Fete cu idei [Băieți și picturi]/ Girls with Ideas [Boys and Painting]

Exhbition at Lateral ArtSpace, Paintbrush Factory, Cluj, Roundtables at the Paintbrush Factory, Cluj and ODD, Bucharest, and Publication, 2016

Originating from an initial idea by the English born artist, Giles Eldridge and developed through an on-going conversation with the Romanian artist, Delia Popa, this Project is intended to present some vital aspects of contemporary art practice as they are being played out in Bucharest today and consider how this milieu is different from that of Cluj. Broadly speaking, the differences could be characterised as follows: In Cluj there has been a well lauded recent history of predominantly male painters, based at Fabrica de Pensule acquiring international acclaim and commercial success. Whilst in Bucharest a distinctive feature is of women artists, typically not studio based and involved in a wide range of art practices that are transdisciplinary and fluid and include painting, drawing, photography, performance, dance and collaborations largely taking place outside of a commercial framework. Playfully, one might describe the situation like this: Cluj is about boys and painting. Bucharest is about girls with ideas.

The title of the project references two previous museum shows; Bad Girls at The New Museum of Contemporary Art, SoHo, New York City, 1994 and Good Girls, MNAC, Bucharest, 2013. It is an exercise in considering the persona and identity of individual artists alongside that of the two cities. It could also be seen as testing a hypothesis. At any event it should be considered as more of an artistic dialogue rather than a final curatorial thesis. The title format  [Băieţi şi picturi] is meant to indicate a reference to the painting scene in Cluj.

The exhibition in Cluj was the first element of the project, showing the work of 5 artists from Bucharest reflecting the multiplicity of approaches that seems intrinsic to the capital city. Next there was  a roundtable in Cluj and one in Bucharest to begin the dialogue. A publication that documents the project was produced in Bucharest in November 2016 that included images of the project alongside transcripts from the round tables. More about the project here