The 8th symposium of sculpture in Korça, held annually, brought forth a Symposium of Architecture – the first of its kind in Albania, in a unique collaboration between architects and sculptors. This year’s 12-days event, from the 15th to the 22nd of July .
Korça, with its continuous trials in establishing and promoting sculpture as a successful form of public art, and with initiatives in regenerating public spaces through architecture, was the perfect host for the dialogue between the two disciplines. It encouraged the fruitful work between four renowned foreign and local architects and five internationally recognized sculptors.
Pair 01 – Architect, Martin Sobota & artist, Chang Shu Wei
Dutch Architect, Martin Sobota, with Back to The Roots, reimagines a pavilion that teases the eye with a mirror which places the viewer inverted with the surroundings.The structure made of light wood, seems to be grown towards the ground, while a carpet – traditional of Korça’s identity, questions the past as in relation to the contemporary. The Taiwanese artist, Chang Shu Wei’s The Recollection of Tree, pins the tree upside down, with its root at the top.
Pair 02 – Architect, Dorian Tytymce & artist, Jina Lee
The Albanian architect, Dorian Tytymçe, brought life under the Tree Pavilion – ideated as an open room within the park. The open structure, consisting of a tree and five “petals” of wood, represents the basic elements of architecture and welcomes everyone to interact – as children and passersby take a seat under its shade. It complements the sculpture by the South-Korean sculptor, Jina Lee, whose work, Ying & Yang, combines six organic shapes to create one unified form.
Pair 03 – Architect, Francesca Benedetto & artist, Takeshi Kubo
The Italian architect, Francesca Benedetto with The Living Diorama Pavilion, encloses a garden and displays different activities where architecture, nature and the life of the city coexist. The living diorama contains a living landscape within a timber structure.
Japanese sculptor Takeshi Kubo, presents his sculpture Concert of Shadow and Shape, where the form is made of shadows, lights and the air
Pair 04 – Architect, Arman Akdogan & artist, Jiang Chu
The Turkish architect, Arman Akdogan, with the Tangled Up Pavilion brings an architectural intervention in the park, breaking the green monotony. Paired with two opposite directional seat slopes facing one another, it encourages encounters and socializing.
Jiang Chu, from China, with Twisted Solidity, positioned just in front, presents a sculpture where architecture’s purpose is socializing.
– Japanese artist’s, Kei Nakamura’s work, The Origin of The Stone, derives inspiration from a farm of plankton, and represents the origin of calcareous stone.
The event was further enriched with public lectures – by the architects and sculptors, presenting their previous works and visions; workshops – where local architecture students had the opportunity to learn, research and later on document the findings in a booklet to be published in the future; and presentations where discussions were generated.This event curated by architect Jurtin Hajro, sculptor Genti Tavanxhiu, and advisor Blerina Mali – was supported by the Municipality of Korca, the Ministry of Culture, and The Embassy of the Netherlands in Albania.
Genti Tavanxhiu – Curator and organizator of Sculpture Symposium in Korça (Albania) 2017 , he was born in 1973 in Shkodra (Albania) and established his personal sculpture atelier in Italy since 1993. He is the AIESM (International Association for Monumental Sculpture Events) manager in Albania and agent in Italy as well as an ISSA (International Sculpture Symposium Alliance) member in Tongling, China. For the past two decades has been part of important national and international exhibitions, being awarded several prizes. Tavanxhiu organized, coordinated and directed eight international sculpture symposiums in Korça (Albania), one in Elbasan (Albania) and three symposiums in travertine, in Spinetoli (Italy), and for the first time on the story of Albania the organized the Architecture Symposium.
On 2018 he is part of the team that are going to present The Albania Pavilion at The International Architecture Biennale of Venice (Italy). His monumental sculptures are present in many public places and private collections in USA, Albania, Germany, Spain, Portugal, Switzerland, Italy, France, Romania, Montenegro, Cyprus, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, China, Japan, Egypt, Syria, Iran, Israel, and Tawain.
Jurtin Hajro – Curator of the 1°International Architecture Symposium in Korça (Albania) 2017. He is the founder of commonsense.studio, an architectural practice based in Tirana. Actually he is a part time a professor in the Department of Architecture at Epoka University in Tirana, Albania, where he has taught for 6 years and established and was the first director of CoRDA – Center of Research and Design in Architecture. He received his Bachelor and Master courses in Architectural Design at the Middle East Technical University – Ankara, following experiences as an assistant researcher in the same university. Among others he is the architect of Epoka Social Center, completed during his direction at CoRDA, a building that has received international attention in award nominations and academic publications. Recently, July 2017, he was the curator, together with Genti Tavanxhiu, of the first Architectural International Symposium in Albania, Modeling the Idea – Pavilion Days in Korca.
Pavilion Days in Korca 2017 is the first Architectural Symposium in Albania, bringing together architects and sculptors for a unique artistic product.
