03 Jul “Don’t avoid what is easy” – Alumna Anastasia showcases EYP-inspired art
Media teams at EYP events capture scenes and precious memories, but not just for participants to put them on their timelines or social media feeds. Participants building teams and getting to know each other, EYPers reaching out to others and learning about their cultures… These scenes can inspire art, and they have—Anastasia Lemberg-Lvova took inspiration for her latest exhibition from the international conference, or International Session, in Yerevan, 2019. The exhibition will take place on August 14th, 2020, at the Freedom Gallery (Vabaduse Galerii), Tallinn.
Words from the artist herself:
“I have faith in social engagement through aesthetics and the infinite possibilities of art. The individual is perpetually discouraged from believing they have any impact or value. Women are reduced to their weight when it comes to self-worth, men to the size of their income, the consumer is taught they have no power over impulses and a business is required to squeeze the last drop of profit with no consideration for anyone’s wellbeing.
This does not make for a very happy life.
With a background in Fine Arts, design and social activism, I want my work to question the perceptions formed around an individual’s worth and potential. I want to paint, build, design and bring to life the questions that will allow the viewer to re-evaluate damaging beliefs about themselves and at least imagine a more positive alternative.
I believe that doing so will allow for a considerably happier one.”
What does the EYP-inspired exhibition look like?
Anastasia Lemberg-Lvova: The exhibition will include several elements.
First, there’ll be a series of seven oil paintings of EYPers, who took part in the project around the time of the International Session that took place in Yerevan, 2019. The paintings will include a portrait of each participant and an interpretation of the wish for improving Europe that they expressed.
Second, there will be interactive elements in the form of performances before the exhibition and a few workshops during the exhibition.
Third and finally, video interviews with some participants and the Harbour for Cultures cards in multiple languages will be shown. On those cards, 52 Europeans have expressed their wish for improving Europe. The participants are from the following countries: Armenia, Austria, Belarus, Belgium, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Italy, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Russia, Serbia, Slovenia, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine.
Why did you do this exhibition on the International Session in Yerevan specifically?
Anastasia Lemberg-Lvova: The exhibition came together after combining multiple projects and International Session Yerevan was one of them. I met with Juliana Carbi at the Trieste Contemporanea gallery in 2018 and learned about the project called Harbour for Cultures. The project itself had many aspects that I saw as applicable to EYP and since at that time I had already been accepted as Editor to the session, I decided to carry out my part at the event. Harbour for Cultures looked at the mostly unused old port of Trieste (Porto Vecchio) as a case study and a metaphor for inciting creative thinking in the inhabitants of the city. It started by asking Triestins to come up with 5 wishes related to Porto Vecchio and its territory. After all, it’s their city and up to them to shape it. I decided to enlarge the scope and ask young people at the session what they wanted from their home – Europe.
How does EYP inspire you? Are there other art projects you have made involving EYP activities or EYP people?
I have basically spent 10 years living and breathing EYP and dedicated some years of my life running two national organisations. The organisation has given me a lot and many people I consider closest friends I have met on my EYP journey. As a socially engaged artist and a portraitist, I am inspired by people close to me and those happen to be EYPers.
Explain to us a bit the reasoning behind the art. How come you went for this style?
I studied Fine Arts along with International Relations at the University of Tartu and got acquainted with Social Design at the Eindhoven Design Academy. My style has formed as a mix of different influences on that academic journey.