ROactiv, an online project dedicated to the national and international promotion of Romanian artists, will be launched by Art Encounters Foundation Timișoara on 15 January 2022, on Romania’s National Culture Day.

The project will run until 31 January and will include a series of video interviews. Every interview will be dedicated to a Romanian artist or international personality that has good insight into the Romanian cultural context.

Acting like an art “diet” that will develop over the course of the project, in which every art “dose” will lead us closer to a nuanced understanding of contemporary Romanian culture and history, the episodes will subsequently constitute an archive that will reflect the diversity and complexity of Romanian artistic production.

Among the participants there will be Ciprian Mureșan, whose works have been exhibited at Centre Pompidou Paris, at the Venice Biennale and at the Tate Modern Museum in London, Justin O’Shaughnessy, artist and cultural worker based in England, who has collaborated with multiple prestigious institutions (Tate Modern, Serpentine Gallery, Frieze Art Fair), Diana Marincu, curator, art critic and artistic director of Art Encounters Foundation, artists Csilla Bartus, Ole Blank, Floriama Cândea, Eduard Constantin, Norbert Filep, Lucia Ghegu, Alexandra Mereuți, Lucía Simón Medina.

This cultural project has been organised with the support of the Romanian Ministry of Culture.

Partners: Fabrica de Pensule Federation, Timișoara Faculty of Art and Design, Interart Triade Foundation

Graphic design: Bogdan Matei

Interview with Lucia Ghegu

“This gives me the confidence that, no matter what happens, art will continue to exist, it is a hope in humanity, in something that is beyond us.”

Interview with Edi Constantin

“I’m not sure if art can change mentalities, but I think it can raise questions and can make people pay more attention and be more open to the world around them.”

Interview with Lucía Simón Medina

“The great possibility of art is to comment on the present, looking to the past and to the future.”

Interview with Floriama Cândea

“I don’t think I would change anything, I believe that everything is part of a process of continuous learning, I think that I would need to have regrets in order to want to change something.”

Interview with Justin O’Shaughnessy

“My personal taste around the work isn’t important, rather I try and look at how the works are situated within the location and within the wider project. So the hanging itself is really enjoyable, working with the curators to place the works in relation to one another and start seeing those threads that exist between the works and seeing the curatorial mission being played out through the placement of works. So I really enjoy that bit.”

Interview with Norbert Filep

“The direct contact of the pencil and the paper, the instantaneous act of drawing a line, a shape, or […] the physical contact, of scratching and leaving a mark on the respective paper or mount, these are all quite attractive and exciting to me. “

Interview with Csilla Bartus

“Art offers perspectives, diversity, it helps me reach the depth of things.”

Interview with Alexandra Mereuți

“I would like to somehow manage to be culturally active, to participate in cultural projects and to express my opinions within the public space through my cultural activity, without having to think in terms of a career. […] To me it is quite important to keep a sort of responsibility to the public space.”

Interview with Diana Marincu

“I think that one of the most valuable things I have learned during the diverse experiences that I have had is related to the way in which you carry out a project, beyond a personal ambition. […] It is something connected to the process, and I think that this is the most valuable lesson, how to be part of a creative or work process that is also pleasant.”

Interview with Ole Blank

“The history of art is something that’s really important to me, and I found myself in many cases sitting in front of a book, or a document, a text, or even in front my screen, watching artworks that had been made 50 years ago or even 80 years ago before I got born, but it’s really touching, it still has this quality of touching, or is something that is a very interesting document in terms of time. It’s interesting or it really touches me to find out about somebody who thought about this or that 80 years ago, and when I consider my own work I also have this wish that it is something that could communicate into a possible future, maybe find somebody in 50 years or 60 years, I don’t know how many years, and touches that specific person.”

Interview with Ciprian Mureșan

“The artist should find his role, because, if it is predefined by someone else, by power, by the art market or by the political regime, the artist can feel that his freedom is being threatened. So I think the artist should find, or maybe this is one of the purposes, to find your own role in society, not necessarily to create art.”

Between 15 and 31 January, ROactiv brought audiences closer to Romanian contemporary art, while revealing behind-the-scenes elements from large-scale projects and interesting details about complex exhibitions: