Browarna Gallery, Podrzeczna 17 Street, Łowicz, Poland
Info Zofia Bojańczyk e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org |http://galeriabrowarna.blogspot.com/
The Browarna Gallery announces the opening of the exhibition of Belarusian artist Rufina Bazlova who by cross-embroidered fabric presents mass-demonstrations that took place in Belarus in 2020 and comments the political situation of her country. The exhibition will be open for public till September 19th.
Rufina Bazlova was born in 1990 in Grodno, on the border of Belarus with Poland and Lithuania. She was not in the country during last year’s protests: when she was 18, she went to Plzeň to study graphics, illustration and sculpture. Afterwards, she moved to Prague, where she graduated in stage design and puppetry and lives in the Czech capital city to this day. She was up to date with the situation in Belarus thanks to the Telegram app used by censored Belarusian journalists and bloggers. As she was moved by the solidarity and mobilisation of her fellow countrymen, as well as by the brutality of the authorities, she began to post her digital embroidery on Instagram, reaching the sensitivity of her peers: the generation of 20 and 30-year-olds, who so far had shown no interest in the political situation of the country, whereas if an exchange of information or covenant took place, it was mainly through social media.
Bazlova derives her inspiration from Belarusian folk art, which for years was mainly used to promote the country in colorful tourist folders, yet today it can help build the identity of young Belarusians by referring to the common denominator – old customs and traditions. For years, folk ornamentation was the code used to describe the world – says Bazlova in an interview for Polish daily newspaper Gazeta Wyborcza – Women who could not write and read, used this language to communicate. In turn, during the war, embroidering was a ritual to divert dark forces. For the artist, dark forces lie with the spectres of oppression and totalitarian violence. The colors she uses – white and red – refer to the flag of the Belarusian People’s Republic, under which the opposition is being united. What is worthwhile to add is that this flag is forbidden. It was removed from the Parliament building in 1995 and cut into pieces at the behest of Lukashenka. The title of the series – Vyzyvanka –, which contains the works presented at the exhibition Nici z demokracji/No thread to follow at the Browarna Gallery, is a word play between wyszywat (English: embroider) and wyżywat (English: experience).
The cross-embroidered, 7-meter long white and red fabric by Bazlova is the heart of the exhibition in the Browarna Gallery. It presents the chronicle of demonstrations that took place in Minsk, Grodno, Kobryn, Soligorsk, Pinsk, Baranavichy, Gomel, Mogilev and many other Belarusian cities. It is also a story about the boldness, solidarity and determination of Belarusians in their fight against the communist regime.
The Browarna Gallery is a private space where exhibitions and concerts are organized. It is located in former Evangelic church which was bought and renovated by the owner, Mr. Andrzej Biernacki.