Лого на Софийска Градска Художествена Галерия
Анимация по време на зареждане

Pierre et Gilles Set up by Magazine 1 and the Centre for Culture and Cooperation, French Cultural Institute

09 May 2008 - 06 June 2008

The exhibition is going to present for the first time to the Bulgarian audience original works by the world famous French tandem Pierre and Gilles.

The style of the two artists has long become a symbol of artistic success. They have been working together since 1976 so far having created more than 800 artistic pieces. Their works combine photography and painting and each artist has his own domain in the process – Pierre takes care of the filming while Gilles is in charge of the setting and the painting on the photos.

Partners at work and in life, Pierre and Gilles (Pierre Commoy and Gilles Blanchard) impose their own specific iconography inspired by the symbols of pop-culture, religion, the burlesque, magic and eroticism. Their works are dominated by portraits and self-portraits which they create with a sense of provocation, irony, tenderness or determination. “We tend to idealize the people we make portraits of. Apart from our adoration though you can sense their own energy. We show the world the way it is but through the eye of a poet.”

Among the world stars having sat for a portrait are Catherine Deneuve, Naomi Campbell, Madonna, Marilyn Manson, Jean Paul Gautier, Silvie Vartan, Boy George, Nina Hagen, Kylie Minogue, David Bowie and many others.

The Pierre et Gilles exhibition in Sofia Art Gallery includes 50 works by the legendary artists created in the period between 1978-2008. Among them are the two Silvie Vartan portraits created particularly for the exhibition in Sofia.
Pierre and Gilles themselves are going to be present at the opening and that will be their first visit to a country from South Eastern Europe.

A special catalogue has been issued for the exhibition.

BAZA Award Exhibition of the Nominees Bora Petkova, Vasilena Gankovska, Vikenti Komitski, Violeta Tanova, Lazar Lyutakov, Rada Boukova

07 May 2008 - 06 June 2008

For the first time in Bulgaria the Institute of Contemporary Art – Sofia jointly with Foundation for a Civil Society, NYC and
Young Visual Artists Awards presents the prestigious BAZA Award for young artist in the field of contemporary art. 

The Award comprises a travel fellowship, a six-week residency at the International Studio and Curatorial Program (ISCP), New York City, in October 2008 – May 2009 and a solo exhibition at the ICA gallery in Sofia.

The purpose of the Award is to encourage young artists with the opportunities for schooling, exploration and career. The Award creates a positive context for young modern art and an art-friendly milieu. 

The annual Young Visual Artist Award was established in 1990 in the Czech Republic by Wendy Luers, founder and President of the US Foundation for a Civil Society (FCS). Today the Award exists in ten European countries and is one of the prestigious measures of outstanding professional performance. The affiliated states are the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Croatia, Kosovo, Serbia, Macedonia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Slovenia, Albania, to mention but some. The Young Visual Artists Awards international network YVAA (http://www.yvaa.net) has evolved from the active information exchange among the countries.

The initiative and organization of the award procedure and the exhibitions are in the hands of the Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA) – Sofia (http://ica.cult.bg), which consequently was selected to organize the competition.

The competition is open to artists aged 35 and younger and working in all the media of modern art. Participation is free or on a proposition from invited institutions that are active in the domain of modern art.

The procedure: The jury (Boriana Dragoeva, Kiril Prashkov, Maria Vassileva, Iara Bubnova and Stanislav Pamoukchiev) nominated six artists on the basis of documentation that they have submitted. These finalists will have their works displayed at a general exhibition in the Sofia Art Gallery. The winner will be announced on the opening of the exhibition.

The Sofia Art Gallery is a partner in the project.

The winner is Rada Boukova

Ivan Georgiev - Rembrandt 1938-1994 retrospective exhibition

04 April 2008 - 28 April 2008

Ivan Georgiev has never exhibited his works at an exhibition nor has he sold pictures. Once he presented his works (probably for the 1966 General Art Exhibition) and got snubbed, he vowed he would never again submit his pictures to be judged by a panel of authorities. He chose to go underground and to benefit from his freedom in endless poverty.

Initially he painted portraits, landscapes and still-lives. From the late 1970s onwards by and by he moved away from the visible world. Ivan Georgiev’s abstract painting is unique in Bulgarian art of the 1970s and 80s. Though his painting continues to be obscure, it instills life into what might be called wasteland. Abstract expressionism is one of these lands.

Though Ivan Georgiev’s style of painting varies all the time, it is easy to recognize it for the forcefulness it carries despite the plethora of styles and the range of feelings that fluctuate from joy and ecstasy to gloom and sarcasm. Shining or flickering and overloaded with explosive power, his painting visualizes the idea of existence as a continuous alternation of light and dark.

