Garage Museum of Contemporary Art Announces the Winners of Travel Grants for International Curators


27 Feb 2017

Garage Museum of Contemporary Art is pleased to announce the winners of its travel grants for international curators. These grants will be used to enable the winning curators to attend the first Garage Triennial of Russian Contemporary Art which runs from March 10 to May 14, 2017.

The winners, selected from a diverse international pool of established curators, will spend four days in Moscow, where they will explore the largest survey of contemporary Russian art to date.

The winners are: Riksa Afiatry (Indonesia), Celenk Bafra (Turkey), Lizaveta German (Ukraine), Jarret Gregory (United States), Albert Heta (Kosovo), Li Qi (China), Joanna Sokolowska (Poland), Polly Staple (Great Britain), Chen Tamir (Israel), and Diana Ukhina (Kyrgyzstan).

Garage received more than 130 applications from 44 countries, including Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, Georgia, Germany, Iceland, Philippines, Serbia, and Sweden. The applicant pool comprised a wide variety of curators from institutions, nonprofits, and experimental arts spaces, as well as a variety of nomadic and independent curators. The winners were chosen from this extremely competitive group for the promise they demonstrated in engaging with and continuing the dialogue initiated by the Triennial. The Travel Grant covers return airfare and accommodation for four days in Moscow during the Triennial’s run.

In preparation for the Triennial, Garage has embarked on the largest-ever survey of art practices across Russia. Presenting works from more than 60 artists from across the country, the exhibition captures the zeitgeist of some of the most active and influential figures of the past five years, offering insight into the diversity of social tendencies that constitute the underexplored Russian art scene.

Working with Garage’s regional network of art practitioners to navigate local contexts across the vast and diverse country, the curators met with over 200 artists, ranging from 19 to 69 years old. From this research they identified seven “vectors,” or tendencies, through which the current art life of Russia could be broadly understood. These range from a strong fidelity to place and a drive to create elaborate mythological worlds, to the use of art practice as activism, or as a mechanism to participate in international discourse. Often isolated and working in the absence of established cultural infrastructure, what unites the artists is resourcefulness and a powerful belief in art as a way of life.

The Triennial will take place in the Museum and the surrounding area of Gorky Park. For the opening of the exhibition, all participating artists will be invited to Moscow to facilitate the development of a country-wide, peer-to-peer network.

Garage Triennial is the latest development in an extensive program that the Museum is undertaking to build a stronger infrastructure for contemporary Russian art, which ranges from the Garage Grant Program for Emerging Artists to the establishment of Garage Archive in 2012.