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Exhibitions 2023

Svilen Stefanov Exhibition At ONE gallery Svilen Stefanov shows paintings made in the last two years. They are supported by a series of twelve drawings, also appearing in an exhibition space for the first time. Thus, a special selection is highlighted in front of us, which can also be accepted as an up-to-date synthesis of the themes and the author's visual signature. After a period of interest in the field of neo-conceptualism, Svilen Stefanov turned to painting in the mid-1990s. He purposefully began creating his own form of conceptual painting, in which he applied classic painting tools in a contemplative way. A formally painterly approach, but through the understanding that contemporary art is above all a way of thinking that can manifest itself through the specifics of any objectifying means. Stefanov places a text in the image that is not literary-narrative, but rather aims at a semantic break, implying mental confusion. The bright inscriptions are related to cinema, art history, music, literature, even politics, as there is a synthesis between word and image with an alternating dominant, and in this ironic production it is difficult to find a shortcut to an unambiguous reading. Here a guide to the so-called "common sense" is not intended. In the canvases of Svilen Stefanov the reverse perspective gives a surreal psychologism to the inanimate objects. He builds up the pictorial surface through layers of thin imprimatures and velatures. Formats often imply horizontal development, and the composition of two or three objects implies symmetry. The author goes beyond the standard reflex of the academic artist to look for a "golden ratio" or whatever "correct" composition is. He is not afraid of mirror symmetry and enters between bars. Due to the above, there is every reason to claim that Svilen Stefanov possesses a figurative world and pictorial language built over time, both of which function in the world of art as a unique "trademark". Susana Nikolova Curator of the exhibition


SELECTED The second edition of the SELECTED exhibition presents the authors with whom ONE Gallery has been actively working with through the last years. This curatorial project accompanies the expansion of the gallery's activities and is carried out in the new space of ONE Gallery at 1A Diakon Ignatiy Str. Another aspect of the expansion of the gallery's activities includes the collaborative work with the newly created Foundation "Free Contemporary Arts" on projects in the field of art and culture. The curatorial selection includes new works by established authors both on the Bulgarian and international art scene - Bogdan Alexandrov, Georgi Ruzhev, Georgi Yankov, Krasen Troanski, Rassim, Petar Georgiev - Rey, Svilen Stefanov. SELECTED marks the beginning of a series of joint exhibitions and projects in the field of contemporary art. The project is implemented with the support of the Union of the Collectors in Bulgaria. Opening: November 2, 6:00 p.m. The exhibition will continue until November 29. We are expecting you!


The 18+ exhibition presents works by authors from the XXL group, created in 1994. In addition to the founders - Svilen Stefanov, Gennady Gatev, Huben Cherkelov, Georgi Tushev, Kosyo Minchev, Ivan Kyuranov, RASSIM®, and Petko Durmana, authors who have been involved in its activities over the years - Rosen Toshev, Dimitar Yaranov, Georgi Ruzhev, Boris Serginov and Krasimir Dobrev. The exhibition presents works that have a sharp social content and are extremely provocative. Art is one of the most powerful vehicles for social response. In recent years, we are in a situation of epidemics, military conflicts, natural disasters and an increasing devaluation of human values ​​at all levels. The authors of the XHL group cannot remain indifferent to everything that is happening, and their reaction to reality is their provocative and scandalous works. They have always been bold, extravagant and cosmopolitan, absolutely unfazed by guild displays of propriety. There is no fear of public opinion in their works, on the contrary – they provoke and brutally ask questions. Because the lack of a position in art sometimes shows cowardice. The idea for this exhibition was born after Group XXL's guest exhibition at the National Gallery of the Republic of North Macedonia, when the restrictive inscription 18 + appeared in front of the exhibition. Perhaps because ironically, but also quite seriously, questions of a social, moral and even political nature were raised. Because the 18+ restriction reveals different meanings and poses questions whose answers are not unambiguous. But certainly the hatred of the Russian military aggressor in this exhibition was frank, shocking, unexpected and largely politically inconvenient. Each of the authors has a successful artistic career. Some work abroad, others combine creativity with academic work, others perform independently in Bulgaria. Their works can be found in prestigious museums and private collections. Even as students, they enter the public space radically and unceremoniously. The first manifesto of the group "Kick in the Back of Inertia" was written and published at the beginning of 1995 in "Kultura", and later with additions it also appeared on the pages of "Literaturen Vestnik". The name XXL is also associated with the metropolitan gallery that existed between 1996 and 2003 on Macedonia Square. The names of some of the most popular exhibitions of the XXL circle sound like: "New Bulgarian Painting" (1996), "Kosyo, Huben, Tushev" (1997), "Dimensions of Violence" (1998), "Gangstart" (1998), "The Bulgarian Landscape as a Metaphor" (2001) and "New Radical Practices" (from 1997 to 2001). Gallery XXL was closed in 2003 by the regional governor of Sofia after an exhibition in the gallery under the name "AntiSax (New Political Art)". In 2017, the National Gallery presented the exhibition "XXL Group. Past and Present of a Countercultural Narrative", exploring the ХXL phenomenon and its influence on the Bulgarian artistic context in recent decades. Text and curator: Suzana Nikolova


