Synonyma. Index - tranzit collaboration 2007 May

9–9 May 2007

Monument to Transformation is a project focused on the topic of cultural, social and political ‘transformation’, primarily in the Czech Republic and in post-communistic Central-East Europe. Naturally, in the process the project had to redefine the preliminary geopolitical delimitation in favour of a more existential experience with the process of transformation. Now the project is examining the experience of transformation with sometimes unforeseen proximity in such countries of the so-called former Eastern Block, Spain, Greece, Portugal, Uruguay and Southeast Asia, amongst others. Monument to Transformation is an interdisciplinary environment comprising art, the humanities, economics and science. It is a permanent exhibition of art objects, archives, theoretical texts and spoken word, both live and archival, which is growing with time. It is a permanent exhibition that constantly questions its formal appearance, which is based in Prague and has been expanding since 2006. The goal we envision is to expand, transform and reinstall Monument to Transformation until at least 2009. From this permanent exhibition arises the idea of fragments, which is put into practise on the occasion of the exhibitions. Each fragment is a new addition to the growing installation of Monument to Transformation and, afterwards, each exhibition becomes a part of it.

In Installation Model – Fragment # 4, which will be installed at Index within the framework of a long-term collaboration titled Synonyma, two completely different positions meet, thus indicating the range of the entire project.

Vangelis Vlahos is an artist with a long-standing interest in comparing and confronting the language of architecture with that of politics and economic power in his exhibitions. This installation by Vangelis Vlahos, conceived for Monument to Transformation, is based on the funding of the renovation of the former Bosnian parliament building in Sarajevo by the Greek State and deals in general with Greece’s role in the Balkans over the last 15 years.

Zbyněk Baladrán will exhibit a selection from the archive of Willi Najvar, an amateur photographer from Brno. Zbyněk Baldrán’s exploration of family and private photographic and film archives was one of Monument to Transformation’s first investigations. In an advert he had published in the daily press, he called on anyone who might be interested to send him photographs from their family archives connected thematically with an unspecified ‘transformation’. Two key questions for Zbyněk Baladrán are why and, even more importantly, how such an archive should be exhibited. He created a system of diagrams and textual constructions to justify a classification system comprising photo series, selected themes and individual photographs.

Fritz Quasthoff, Sweden, works with a project without a defined time frame where Index’ exhibition space and activities serves as a starting point for his analyses. Fritz Quasthoff’s engagement consists of a series of interventions, oscillating between sculpture and design. For the Synonyma exhibitions at Index Fritz Quasthoff has produced a set of walls and objects, formally relating to interior- or architectural details, and which will be used by the artists exhibiting, throughout the exhibition period.

Initiators of Monument to Transformation are Zbyněk Baladrán, artist, and Vít Havránek, curator, both based in Prague, Czech Republic. Monument of Transformation is a project supported by the ERSTE Foundation.

The exhibition is organised by Vít Havránek, local leader of tranzit, Prague.

Synonyma background and other programme Index and tranzit coordinates a parallel programme focusing exchange of ideas and production. This spring exhibitions will be staged in Stockholm, while Kajsa Dahlberg, who recently exhibited at Index, has been staying in Prague to conceptualise a new work commissioned by Index and tranzit. Two screenings will be arranged by Index at Kino Svetozor in Prague, showing films by Harun Farocki, 26 April, and Adrian Piper, 24 May, as a part of tranzit’s regular screening series.

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