Alkatraz Gallery: Huiqin Wang & Metod Frlic: 社会主义图标 / The Icons of Socialism

You are kindly invited to the opening of the exhibition: 社会主义图标  / The Icons of Socialism, by Huiqin Wang & Metod Frlic, on Wednesday, 18th December 2013 at 8 pm, at Alkatraz Gallery, ACC Metelkova.

Artists / Authors of the concept: Huiqin Wang and Metod Frlic

Curator: Jadranka Plut

Video: Ciril Mlinar

Photographs: Saje Wang Liana

Production: Alkatraz Gallery

Huiqin Wang and Metod Frlic will introduce themselves at the Alkatraz Gallery with a new artwork, an installation incorporating various media, entitled 社会主义  / THE ICONS OF SOCIALISM. Icons of socialism represent a symbol of the past, the present, as well as the vision of a/the future. They stem from the historical experience of the East and West. The socialisms of the Federative Republic of Yugoslavia and of the People’s Republic of China have shared several similarities. Archive pictures depict the facts, reflecting the moments from the history of the West and East, offering us an opportunity to reflect on the present. Neoliberal powers have occupied both communist systems, and nowadays we can see it has been a financial occupation of only a few privileged ones. We, the people, have lost the state, social security, public health care, public educational system etc. A system that does not appreciate an individual, nor it cares for solidarity, has arisen. The issue is a very unjust distribution of goods that belong to everyone. Therefore we have to think of a new social system, one that will give a meaning of life to every individual.

The laws that enable accumulation of capital and deliver the possibility of absolute governance of a handful of people have to be removed. The system of values has to be re-evaluated; the valuable experiences from the history picked up, and adjusted to the present. The population of our planet is increasing, the quantity of natural resources is limited, therefore we have to change our lifestyle; we should not view everything through economic development and Gross National Income etc., as this is leading us to doom. That’s why they wish to expose the star as a symbol of changes in a society. The star constructed from bricks, not on speculative money.

The star, which has already given hope to numerous people and that, can fulfil it also now. (The project has been carried out at Cukrarna, bearing an evident historical message of the Slovene intellectual scene.) The result of the project, carried out at Cukrarna, is a video entitled The New Star of Solidarity. At the Alkatraz Gallery the artists are going to upgrade the project in the sense of the presentation of the work itself, by applying approaches through different media.

The contemporary language enables art to stroll among traditions while at the same time creatively manipulating and freely combining inspirations and ideas. The authors are constantly searching for new ways of expression, new emphases and outsets, so over the years their creativity has developed from classic paintings, sculptures, graphic works and illustrations, into direction of video, installations, and performances. Since the very beginning of its existence, the Alkatraz Gallery has been open to the artists who creatively represent the concept of life at the borders of different worlds.

The spatial installation of Huiqin Wang and Metod Frlic, that they will present at a group exhibition in our gallery space fits into this context. Its experience delivers a message that identity cannot be limited to geographical, social, economic, and political coordinates of an individual, or a group. This is an adjustable, yet unstable phenomenon; therefore it requires incessant attention and constant work  in facing the differentness and potential conflict. The art of Huiqin Wang and Metod Frlic is not a statement based on a declaration of belonging to one or another culture or nation; it is more of a search, identification, and definition of one’s own position and art-based worldview.

Huiqin Wang completed her studies of Chinese painting, calligraphy, and oil painting in Nanking, China, in 1978. In 1982 she came to Ljubljana, where she received additional education in the field of graphic art with Zvest Apollonio, and further on with prof. Emerik Bernard, in the field of painting. She has obtained more experience at the Minerva Art Academy in Gröningen, the Netherlands. The Chinese-Slovene artist acknowledges diversity in creativity, of which an important element is research. The author is primarily interested in painting, graphic art, illustration, calligraphy, video, performance, and ambient installation. Recently, she has been exploring the connections with artists of different artistic practices (dance, performance, computer art) and generations (Živko Marušič, Zora Stančič, Tomaž Lunder). Since 1981 she has had over 30 solo exhibitions at home and abroad.

Even more numerous is her participation at group exhibitions in Italy, Austria, Belgium, Germany, Macedonia, Croatia, the Netherlands, Portugal and China. Her works can be found in numerous private collections as well as museum and gallery collections all over the world. Huiqin Wang co-operates with Chinese and Taiwanese magazines like Shanghai Art World, Jiangsu Pictorial, Taiwan Today Art. It is with their help that she promotes Slovene culture. The author is the initiator of several incentives purposed to organize exhibitions of Slovene artists in China and vice versa; it was with her help that several Chinese artists have presented their creativity in Slovenia. Huiqin Wang has also organized several cultural exchanges between the two countries. We can easily say that she is a herald of Slovene visual arts’ creativity in China. In 2005 Huiqin Wang was proclaimed The Foreigner of the Year by the Slovenian Times magazine.

Metod Frlic was born on 20th December 1965 in Suša, in Poljanska dolina, Slovenia. After primary school, he continued his education at the secondary School for Design and Photography Ljubljana, at the Graphic Arts department. After completing the third year he enrolled at the Academy of Fine Arts and Design in Ljubljana, Sculpting department. He graduated in 1989 with prof.

Lujo Vodopivec, where he also continued his post-graduate study in 1990-91, and completed it in 1996. In 2008 he received an award acknowledging the artistic sense of his works at the University of Ljubljana. He has travelled the world ever since his completion of his secondary education. He spent the academic year of 1995 in Germany, and the one of 2000 in Japan. He has participated at international sculpturing symposiums in Austria, Hungary, Italy, and the United Arab Emirates, in China, Greece, Croatia, and Slovenia. He lectures at the Academy of Fine Arts and Design in Ljubljana.

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