An experimental video poetry collection consisting of six video poems made by Slovenian artist Valerie Wolf Gang while spending a year in Portugal.
"An Artist Abroad" is a video poetry anthology by artist Valerie Wolf Gang. It is a project that started in August 2014 when Valerie moved to Portugal for one year to explore and research the influence of temporary change of residence, country and culture on artistic production and creativity. Beside her research she was creating poetical videos, which give the public insight into her personal creative evolution.
The anthology contains six video poems: 'Mivka/Sand/Areia', 'Talking Stones', 'Plastic Rhythm', 'Bread of Life', 'A Message to Humanity' and 'Tearing it Down'. They were created systematically from the first day of Valerie's stay in Portugal and they show the process of her integration into a new environment. This includes language confusion, feeling the sand structure, meeting new materials, people, and landscapes, and finding deeper emotional transitions, in combination with experimental video styles and techniques. The videos are constructed as experimental poetical art films in which Valerie uses principles analogous to those of painting. She sees the video production and editing, the sound design and the poetry writing as part of the same process of re-creating different atmospheres and merging different realities.
Her work reflects social conflicts arising from political regulations and constraints, especially when traveling or working abroad. When moving in space and time she animates the dead surroundings with her camera as suggested in the writings about speed by the contemporary philosopher Paul Virilo. Her works underscores the contrasts between nature and city, happiness and sadness, authority and freedom.
The project was presented as a solo exhibition at Centro de Artes, Museu António Duarte in Caldas da Rainha, Portugal and in Washington Square Park in New York City. “An Artist Abroad” was integrated in a web page, and it was possible for the viewer to access every poem through the scan of QR codes which were displayed in the gallery. Every visitor could scan the codes and play the desired poem on their tablets or smart phones. The viewers thus became the curators, being able to decide which video to play, when and where to play it. The videos acquired an interactive dimension, which symbolically relates to Valerie’s concept of merging different realities and creating collaborative performances with people she met on her journey.
Soon after the videos were included in different festivals and received several international awards and nominations.
Find out more about Valerie Wolf Gang's work on her artist website.
Valerie Wolf Gang (1990) is a multimedia artist who has graduated from the Ljubljana High School of Design and Photography (Ljubljana, Slovenia). She obtained a BA in Digital Art and Practice with an emphasis in video art and an MA in Media Art and Practice from the School of Arts at the University of Nova Gorica (Nova Gorica, Slovenia). She works as a freelance video artist, a status granted by the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Slovenia, and is actively involved in different forms of artistic production, video and film projects, exhibitions and artistic residencies.