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19.08.2013 INTERVIEW

Giuditta R. Foto: Maria Bordorff.

Spot on an emerging foreign artist in Copenhagen

Kopenhagen has met the young Italian artist Giuditta R for a talk about life in Copenhagen as foreign, emerging artist from southern Europe, about the first meeting with the artistic milieu here and about walking from gallery to gallery with the portfolio under the arm. Giuditta R (born in 1984) has a master's degree from the Academy of Fine Art in Catania, Italy. She has been living and working in Copenhagen since 2009

AF Maria Bordorff

Why did you choose to leave your home country for Copenhagen?
Well It wasn't actually a choice in particular. I felt, like most people I guess, to leave my home country to experience something else. I didnt know much about Copenhagen before coming though. I studied the Cobra Group at the Academy of Fine Art in Catania, a movement from Northern Europe which has always inspired me. They were based in Brussels, Amsterdam and Copenhagen. So that was pretty much everything I knew about Copenhagen before coming here. 

I participated in the Erasmus exchange program back in 2007 and followed a brief course of study, oriented towards virtual art, at the Ballerup department of Aalborg University. I fell in love with this city, with the culture, and I felt that there could be a better opportunity for my art here, than in Sicily.
So I went around the galleries with my portfolio, literally! Christoffer Egelund Gallery in Bredgade appreciated my works and I joined one of his summer group shows back in 2009.

Giuditta R, Nørrebro, Copenhagen, 2013. Photo Maria Bordorff

Which were your first impressions of the art scene here?
I remember the works of Michael Kvium. At the university where I studied here, they had a work of his hanging and I really liked it. But I also remember seeing a lot of very styled and humorous art around in the galleries, as if there was a light and sligthly superficial approach to art here. In fact, some people have interpreted my works as being solely humorous and therefore leaving ignorance towards the ”darker” aspects of my works.

Having spend now some years in this city, I have though got a more varied idea of the contemporary art scene here and I happen to generally like what is going on.

How did you approach the Copenhagen art scene?
I understood the importance of being present at the openings of the galleries, especially the ones following your work. It's there you do your initial networking. And this is something I have come to understand with the time, as the Academy I went to back home, did not prepare me for the post-academic meeting with the art world; it's not like here, where the graduates from the art academies are somehow nursed into the art scene, which is something I – with honesty – will admit to have been a bit envious of.

But during a vernissage I met the art agent Tijana Miskovic, through whom I have been assigned to the Mentorship Programme of the Danish Art Council. The programme resulted in a big exhibition in Den Frie Udstillingsbygning back in 2011, curated by Tijana Miskovic and Jane Jin Kaisen. The exhibition was titled Generous Gestures and it was dedicated to interculturalism.
I made an installation in collaboration with my previous Danish mentor, artist Anne Bennike. It was a very interesting experience and a positive collaboration. 

Giuditta R, 2013. Photo Maria Bordorff

How has your work been received so far?
It has been received well, that is for sure. I appreciate the dialogues with the audience during an exhibition and I feel, that people have got something interesting to say about my works too. I always find it inspiring to listen to their personal interpretations of the works and to see how different works can create different relations to the individual viewer. I am indeed pleased about this.

My works are part of a research about general human issues on a profound, unconsciouss level. They are another way of portraying human feelings – also (or in particular) those which we normally find uncomfortable to manifest or to talk about.
The Generous Gestures show was a well-fitting frame for my works to unfold within, as the intercultural aspect of the art's gesture has become an existential element of my research after leaving my home country. Repressed feelings are something which we can all relate to, and I believe that there are some archetypic patterns of feelings that cross the cultural borders.

Thank you!

For more information about Giuditta R and her work, visit www.giuditta-r.com

The bad party, 2010. Foto: Giuditta R.

Sisters II, 2011. Foto: Giuditta R.

Blind anger IV, 2011. Foto: Giuditta R.

Brothers XIII, 2011. Foto: Giuditta R.

You could not be in better hands than ours, 2011. Foto: Giuditta R.

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