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A Video Installation by Borjana Ventzislavova

After the presentation of part of the project That Thing at the Sofia City Gallery in the exhibition Bulgarian artistsliving in Vienna last year, The Fridge presents new, further developed and more complete version of the installation.

“That Thing” is long-term and large-scale project of Borjana Ventzislavova. The core of the project is the form of monologue. The stories of the respondents acquired the importance of personal statements, manifests and even confessions. The scenario is the same for all – they sit in their favourite chair outside on the street in urban environments and have exactly five minutes to present their views on the Bulgarian scene – what defines it, what processes are relevant to it, what is appreciated or not, what is their personal relation to and position in this cultural space, etc. There are two important conditions. The first is that each participant should use no more or no less than the specified 5 min. If his/her story ends earlier, he/she remains sitting on the chair until the 5 minutes are over. The second condition is not to mention expressions like, “the Bulgarian contemporary art scene”.

The title of the project is “That Thing”. On one hand, it feels like a jealously guarded secret – something that is not often and openly discussed, on the other hand moving away the interviews  from pure documentary and associates them with an artistic gesture, something hard to be defined and explained.

The motives of Borjana Ventzislavova are clear.  Bulgarian contemporary art requires for years reflection, rigorous analysis, critical evaluation and positioning to the national or global realities. And that is why the artist decides that the most objective view to this question would be to meet personally with each and to capture his/her view on these subjects. The participants are of course those individuals who set the direction of the process – artists, curators, gallery owners, critics, art managers.

Another semantic level is based on an important specific about contemporary artists who was born in Bulgaria – the fact that many of them live and work abroad. Local professionals are mixed with those who do not physically attend daily events in Bulgaria. Depending on that fact Ventzislavova moves her camera from Sofia, Plovdiv or Chernomorets to Vienna and from New York to Paris.

Starring Alla Georgieva (Artist, Sofia), Boris Kostadinov (Curator, Vienna), Boryana Rossa (Artist, Sofia), Bozhidar Boyadzhiev (Artist, Sofia), Daniela Radeva (Curator, Sofia), Dessislava Dimova (Critic, Brussels),  Houben Tcherkelov (Artist, New York), Gredi Assa (Artist, Sofia), Emil Mirazchiev (Artist, Plovdiv), Galina Dimitrova – Dimova (Curator, Sofia), Gaudenz Ruf (Collector), Iara Boubnova (Curator, Sofia), Kalin Serapionov (Artist, Sofia), Kiril Prashkov (Artist, Sofia), Krassimir Terziev (Artist, Sofia), Ilina Koralova (Curator, Leipzig), Maria Vassileva (Curator, Sofia),  Nedko Solakov (Artist, Sofia), Petko Dourmana (Artist, Sofia), Pravdoliub Ivanov (Artist, Sofia), Svetlana Kuyumdzhieva (Curator, Sofia/Plovdiv), Vencislav Zankov (Artist, Sofia),  Vessela Nozharova (Curator, Sofia), Valentin Stefanoff & Nina Kovacheva (Artists, Paris),  Vladiya Michailova (Curator, Sofia), Vesselina Sarieva (Gallerist, Plovdiv),  Yovo Panchev (Curator, Sofia), Zlatin Orlov (Artist, Sofia)

More info at

Supported by Gaudenz B. Ruf, Goethe-Institut Bulgaria and Austrian Embassy Sofia.

11 – 25 December 2014

The Fridge, 8 Madrid Blvd., Sofia