The event is supported by the Municipality of Korca, Ministry of Culture, and, Dutch Embassie in Albania.
This symposium helps the city of Korça in building a new and contemporary tradition, on the continuation of sculpture symposiums.
Korça can become a pioneer not only in Albania, but also in the region, in:- Promotion of architectural and contemporary art values, serving the citizens;
– Experimentation on the artistically and architectonic composition, on design and construction technics;After many years of cultivating and promoting sculpture as public art, and after many initiatives of regenerating public spaces via architecture, Korça makes an appropriate place, where this interdisciplinary dialogue can be situated and materialized.
This dialogue is set on a common ground, for communicating, for creating: Pavilion Days in Korça through Modeling the Idea.A certain activity, which might be repeated, can become an extremely important value and attraction point to a city and cultural center such as Korça, where the relationship of building is experienced as an important part of the urban aesthetics. The symposium aims the creation of sculpture and architecture artifacts.
In one of the public areas of the city there will be installed 5 sculptures and 4 light structures – Pavilions. Throughout this confrontation it is conveyed the sensibility which find roots at the urban aesthetics values in Korça. Beyond the realization of the artifacts, the event aims to create discussion spaces among architects, sculptors academics and students opened for public participation.
4 Architects will decide on their relation, to create their own works communicating with the sculpture at the assigned lot in the Park of the city. Each architect will receive the sketch idea of from one sculptor. The Pavilion design is expected to take root on the kind of relation with the sculpture.
Public spaces in Korça, preferably undesigned/unplanned parks, which make up the infantile setting for the authors’ assignment, and also profit from their revitalizing interventions.The idea is to establish a certain dialogue between the two artifacts and to confront the two disciplines in their relation to the public.
The activity will take place in a 10-day schedule. During these days event architects will have the support of 2 architecture students, and a technical staff, made available by the construction companies. At every end of the day, in a space where public participation is made possible, an architect and a sculptor will be part of a platform to generate discussions on themes and topics in relation to relevant activities and the everyday life of the city.
– To alter an undefined space, in a place dedicated to a distinct character. This character is free to be defined/ set by the artist and the architect, who will transmit their concrete message;
– The pavilion situated in the city park, must create a spatial dialogue by building a relation with the public, the visitor, or the user.During the 7 days of the symposium, the following activities will be developed in parallel to the project ideas:
Genti Tavanxhiu (Artist/Sculptor)
Jurtin Hajro ,Architect (Commonsense Studio )
Blerina Mali (Event Advisor)
As evident, it is a mixture of geometric and organic forms, coexisting in harmony creating beautiful contrasts of light and shadow. In historic representations on naval maps, trade winds are depicted through curvilinear signs to indicate the foreign and sinuous nature of this element symbolizing air.
Education in various countries has shaped his artistic work as a hybrid genre. The first art education in Albania and later in Italy begins in the decade of the 80s and 90s. Educating in different countries has formed my artistic performance as a hybrid genre.
About his creation he said : – Working with the solid materials -Such as stone and marble- has been a desire for every passionate artist. had discovered this dreamland in Italy.
It’s obvious that realizing any idea in solid material requires long experience. So my artistic position needed to travel through unknown countries and cultures.
As always, my philosophy of work is begun by balanced aesthetic solution. Avoiding being trivial, obvious or usual, I wanted to introduce my style, an abstract language with minimalist tendencies, sometimes using symbols and lines with immediate impact. The force engaged in their relations with the wider plans has built the characteristics of my work.
The last part of my artistic research is carried out in focus with the Greek mythology.
The theme I have chosen “Nikta & Eberos,” the night and the order in the chaos, helped me to be profounder, maybe even it has created a personal style.
The subject is the “Night” and the other “members” of this big family who live in a house in the “Tartarus”. I have presented them with all the features of their faces using the different media.
Pasithea, as wife of Hypnos,the god of sleep and dreams, may have been regarded as a goddess of hallucinations and hallucinogenic drugs. Her name is difficult to translate–the prefix pasis can be translated equally as `all`, `possessed` or `acquired` and the suffix thea as `sight`, `seeing`, `contemplation`, `goddess` or `divine`. Translating it as `Acquired-Sight` may suggest a goddess of hallucination, however in the story of the Iliad, where Hypnos acquires her from Hera in exchange for certain favours, the `Acquired-Goddess` is a perfectly apt name. The name pasithea was also given to some unidentified `magical` plant, perhaps even an hallucinogenic. Hypnos himself was often associated with poppies and opiates
“Hypnos”, Travertine h 300 cm, 2014,Mellat Park, Teheran, Iran.
Hypnos lives in a cave, whose mansion does not see the rising, nor the setting sun, nor does it see the “lightsome noon.” At the entrance were a number of poppies and other hypnotic plants. His dwelling had no door or gate so that he might not be awakened by the creaking of hinges. The river, Lethe, in the underworld, is known as the river of forgetfulness and it flows through his cave.