The retrospective exhibition is dedicated to Ivan Georgiev’s 70th birthday and displays some 200 works that have never been displayed. These have been selected from the artist’s 600 or so pictures from privately owned collections. The displayed works trace the artist’s creative path from the academic sketches to the abstract paintings that he produced during the last year of his life.

Curator: Krassimir Iliev
- - -
Ivan Hristov Georgiev was born in Sofia on 11 September 1938. In 1958 he graduated from the Art School in Sofia. In 1961 he enrolled at the National Art Academy where he was tutored in painting by Prof. Panayot Panayotov. In 1963 he was awarded the prize of the Central Council of Trade Unions for his poster “Never”. In 1965 he was awarded for his study at a student competitive exhibition at the Art Academy. He graduated from the Art Academy in 1966. He died on 30 July 1994 in Sofia.
Ivan Georgiev’s pictures were displayed posthumously at an exhibition that Maximilian Kirov arranged in 1995 in the Vitosha Gallery. There followed four other exhibitions: in December 1997-January 1998 in the Vitosha Gallery; in 2003 in the Artamontsev Gallery in Sofia and in the Bulart Gallery in Varna; and in 2005 in the Art Efir Gallery in Sofia.
It is only four works painted by Ivan Georgiev that are possessed by a Government-owned gallery. These are a donation made by the artist’s sister Vyara Georgieva to the Sofia City Art Gallery in 2003.


12 March 2008 - 30 March 2008

An exhibition of Ivailo Petrov marking his 85th birthday anniversary

This exhibition is part of the celebration of Ivailo Petrov’s 85th birthday anniversary and presents our renowned writer from a new perspective. Known to the wide audience for his literary work and acknowledged as one of the greatest contemporary Bulgarian writers, Ivailo Petrov was also a gifted painter. Painting, though left in the shadow of his literary prominence, had always accompanied the development of his versatile personality and expressed the spontaneous nature of his talent. The mastered drawing line, the subtle sense for the typical, the resonant colour , the good-humoured cartoon turn his paintings into a cheerful revelation, into a warm and spiritual confession.
The exhibition in Sofia Art Gallery includes over 60 works of Ivailo Petrov – paintings, drawings and small plastic pieces. The works belong to private collections and most of them have not been displayed so far.

Along with the exhibition opening there will be a presentation of the book Before and After published by Literaturen Forum, which includes autobiographical texts by Ivailo Petrov as well as reminiscences of his life.

The newly instituted award for national literature to the name of Ivailo Petrov will be given for the first time.

The real name of the writer born on 19th January, 1923 in the village of Gyuchedyoluk (now Bdinci), district of Varna, was Prodan Petrov Kyuchukov. He finished secondary school in the town of Dobrich. After 1947 he spent a few semesters studying law at Sofia University. Then he studied for two years at the Art Academy under Iliya Beshkov.

He worked for Radio Sofia, Bulgarski Pisatel Publishing House, Plamuk Magazine, Literaturen Front Newspaper. His first collection of stories was Baptism (1953). In 1961 his novel Ground Swell came out. Among his other works are Wolf Hunt, Confused Notes, Before I Was Born and After. His works have been translated into Belorussian, Chinese, Mongolian, German, Russian, Japanese, Rumanian, French, Polish, Slovenian. He won several awards among which the Grand Prize for overall contribution to Bulgarian literary culture Hr. G. Danov in 2002, the Golden Age Prize for contribution to Bulgarian culture, the St. Kliment Ohridski Sofia University Grand Prize for literature and others. Ivailo Petrov died in 2005.

MY JAZZ ICONS Maria Zafirkova Dimitar Traychev Hristo Alexiev

07 March 2008 - 30 March 2008

The project is dedicated to the great names of world jazz. Among the painted are Mahalia Jackson, Count Basie, Elvin Jones, Dinah Washington, Ella Fitzgerald, Nina Simone, Sara Vaughan and others.

The three artists use elements of the classical drawing, the cartoon and the poster, relying on the principles fundamental of contemporary graphic design. The authors themselves are jazz fans who work on the representation of different musical products.

Maria Zafirkova (b. 1951) is known to be a delicate painter and an experimenter in the field of materials. Her portraits are marked by a graphic subtlety and moderate lyricism. Dimitur Traichev (b. 1952) is not only a very good graphic designer, master of posters and painter but also a tempted conceptualist. In his excessively expressive portraits he combines “the images of his sound iconostasis”. We know Hristo Alexiev (b. 1950) from his numerous theatrical posters and character sketches. In the portraits of famous musicians he shows his specific rendering of each separate personage.

