“Riga 2014” Events during the White Night

“Riga 2014” Events during the White Night
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The ninth annual contemporary culture forum White Night takes place in Riga on the 6th of September, this time drawing inspiration from Georges Méliès’ 1902 film “Le Voyage Dans La Lune”. The forum encompasses a broad variety of events, including a number of events that are part of the “Riga 2014” Programme: harvest festival at the “Garden of Freedom”, poetry readings, creation of a new urban alphabet, and a special programme brought to you by the contemporary art festival “Survival Kit 6”.

Urban Alphabet” at the Culture Chalet

The digital art project “Urban Alphabet” will be at the culture chalet “Esplanade 2014” from 6 p.m. to 1 a.m. The project is part of the three-year (2013-2015) “Connecting Cities Network” art project involving nine cities in Europe. The idea of the “Urban Alphabet” was proposed by the new media researcher, architect and urban planner Suse Miessner from Finland. The project is based on a mobile app that makes it possible for people to create an alphabet from letters they photograph in the urban environment.

Prominent cultural, art and design personalities will present their alphabets, and any visitor to the cultural chalet will have the opportunity to create his or her custom urban alphabet postcard. Whereas “Lattelecom” Film Nights this time presents Michel Gondry’s “Mood Indigo” “L’ecume des jours” at 9 p.m.

The “Urban Alphabet” will become the basis for a new object at the “Staro Rīga” festival of light, which this year will continue from the 14th to 18th of November. The “Urban Alphabet” events will also take place at the Esplanade on the 12th and 13th of September from 6 p.m. to 1 a.m.

In addition, the Japanese artist Nishi Masaaki is visiting Riga as part of the Latvia-Japan Co-operation Programme. The artist has excavated a large hole next to the Esplanade and created an interactive installation there, revealing layers of earth and various remains of objects that have remained in the ground for centuries to tell various stories of the City of Riga. The project will close during the White Night forum at midnight on the 6th of September, when the hole will be filled.

Shine of Poetry at Jānis Akuraters Museum

The “Café Spleen or Augusts 1914” series of events, which mark the 100th anniversary of World War I and commemorate Latvian artists who participated in the war, will run until the 12th of September at Jānis Akuraters Museum. During the White Night, the museum will host the programme “The Night. Indeterminate Shine”, starting at 6 p.m. on the 6th of September.

The White Night poetry workshop will be run by Jānis Rokpelnis. The workshop will feature poems on the theme of World War I and several artists’ audio-visual works created in response to war – then and now. Music – Edmunds Frīdvalds and Andželika Frīdvalde. Objects of light and video projections by Anna Rasmus, Vika Eksta, the “Idea Gnosis” group, and Vitālijs Vinogradovs will be on show in the museum’s garden.

Harvest Festival at the Garden of Freedom

The closing ceremony of the Garden of Freedom, one of the events on the “Riga 2014” Programme, will continue until 9 p.m. tonight at the Vidzeme Market’s Meat Pavilion (Brīvības iela 90, Riga). Various plants have been grown in the vertical garden in the centre of the city, and now the time for harvest has come. Tonight, the plants are harvested in the garden and prepared to be stored for the winter, the Garden Orchestra workshop will be hosted by the Lithuanian artist Ruta Vitkauskaite, followed by a performance of the Orchestra of Vegetables, and closing with the “Aronia Overture”.

Opening of Renovated Square in Ziepniekkalns

One of the stages of the “Riga 2014” project “Development Campaign for Good Locations” (“Labas vietas TALKA”) will take place in Ziepniekkalns neighbourhood – the opening of the square at the intersection of Dižozolu Street and Valdeķu Street that has been refurbished and renovated by local residents in collaboration with architects. The event will feature a workshop of portraits for Ziepniekkalns residents and a “Laima” chocolate workshop for children, a performance and a master class by the ensemble “Caucasus”, planting of oak seedlings, and salsa master classes run by the “Dance Star” studio. The events will close at 9 p.m. with turning on lights in the windows of apartment buildings in Ziepniekkalns.

Rīgas kino” Presents...

“Riga 2014” Programme presents the “Rīgas kino” film screenings during the White Night from 8 p.m. to midnight at the Eduards Smiļģis Theatre Museum (E.Smiļģa iela 37/39, Riga). The programme includes films created by schoolchildren during the “Rīgas kino” master classes and workshops – short films created at the Riga State German Grammar School and “Multeņkulteņi” workshop of animated films in Fricis Brīvzemnieks’ Primary School. The film screenings will close with several Latvian film classics.

“Survival Kit” during the White Night

As usual, the contemporary art festival “Survival Kit” has prepared a special programme for the White Night. Both central exhibitions of the festival will be on show in Wagner Hall and at “Boļševička”, and both venues will also host events created specifically for the White Night

The Wagner Hall will host an audiovisual concert. Participants: “Visible Solutions” (Estonia), Mārtiņš Roķis (Latvia), “Ruben Patino” (Spain/Germany), Lee Gamble & Dave Gaskarth (Great Britain).