In my own approach to the “Hypnos” I worked in two levels as the conscious and the subconscious. I have tried to eternally fix the passing time between these two states in the stone.
As you can see, the contortions of the volumes in relation with the lines makes it somehow flexible like the ancient example of sculptures that represent him as a man with one wing in the head bending forward, ready to fly, as a transition phase an unknown dimension, profound and sometimes mysterious.
This work has made in order to have a connection, both between Iranian ancient culture and multicultural, that I wished to conclude a synergy between us.
L’artista Genti Tavanxhiu con un’opera dal titolo: “P X”, ha vinto il primo premio del Concorso internazionale di Scultura organizzato dal Museo della Pietraia dei Poeti di San Benedetto del Tronto
La scultura fa parte della nuova produzione artistica dello scultore che si caratterizza per la presenza di inserti di pietre colorate .
In questo caso, la lastra di roccia scura orizzontale, inserita nella parte mediana della pietra chiara, costituisce la linea nevralgica da cui si irradia l’energia vitale di tutta l’opera.
L’impostazione prende spunto dalla forma de ” la greca” , che in questo caso viene sviluppata e riproposta all’interno di un prezioso scrigno costituto da due strati di pietra chiara che serrano e sigillano al loro interno una lastra scura simbolo archetipo dell’infinito.
Lo sguardo dell’osservatore è prima attirato a scatti verso la cavità centrale che rappresenta il punto focale, sottolineato dalla pietra nera che taglia ed attraversa tutta l’opera, quindi ritorna verso l’esterno seguendo l’andamento obliquo degli spigoli e le linee generate dall’intarsio.
L’ispirazione di questa scultura ha origine dalla passione dell’autore per le pietre naturali, in particolare, per quelle generate dalla sedimentazione di strati diversi che hanno riempito le spaccature provocate da terremoti, dando vita nel corso dei millenni a rocce policrome.
L’artista ha ricreato una nuova roccia naturale incollando strati di pietra colorati col quale è riuscito, con la sua sapiente tecnica di lavorazione, a scolpire nuove forme che sembrano originate dalle forze della natura.
L’opera, per le sue contenute dimensioni, vuole stimolare non solo la vista ma anche il tatto, infatti le cavità le sporgenze e la diversa lavorazione delle superfici creano non solo variazioni cromatiche ma anche sensazioni tattili che possono essere percepite dalle persone con disabilità visive.
La genialità dell’artista risiede nella sua capacità di rinnovare costantemente il suo linguaggio plastico che prende spunto dagli archetipi della cultura del passato che vengono rielaborati ed interpretati in chiave moderna e, come dice Stefano Papetti: “…Nascono così delle sculture capaci di suggestionare l’osservatore e di farlo riflettere sui misteri del creato, superando d’un balzo il vortice di suggestioni effimere suggerite dalla contemporaneità
La scultura realizzata da Genti Tavanxhiu,”La greca di Smirne”, è stata ricavata da un blocco di marmo alto due metri, con un volume di quattro metri cubi e il peso di dieci tonnellate.
L’artista, stimolato dall’ambiente ricco di storia mediterranea, seguendo il suo istinto creativo riprende ed elabora il motivo de “la greca” (detta generalmente anche meandro).
Il nome, da una parte, richiama il tortuoso letto del fiume Meandro in Turchia, dall’altra, come ha sottolineato Karl Kerenyi, «è la figura di un labirinto in forma lineare».
Lo sguardo dell’osservatore è attirato e sospinto velocemente verso la cavità centrale dell’opera lasciata volutamente grezza del “labirinto” che rappresenta il punto focale della scultura ove si ferma per una pausa contemplativa, successivamente attraverso le ampie forme è condotto di nuovo verso la terra con la struttura triangolare conficcata nel suolo.
La conformazione degli spigoli esterni dell’opera, sono ben organizzati da ogni angolazione, formano un insieme che richiama alla memoria una costellazione celestiale e la sua armonia, mentre le linee che collegano questi punti “segreti” indicano i punti cardinali.
All’interno della struttura plastica, gli ampi piani geometrici attraverso l’improvviso cambiamento dell’angolo degli spigoli sviluppano una tensione dinamica che anima e caratterizza l’opera e le imprime un senso di leggerezza e di eleganza nonostante la massiccia mole del blocco di marmo.
L’originalità di questa scultura di Genti Tavanxhiu risiede nella sua capacità di far riflettere l’uomo moderno, che trascinato nel vortice effimero della tecnologia informatica si limita solo a guardare ma non riesce a percepire la propria interiorità e ciò che lo circonda.
Infatti, questa opera, contrariamente alla tendenza dell’arte contemporanea che ha abbandonato l’estetica rassicurante, stimola l’osservatore a soffermarsi col proprio sguardo su un dettaglio che potrà colpire la sua sensibilità e aprire la porta all’emozione, al ricordo, alla comprensione dei temi universali della spiritualità umana.