vienna, Barcelona, Kyoto, New York and Cologne.
His works are important in „Art-Moskva” Expo, as well. Kuliks also works in theatre. He made the liturgy opera „Svētās Jaunavas Marijas vesperes” when dedicating it to Diagilev’s birthday on the theatre stage in Paris.
Oleg Kulik is also significant with his witty and sharp interviews. „...Currently there are events that I cannot watch without tears in my eyes. Modern art...there are such „fat cats” as Jeff Koons and Damien Hirst, they would like to war brilliants all around them...But there are novatoric flows in art, as well. That is why it’s interesting to mix all this fat and nervosity, this research and all.”
(Art historian Ivans Cečots)