A Cornered Solo Show

by Alain Chivilò


After Rome and Luxembourg the installation conceived by Nedko Solakov “A Cornered Solo Show” becomes the #3 in Vienna, at Upper Belvedere, from 24 November 2023 to 19 June 2024.

The Bulgarian artist has decided, as personal path, to propose his artistic creations not in the main rooms designed to host events but in areas used by the public, by visitors who often go almost unnoticed because interests are elsewhere in events, works, architecture and more inside the host location. In such manner, through various projects, Solakov inserts personal artistic interventions, taking advantage of areas that are almost always free and available.

Inside the museum’s coatroom/cloakroom, “A Cornered Solo Show #3 (with Charles Esche as my artistic conscience)”, the word cornered recalls his conscience but also that education methodology, especially in the past, young children were ordered to go to a corner for behavior deemed inappropriate or uncorrect. A metaphor that, in a different way, happens today in society among religions, ethnic groups, lack of knowledge, bullying, interests and hearsay. As explained Solakow “Go to that corner, you b5-year-old dreamer and until you have a really clear idea of what this solo show of yours will look like, you must stay there, cornered!”. In summary an intellectual, mental, psychological, spiritual, emotional, of the mind connection and dialogue with his artistic consciousness, personified by his long-time friend and companion, curator and museum director Charles Esche.

Continuing, about the installation the artist stated: “as to be yery spontaneous and artsy-fartsy in front of my conscience/Charles, I decided to lix my thoughts and worries and questions and answers on these very spontaneously done cot- outs of primed canvas, which has stayed rolled up in the corner of my studio for a decade”. Furthermore, as highlighted “Here it is, sort of a dialog between me and my conscience. This is not the first time I’ve argued with it and, frankly, as a rule, it always wins. Let’s see what will happen now”.

Nedko Solakov (1957, Cherven Bryag, Bulgaria, Sofia living). Since the early 1990s he has exhibited extensively in Europe and the US. His work was featured in Aperto’93 (Venice Biennial); the 48th, 49th, 50th and 52nd Venice Biennial; the 3rd, 4th and 9th Istanbul Biennial; Sâo PauIo’94; Manifesta 1, Rotterdam; the 2nd and 4th Gwangju Biennial; the Sth Lyon Biennial; Sonsbeek 9, Arnhem; the 4th and Sth Cetinje Biennial; the 1st Lodz Biennial; the 7th Sharjah Biennial, United Arab Emirates; the 3rd Tirana Biennial; the 2nd Seville Biennial; the 2nd Moscow Biennial; documenta 12; 16th Sydney Biennial; Prospect 1, New Orleans Biennial; Singapore Biennial 2011; dOCUMENTA (13); Kathmandu Triennale; 1st Riga International Biennial for Contemporary Art and Lahore Biennale 2. He had solo shows at Museu do Chiado, Lisbon; Stichting De Appel, Amsterdam; CCA Kitakyushu, Japan; Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, Madrid; The Israel Museum, Jerusalem; Centre d’Art Santa Monica, Barcelona; Kunsthaus Zürich; Castello di Rivoli Museo d’Arte Contemporanea, Rivoli; Sofia City Art Gallery; Galleria Borghese, Rome; Salzburger Kunstverein, Salzburg; BOZAR, Brussels; ICA- Sofia, La Panacée, Montpellier, Mudam Luxembourg, Musée d’Art Moderne Grand- Duc Jean, and MAXXI — Museo nazionale delle arti del XXI secolo, Rome. In 2003— 05 an extensive mid-career A 12 1/3 (and even more) Year Sorvey was presented at Casino Luxembourg, Rooseum Malmoe and OK Centrum Linz, and in 2008—09 the Emotions solo project was exhibited at Kunstmuseum Bonn, Kunstmuseum St. Gallen and Institut Mathildenhoehe, Darmstadt. In 2011—12 his retrospective All in Order, with Exceptions was presented at Ikon Gallery, Birmingham; Fondazione Galleria Civica Trento (All in (My) Order, with Exceptions), S.M.A.C.K., Ghent and Fundaçäo de Serralves, Porto. His works belong to more than fifty international museums and public collections, among them MoMA New York, Tate Modern, London and Centre Pompidou, Paris.


©AC, NDSL, AM, Alain Chivilo

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