Curatorial exhibition of Mima Chovancova
Curatorial work with Mima Chovanchova
By Marth von Loeben
Mima was presented to us as an abstract painter, whose latest work had taken a more figurative and critical tone because of an inner urge to render in art her experience as a Slovakian woman living in the UK.
Her series of medallions (six different colleges that represented the stereotypes that she had encountered in the previous nine years) showed big potential in growth, critical eye and artistic ability, which were all crucial for her access in the curatorial program of RAW.
An intense period of experimentation, research, and personal growth followed after the first phase of getting acquainted and laying down the focal points of the coming period.
In these two months, I and Mima collaborated to develop new work and set up a solo exhibition. We had a weekly meeting through Skype (due to the fact that we were not able to meet in person) and we would keep in touch regarding various updates by email. These included visual experiments (from her part), interesting articles and suggestions serving as research on the subject (from my part), and general feedback and bullet points after each meeting. This method served us to explore Mima’s latest interest about
Moravian fairytales and historical death rituals in the Slovakian region and to find a specific narrative in her new line of work. I encouraged to tap in her own personal experience to find an approach to the subject that would fuel her need to produce and research: this would drive her to combine her visual practice with a more accomplished in-depth view on the theme we were exploring.
This very close relationship (between the two of us and between her and the narrative we were studied) lead to a very productive period and to wonderful results, which not only were showing huge progress but also delivered a lovely exhibition which we built together.
(The documentation of the exhibition is available on the website of RAW)
The interesting qualities that she presented in her work at the beginning of the screening period were given a chance to flourish and prosper, the results of which were not only evident in the quality of her exhibition, but also in what she gained from the curatorial approach.
These two months showed her which were her strengths, her visual abilities, and how to approach a serious topic both as research and possibilities in experiments.
Not only she found out that it could be done, but that it delivers exceptional results and enriches the artist.