Kitesurfing Injuries: Recasting Misfortune Solo exhibition by Ivan Moudov  07.03 - 03.04.2023  Opening: 07.03.2023, 18:00 Ivan Moudov thrives on taking risks and pushing boundaries. His latest body of work, created after sustaining multiple injuries from kitesurfing, is a balance between his physical resilience and creative spirit. Moudov has taken his damaged kites and transformed them into a series of 25 vibrant paintings and collages that capture the energy and motion of the sport and the fragility of the human body. The works on display in his solo exhibition at One Gallery are a visual representation of Moudov's inclination to turn adversity into art. Each piece features unique patterns and textures, created using the kites; torn and frayed fabric. The colors beneath are bold and bright, with a sense of movement and dynamism that echoes the adrenaline-fueled rush of kitesurfing. They are subdued by a transparent layer of white fabric, giving them a certain milky nuance and offering a mysteriously healing output. The works range in size and scale, from small, intimate collages to larger, more expansive paintings.  The exhibition will only be on display for a few short hours, as Moudov plans to take it down and create a completely new show during the inauguration. This act of creative destruction reflects the artist's willingness to embrace change and take risks in pursuit of his artistic vision. Text by: ChatGPT* *It is possible the text contains inaccurate and untruthful conclusions.


Ivan Stefanov  I  Antizen Historically, the photographic image has always been credited with the understanding of its certain authenticity. This traditional understanding of the univocity of the photographic image rejects its overlapping characteristics and fails to account for the fragmentation of space and its meanings. Ivan Stefanov's ten medium-format film photographs from the Antizen series reject this traditional notion of photography. The theme and title of the exhibition Antizen are aimed at the hidden essence of everyday life and material sophistication of modern man - his disharmony, disturbing desires and social arrangements, opposed to the harmony and balance of Zen-models in Eastern philosophy. In his research, the author constructs a new state of the photograph, where the digital post-production of the image destabilizes it as a record of the state of reality. These new possibilities of the photograph, defined by Susan Sontag as the "transporting role of the image", reveal different potential overlays and generate multiple perspectives. Ivan Stefanov restores the status of our familiar everyday life by projecting on it new, apparently unknown meanings, determined by speculating on the unnatural, uncomfortable situations of the individual in the urban environment. Banal existence is transformed into a new, almost documentary reality, where the author constructs visual images determined by a specific cultural norm. The reality that the characters in these photographs face generates a new historical reality, involving a complex formation of codes of behavior, rules, social norms, gestures, etc. The re/production of these photographic images and the appeal of the images themselves reinforce the significance and the impact of this medium. The viewer witnesses this new space, which is not measured solely by its technical parameters, but by the complete reconfiguration of reality, which leads to a change of perception and a new understanding of the idea of the image. The photographic medium itself in this case is aimed at its self-reflection. This is the "cinematic photography" defined by Jeff Wall, in which events are carefully staged and have an "almost documentary" impact. The cinematographic photographs in the exhibition are composed like classical paintings, bearing the marks of the objectivity of the happening. They are almost documentary, but at the same time preserve the physical nature of the medium. This is also a new attitude of photography toward painting. In the presented hybrid, composite images, photography and painting merge into works of art that we can define as a shift of communication and a purposeful creation of a multi-layered image. Ivan Stefanov does not overlap the documentary, but relates to it, speculating on its credibility. He does not represent specific situations, but a representation of those situations. It could be said that this is the end of objectivism in photography. A view that paralyzed photography rather than provided any clarity about its possibilities, which leads us to Wall's understanding that "we can now see the possibility of a photography evolving as photography." Genadi Gatev With the support of the National Culture Fund.

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