Benjamin Beker was the winner of ArtSway Open 08. For his exhibition at ArtSway, Beker will exhibit his War and Liberation Monuments and Interiors of Power series. These two bodies of work were attempts to âde-historicise' various Serbian monuments and interiors, removing them from their usual context.
Beker will also exhibit a new series of work, based on research into the architecture and politics of building projects constructed on dried marshland in New Belgrade, in the former Yugoslavia, in the 1950s and 1960s - inspired by original plans, drawings and images for a proposed âmodernist city'.
In the planning and construction of New Belgrade modernist concepts of the functional city were appropriated, and primarily Le Corbusier's ideas of a city as an idealised image of a new social model. It was planned primarily for representative government buildings but has also become home to huge housing estates. These consist of parallel linear buildings, simply referred to as âthe blocks' and were built for tens of thousands of people.
The final series of images will feature digitally manipulated photographs the artist took whilst in Serbia; the artist will isolate them and place them in a fictional context, stripping them of their environment. They will be a mixture of fact and fiction dark socialist housing estates will be transformed into toy-like objects. Beker is interested in the way that political events and Post-Communist Capitalism has affected the urban planning of cities in the former Eastern Bloc.
ArtSway's annual Open exhibition usually attracts an entry of 350 artists. For Open 08, 30 artists were selected for exhibition, with Benjamin Beker being awarded the prize of a solo exhibition at ArtSway. The selectors for Open 08 were: Camilla Brown of The Photographers' Gallery, ArtSway Director Mark Segal, ArtSway Curator Peter Bonnell and Open 07 winner Laura Green.
Exhibition Associated Events:
Private View and Gallery Talk: Benjamin Beker in Conversation with Peter Bonnell
Saturday 5 September 2009 at 3pm
ArtSway Open 08 winner Benjamin Beker will discuss his recent research trips to Serbia and his new body of photographic work examining housing developments in Communist era Belgrade.
FREE: Booking Essential.
Saturday 19 September 2009 at 2pm
Join ArtSway Curator Peter Bonnell for an informal tour and discussion of Benjamin Beker's exhibition.
FREE: All Welcome.
Friday 9 October 2009, 10am - 4pm
Ten half-hour slots for artists from all backgrounds for critiques, portfolio reviews and career advice from ArtSway Director Mark Segal and Curator Peter Bonnell.
COST: £5 per person. Booking Essential.
Art in Context: Yugoslavia and Present-day Serbia
A lecture at ArtSway by Dr Marko Attila Hoare, Senior Research Fellow at Kingston University, that will examine the history of Communist era Yugoslavia in relation to the modern state of Serbia.
*The date of this lecture is to be confirmed. Please contact the gallery for details. Booking essential*
To book a place on any of the above events please contact Jack Lewis on 01590 682260 (ext.6) or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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