The exhibition My Jazz Icons is dedicated to one discovery – the jazz singer Radka Toneff (1952-1982). She built up her musical career in Oslo and during her short biography of an artist she managed to win recognition as one of the most famous and legendary names on the contemporary jazz stage. Each of the three artists presents a portrait of the singer.

Vaska Emanouilova Gallery presents Exhibition in Progress. You are invited to come again! Solo Exhibition by Bora Petkova

07 February 2008 - 09 March 2008

The new exhibition season in Vaska Emanouilova Gallery starts with the inauguration of the on-going project Sculpture within which different authors working in that field are going to present their works. The aim of the project is to create an interest and to develop a better understanding of contemporary sculpture and the problems it poses. The initiative is also provoked by the desire to draw the public attention to the development of sculpture in Bulgaria. The most suitable place for this turns out to be the gallery possessing museum collection with works of the eminent Bulgarian sculptor Vaska Emanouilova. 

The first author chosen within the framework of the project is Bora Petkova (b. 1979). Her offbeat and eccentric approach to the sculpture object is known to the viewers from her participation in a number of exhibitions connected to the National Contest for Young Artists, Critics and Curators with the St. St. Cyril and Methodius International Foundation as well as from the exhibitions presenting the selections to the 2007 M-Tel Awards for Contemporary Bulgarian Art and Gaudenz B. Ruf Awards for New Bulgarian Art.

Bora Petkova’s exhibition in Vaska Emanouilova Gallery – Exhibition in Progress. You are invited to come again! represents the process of forming a sculpture object within the exhibition space. The exhibition period itself is divided into four separate stages during which the object is in different phases of completion (from February 7th to February 18th, from February 18th to February 25th, from February 25th to March 3rd and from March 3rd to March 9th ). Each week the artist is going to work on the sculpture gradually adapting it to the exhibition space until the last week when it is going to be presented as a complete sculpture object. The presenting of the exhibition as a working process poses a few questions like how the artist works with the object in real space, what the meaning of sculpture is, how we as viewers perceive and communicate with the sculpture objects as well as what the boundaries and the frames of the exhibition space are.

Snejana Simeonova SAILBOATS

05 February 2008 - 02 March 2008

The Sailboats series was created in the last two years. It is a logical sequel to the Nets and Pairs series where shapes rise and extend in space, allowing the latter to flow into them. As in Nets and Pairs, shapes in Sailboats extend outward, as though a centrifugal force were acting. 

Made of various materials, namely iron, Depron foam, polyester resin, wood, paper pulp, and chaff, the eleven sculptures presented in the Sofia Art Gallery convey both hope and despair, the balance between the two shifting with each sculpture. 

The exhibition’s focal point is a sculpture featuring five human figures. The “dismembered” clothes levitate the bodies floating between the heavenly and the earthly. 

Metaphors of the journey, Snejana Simeonova’s Sailboats are drifting between the possibility and impossibility of change, anchored in fear, gently driven by longing. 

The compositions were created in the artist’s atelier in the village of Illindentsi, a place that has become a centre of sculpture in the last few years. The magic of the village has been a major influence on Snejana Simeonova’s art.

Snejana Simeonova majored in sculpture at the National Academy of Fine Arts, Sofia. She graduated from it in 1976. Her work features a wide range of rendering styles, varying between monumental sculpture and small sculpture. She regularly participates in national sculpture exhibitions, as well as in international ones – she has presented her works in Latvia, Germany, Hungary, the Republic of South Africa, Japan, Spain, Belgium, Israel, and Turkey. Her works are characterized by easiness mixed with hidden tension, a blend of exquisiteness and passionate energy.

40 YEARS VIDEO ART IN GERMANY Sofia Art Gallery and Goethe-Institut Bulgaria

31 January 2008 - 02 March 2008

All electronic information media have short life. The museums and collections all over the world face this problem. The total loss of digital data is part of a horror scenario. This problem has been more and more clearly recognized, since in the meantime the video record becomes the all too often used artistic means of expression. 

The German Federal Cultural Foundation’s initiative, “40 Years of Video Art in Germany – Digital Heritage” has set the objective to save, protect and transmit the cultural heritage of video art that has become one of the most fascinating forms of art of the twentieth century. Such comprehensive project is implemented for the first time in Germany involving five museums in Karlsruhe, Dusseldorf, Bremen, Munich and Leipzig. 

For two years original records have been collected, copies have been compared and their artistic merits have been estimated in order to record all formats in the best possible digital method. An option has been found and for the first time electronic information has been restored from extremely valuable historical video tapes. Part of the outcomes of this research is being presented with the itinerant exhibition “40 Years of Video Art in Germany” offering the opportunity to make ourselves familiar with the history of this form of creative work. 

