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Case in Point: Hyper Local

Thursday, June 20 at 7 pm

Artis and CCA – Center for Contemporary Art Tel Aviv present “Hyper Local,” an evening panel discussion in the “Case in Point” series that brings together curators from around the world to discuss their practice and analyze current developments in cultural programming. In recent years, artists and curators have been increasingly exploring their own local histories – cultural, political, personal, and communal – in order to question prevailing hegemonic narratives. Three curators from institutions in Latvia, The Philippines, and Israel will share ways in which they have incorporated multiple perspectives into their work. Referencing their own recent curatorial projects, the speakers will address questions such as: What is the responsibility of cultural institutions to the communities in which they reside? How do cultural institutions make themselves relevant, accessible, and responsive to the various communities that they work with, and what are the challenges? Who are we talking about when we say community?

Inga Lāce will focus on two projects that trace Latvian cultural development. The first one, “Revisiting Footnotes: Footprints of the Recent Past in the Post-Socialist Region,” focuses on the country in the 1990s-2000s and the second, titled “Portable Landscapes” traces and contextualizes Latvian artists’ emigration and exile throughout the 20th century. Following the lifelines of a number of artistic protagonists, the series explores the major centers of the Latvian diaspora: Paris, New York, West Berlin, Montreal, and the Swedish island of Gotland. By relating individual stories and chapters of migration to a common network situated within the broader context of 20th century art history and wider processes of migration and globalization, the project aims to create an understanding of our contemporary world that is informed by these historical events. The shift of focus from the post-Soviet condition to migration connects the local Latvian art scene to a broader set of concerns and changes in the world.

Manila-based researcher and curator Renan Laru-an will consider his curatorial projects and roles in different contexts of arts production and presentation as instances of development of cultural infrastructures and networks among disparate localities. His role as curator of the 8th OK.Video – Indonesia Media Arts Festival, Jakarta (2017); and his current commitment as a curator of the Singapore Biennale 2019 will be vectors that ground this articulation of the curatorial as a mode of institution-building and as a trans-local strategy for international solidarity.

Karni Brazilay will discuss the often incompatible agendas of simultaneously addressing the larger international art world and the local community in which her institution, Kav 16 – Community Gallery for Contemporary Art, is based. Brazilay will unpack how Kav 16’s programming addresses two different audiences: the professional art community and the nearby residents of Neve Eliezer, a low-income neighborhood on the outskirts of Tel Aviv – and how this duality raises numerous questions about the perception of contemporary art in a community center focused on education and culture. In the talk, she will focus on three exhibitions that she has curated over the last two years: “Nimby” by Tamar Nissim and Tal Eliezer Rosen; “’1/3 Ton,” a solo exhibition by Orly Hummel;  and “Kneading the Torso Makes a Buzz,” featuring Abraham Kritzman and Marlene Steyn in collaboration with writer Àngels Miralda. Brazilay is currently is working on an anthology that survey’s the gallery’s twenty years of activity.

The panel will be held in English and will be followed by a Q&A moderated by Udi Edelman, Curator and Director of the Institute for Public Presence, the Israeli Center for Digital Art, Holon.

About the Speakers

Karni Barzilay is Curator of Kav 16 Community Gallery for Contemporary Art in Tel Aviv and in the past ten years has curated solo and group exhibitions in galleries and museums around Israel. She holds a master’s degree from the Interdisciplinary Program in the Arts at Tel Aviv University and a diploma from the Curatorial and Museum Studies program at Tel Aviv University. Her master’s thesis dealt with Israeli art museum web pages as spaces for communication.  

Inga Lāce 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) where she examined the intertwined relationships between nature and culture, (art) institutions and ecology, resulting in a symposium titled “Instituting Ecologies” (October, 2016) and a publication (forthcoming in 2019).  She recently curated the exhibitions “It Won’t Be Long Now, Comrades!” at Framer Framed, Amsterdam (2017, co-curated with Katia Krupennikova) and “Shared History” at the Art Museum Riga Bourse (2018). Lāce co-edited the book “Revisiting Footnotes. Footprints of the Recent Past in the Post-Socialist Region” (with Ieva Astahovska, 2015). She co-curated of the 7th to10th editions of the contemporary art festival SURVIVAL KIT (2015-19). She is also co-curator of a research project “Portable Landscapes,” tracing and contextualizing Latvian artists’ emigration and exile stories throughout 20th century (Villa Vassilieff, Paris, Latvian National Art Museum, 2018). She is co-curator with Valentinas Klimasauskas of the Latvian Pavilion for the Venice Biennale in 2019 with the artist Daiga Grantina.Lāce is currently working on a research project looking at the science fiction and imaginations of alternative futures historically in the Soviet Union, as well as currently, for a project at the Latvian National Art Museum in December 2019.

Renan Laru-an is a researcher, curator, and the Public Engagement and Artistic Formation Coordinator at the Philippine Contemporary Art Network (PCAN). Between 2012 and 2015, he directed the Philippine-based DiscLab | Research and Criticism, a multidisciplinary platform and “virtual” organization for critical writing, theory, discursive activities, and long-term research on Philippine contemporary art as well as visual and network culture. He is currently working as one of the curators of the Singapore Biennale 2019, “Every Step in the Right Direction.״ With support from the National Commission for Culture and the Arts, he is currently conducting comparative research on culture-based and community-oriented publications in Mindanao, Philippines, that operated on the vision of “dialogs between Muslims and non-Muslims.”

Admission is free, but RSVP required by emailing

Image: Tamar Nissim and Tal Eliezer Rosen, Nimby #7. Still from video, 2017.

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