ASTANA – More than 40 artists and media art leaders from Kazakhstan and Russia are slated to participate July 4-6 in the Astana Art Fest, organised with the support of the Akimat (city administration), Astana’s Sun Media and Almaty’s Funk agencies. For three days, Nurzhol Boulevard in the centre of the capital will become the space in which modern art objects meet an audience.
The programme for the open air festival includes contemporary art installations, video, sound and street art, DJ sets, street theatre, clowning, pantomime and an interactive performance. The best design objects and works are expected to be displayed at the Milan Furniture Fair and London Design Festival.
For organisers and young artists, the event is an opportunity to make connections with new people, share constructive ideas in the company of friends and professionals and use human energy for artistry and development.
“The main idea of the event is human energy,” said festival curator and Russian Union of Artists member Yana Malinovskaya in a recent interview with The Astana Times. “An urban art festival is like a camp of modern nomads who are open to the sun, wind, craftship, communication and joy. We will generate creative energy and direct it to produce joint ideas, solutions and projects in one space and in a short time.”
“We will speak the language of art, design, architecture and new technologies that we are the nomads and our task is to realise that we are an important but not the most important part of this world,” she continued. “And how can we define the volume, quality and value of our energy to the other part of the world? The festival can be one of the answers to this question.”
A number of new areas will be introduced this year including digital art, media poetry and art sessions. Several educational programmes are also expected to be presented as part of the festival.
“We plan to organise an ‘Art in Public Space’ forum. We invite experts on culture and science and participants of the festival to take part in our discussion platform. The main idea of the forum is the artist in the city. What can the artist do for the city? Why is art necessary in the city and what should residents do with art? How does the artist feel in the city and how do the artists interact? Participants also can talk about their projects. I plan to talk about public art and its concept,” said Malinovskaya.
A chief curator will lead a press tour twice a day for media and guests. The visitors will have the opportunity to meet with the artists, architects and designers, ask questions and talk with curators in each field.
“There are schedules to organise DJ sessions of musicians from Italy, Germany and Switzerland and local musicians. Our eminent Kazakh artists such as Almagul Menlibayeva, Yelena and Victor Vorobyevs and ZITABL will take part in the event together with young artists. We will show high quality and conceptual things,” she said.
Moscow-based artists and curator Elena Demidova will present a laboratory of digital poetry. She is an author who displays a wide range of approaches to poetry using computers, sound and video.
“Media poetry is a completely unusual and interesting experience for our country. Demidova and sound artist, composer and musician Oleg Makarov will deliver lectures and make joint performances with any visitor. We’ll also produce a digital art performance. Renowned artists and teachers at Rodchenko School of Photography and New Media Alexei Shulgin and Aristarkh Chernyshev intend to present an electroboutique digital installation. This year we have invited various professionals, as we want to study the subjects of discussion more deeply and give impetus to the cultural development of the city,” said Malinovskaya.