A special hanging-committee has selected 59 works, which have not only a historical value, but are also of present interest. They have been created in the period between 1963 and 2005. Among the authors we see the names of both legendary artists of the sixties and of emblematic figures of the following decades, as well as the newest reinforcements on the German artistic stage. Against the background stand out artists like Jan Dibets, Otto Pignet, Joseph Beuys, Rebecca Horn, Marcel Odenbach, Rosemary Troeckel, Christian Jankowski, etc. 


25 January 2008 - 30 March 2008

Sofia Art Gallery presents its most recent acquisitions in the field of Painting, Graphics, Sculpture and Contemporary Art and Photography gained in the last years as purchases or donations. What is going to be displayed are works representing different periods of Bulgarian art by various generations of artists.

Due to the financial support of Sofia Municipality in 2007 the gallery managed to purchase the first works since 1991 but its main source of filling up the museum stock are still the donations of the authors themselves, their heirs and collectors.

The exhibition reflects the logic of setting up a museum collection and the principles of selecting the works of art. The collection follows chronologically the history of art showing the different trends in its development and putting an emphasis on specific authors, periods or particular exhibitions and events of extreme significance.

Among the newly acquired pieces of art there are some works by authors with an overall contribution to the development of Bulgarian art like Zlatyu Boyadzhiev, Peter Dochev, Vesselin Staikov, Boris Denev, Yoan Leviev, Dimitur Kirov, Olga Vulnarova, Genko Genkov, Lyuben Dimanov, Roumen Gasharov. The inclusion of works by Stanislav Pamukchiev, Bozhidar Boyadzhiev, Krassimir Dobrev and Vencislav Zankov is a step towards filling up an almost non researched stage in the development of contemporary painting and plastic art which began in the late 80ies. What is also represented is the period which gave rise to contemporary art in Bulgaria with works like Lyuben Kostov’s moving Time machine which took part in the Third Istanbul biennale in 1992. Since the gallery functions as a certain museum of Sofia a focal point in the selection are works dedicated to the city we live in like Nadezhda Oleg Lyahova’s Sofia Lions and Kiril Prashkov’s Responsible Painting. This selection is also grounded in the increased interest of contemporary artists in the urban topic. Alla Georgieva’s emblematic cycle Alla’s Secret is representative for the development of artistic feminism in Bulgaria in the 90ies. The museum collection also includes works by the young authors Svetozara Alexandrova and Samuil Stoyanov who in the recent years have been among the most actively working artists in the field of contemporary art.


20 December 2007 - 20 January 2008

Under the aegis of His Excellency Mr Willem van Ee, Ambassador of the Kingdom of the Netherlands to Bulgaria 
and Mr Boiko Borisov, Mayor of Sofia

This exhibition offers for the first time a rich overview of the period between 1890-1990 – an epoch of dynamic development which can justly be defined as a “Golden Age” for Dutch graphic design. The unique artistic tradition, the numerous brilliant creative personalities, the extraordinary tolerance and responsiveness of both customers and viewers to the representation of innovation and non-standard thinking have all formed throughout those years a provoking, vital and temporally adequate aesthetics. It is namely that culture of tolerance and freedom of thought that have created in Holland favourable grounds for experimenting and establishing new forms of graphic communication which have left a permanent mark on graphic design up to now. 

This exhibition shows over 200 works highlighting the utmost achievements of Dutch graphic design. One can find represented all styles characteristic of the epoch like Art Nouveau, De Stijl, Expressionism, Dutch Constructivism and Post-War Rationalism. There will be works on display by Jan Toorop, Bart van der Leck, Piet Zwart, Theo van Doesburg, Paul Schuitema, Willem Sandberg, Jan Bons, Jan van Toorn and others whose unique graphic legacy is the source of inspiration for the new generation of graphic designers. 

Starting its journey from Bucharest and Sofia, in the course of one year the exhibition will be presented in most of the biggest European cities as well as in America. Each of the displays is going to be accompanied by an additional programme including lectures, workshops and other projects addressed to the youth and student audience and aimed at the broad exchange of creative experience among the European countries.

This exhibition is a project of Premsela, Dutch Platform for Design and Fashion and De Beyerd, Museum for Graphic Design. The exhibition is set up by Cees W. de Jong and Alston W. Purvis, authors of the book Dutch Graphic Design. An Epoch of Innovation. The exhibition design is contributed by the Dutch design company COMA. The exhibition has been made possible with the financial support of the Dutch Culture Programme, the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the DutchMinistry of Education, Culture and Science.

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