The former textiles factory “Boļševička”, on the other hand, will be the venue for a ten-hour performance titled “I-X”, which starts already at 2 p.m. Kabir Carter’s (the United States), project transcends the boundaries of architecture and sound, physical and acoustic body. Kabir Carter is a performance, installation and sound artist from New York, who creates lengthy performances studying the physical and emotional effects of the architecture and acoustics of private and public places. At 8 p.m., “Lattelecom” Film Programme will begin at “Boļševička”, this time with the emphasis on utopia and dystopia. The audience will have the opportunity to watch Georgiy Daneliya’s legendary film “Kin-dza-dza!” (1986) and Spike Jonze’s film “Her” (2013).

Creative Fog at the “Café Europa” Container

In Spīķeri, where “Café Europa”, also a “Riga 2014” project, commenced at the end of August, the RIXC Centre for New Media Culture invites everyone to discover the scientist within and take part in the “Fog” creative workshops. The workshops take place at the “Café Europa” container in Spīķeri that houses thematically diverse creative workshops and exhibitions every week.

During the White Night, visitors to “Café Europa” will have a chance to participate in creative workshops where the phenomenon of fog is explored and explained, becoming participants in artistic and scientific experiments involving fog, which will close with a fog and sound performance by the outstanding Dutch artist Edwin van der Heide.

Any visitor to the café during the White Night will be able to observe the scientific experiments, whereas those who wish to participate and create own custom fog clouds had to apply in advance by writing to rixc@rixc.lv. The artistic and scientific workshops start at 3 p.m. and 6 p.m.

“Café Europe” will also host an installation by the Belgian artist Annemie Maes titled “Foraging Fields”, which deals with beekeeping and mapping the foraging fields in the city. The artist will also inform visitors about urban beekeeping and run several creative workshops where honey batteries will be made and beehives for urban bees will be designed.

Activities in Riga Creative Quarters

Riga creative quarters present their own version of the White Night and contemporary culture, this time under the auspices of the contemporary art festival “Survival Kit”. That is why the events at the creative quarters during the White Night explore the theme of the “Survival Kit” festival this year – “Utopian City”.

I-dejas māja” - “Survival Kit for a Harmonious Person”

On the 6th of September, the laboratory of stage arts “I-dejas māja” (Rūpniecības iela 32b- 1F) presents a night of performances, “Utopia Called Harmony”, where, based on the findings of past researches, teachers from “I-dejas māja” and their students will present performances in the backyard and in the vicinity of the building. Participants will have a chance to attend “I-dejas māja” teachers’ master classes.

"Red River Pearls” in Sarkandaugava

The White Night project “Red River Pearls” (“Sarkanās upes pērles”) is dedicated to the Sarkandaugava neighbourhood of Riga. The experimental artwork/performance, created by ten artists and directed by Dmitrijs Petrenko, will be performed in Sarkandaugava Park at 7 p.m. and 9 p.m. on the 6th of September. Other activities start earlier in the day and continue late into the night – creative workshops for families, audiovisual installation “Neibarts. 75 Pearls for Sarkandaugava”, Laura Appena’s open-air photography exhibition “Sarkandaugava”, and others.

Re-Vision “Daugavgrīva Castle”

A group of artists from Bolderāja neighbourhood has prepared a special White Night programme for Daugavgrīva Castle. The programme will run from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. on the 6th of September, demonstrating how revision of historical materials can be transformed overnight into the vision of a castle as an ideal place for art. Putting the castle on the cultural map of Riga will help the public notice the potential of the edifice and learn about its importance for the history of the neighbourhood.

“Struck by a Star” readings will take place at the Daugavgrīva Castle’s gate at 7 p.m. and 9 p.m. Author – Mārtiņš Galenieks, director – Jānis Znotiņš, cast: Jānis Znotiņš, Uldis Siliņš, Andrejs Možeiko and others. Video projections by Armīns Ozoliņš, Līva Nordmane and Mārtiņš Rusmanis will be on show from 8 p.m. to 11 p.m.  Also, night tours of the castle by guides from Bolderāja Tourism Network will be at 8 p.m. and 10 p.m.

Public transport: take bus No. 3 or microbus No. 246 to the Daugavgrīva Castle bus stop.

Mundane Space and Carte Blanche in Spīķeri

In addition to scientific and artistic activities at “Café Europa” in Spīķeri Creative Quarter,  a “Dirty Deal Teatro” theatrical performance on the theme of relations between humans and the higher power (God, destiny, space, etc.) will take place in Spīķeri. The contemporary art centre “kim?” will host multimedia performances as part of the “Aspen-Kemmern” project, where a participant will be given carte blanche to implement some particular idea. The Spīķeri Quarter will also feature other performances, projects, workshops and VJ performances.

A full programme of the White Night for this year is available at www.baltanakts.lv.

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