The 14th edition of the Art Moves International Festival of Billboard Art, i.e. art which makes us aware that truth is like water – essential for life and human survival, while an omnipresent lie is like a gunshot at the back of the head!

This year the festival will be organised in Toruń for the fourteenth time. Unfortunately, in a truncated and crisis form due to the epidemic and the resulting economic crisis that has hit hard culture and art. Despite this, we do not give up, and we have prepared a huge (though smaller than in recent years) chunk of visual reflections created by artists from all over the world. They concern a very important issue: “Getting infected with untruth. How can we find our path in a world full of contradictions, chaos and uncertainty?”. Like every year, during the festival, the city space of Toruń will show the works of talented debutants and renowned international artists. The official opening of the festival will take place on 3 September, with the works presented on citylights and LED displays available starting 1 September.  

This festival is special for many reasons. We are still living with the pandemic and fear combined with hope that this will finally be over. This crisis has hit particularly hard art and independent culture, including our festival. Difficult as it is, we are trying to not give up and are looking for some sparkles of hope. Last year, the festival was devoted to the expanding pandemic. This year, we have touched an equally hot topic resulting directly from the previous one – the new “epidemic”, i.e. the global infection with untruth.

This edition is a kind of a hot report from the battlefield, a fresh message and personal reflections “displayed on billboards” by artists from all over the world. It is a palette of different perspectives on how we cope, or do not cope with this new challenge facing humanity today – the phenomenon of doubting the concept of truth and a widespread belief in a lie; that everyone has the right for their personal truth and opinion, and it is nobody’s business; that truth is subjective, rather than objective. A large section of the society worldwide believed in the old saying that “Every stupid person has their own truth”. This statement underwent a small correction and the word “stupid” was removed. And we do need something that unites us and goes beyond subjectivity. We need a universal language. One interesting conclusion drawn from these 14 years of organising the festival is the fact that art is a universal language, which means that artists are able to find a common language despite their national, cultural and individual differences. Artists are able to communicate beyond borders, and they put a lot of effort into searching for universal areas and themes for communication, which is why since the beginning of our festival we have received 13,300 works of 7,400 artists from 112 countries. We could joke that during our festival the entire world communicates, dialogues visually, and tries to find answers to important contemporary issues.

We urgently need consensus in the global context, which has been powerfully demonstrated over the past months of the pandemic. Without global communication beyond borders and our differences, we will not be able to deal with upcoming crises and issues (e.g. the climate crisis). We need to change our point of view in order to notice what unites us rather than what divides us. For this reason, it is of utmost importance that we stick to the concept of objective TRUTH and support it. Otherwise, the world will change into the global Tower of Babel, i.e. the omnipresent mixing the languages, a lack of understanding, and chaos.

The artworks will be exhibited in the city space of Toruń on billboards, citylights and LED displays. The model of presenting art in the city space works especially well in times of the crisis related to the epidemic as it allows recipients to safely participate in culture, without risking their health. For one month the city space will turn into a unique art gallery with valuable works, free of charge and available 24h/7. In this way, the works make a noise in the world and reach a wide audience, even those recipients who do not visit traditional art galleries and museums.

As always, the festival consists of a competition phase and then a presentation of the artists invited by the organisers. The best works are to be presented on billboards. Leitmotifs of our festivals always correspond with social processes and phenomena that shape the contemporary world. They stem from a deep sociological, psychological and philosophical reflection, and express our care of the shape of reality we are living in. International artists are largely interested in the competition and festival, which indicates the mesmerising potential of the idea of this event, and of public space that serves for deep reflections and social communication.

This year works relate to the leitmotiv of the entire event: “Getting infected with untruth. How can we find our path in a world full of contradictions, chaos and uncertainty?”. 462 artists from 63 countries entered the contest “Getting infected with untruth. How can we find our path in a world full of contradictions, chaos and uncertainty?”. We received 832 artworks from China, Taiwan, Cuba, Kazakhstan, Cambodia, USA, India, and many others! The Covid-19 pandemic has shown that the notion of truth is a fundamental problem in the contemporary world, posing a challenge for individuals, societies and the globalised contemporary world. Until quite recently, we did not notice this problem and it seemed to us that we could do without the concept of truth. The current global crisis connected with the pandemic has made us aware of the fact that our own subjective beliefs, opinions and feelings are not sufficient. In order to function properly, individuals and societies need something more, something that we have considered to be out of fashion and passé – objective truth. Humans’ species name is homo sapiens, which means ‘wise man’. Sticking to objective facts and referring to objective reality help us function in this complex contemporary world. Is it worth taking up the challenge of reaching the truth? Is it at all possible? How can we recognise what is true and what is false? Who is a role model that we can trust, and who is a self-proclaimed internet ‘expert’? Does each person has his/her own truth, or is there objective truth? Who and what should we believe? 

The jury panel composed of artists and curators, including:

Adam Niklewicz / artist / North Haven, Connecticut, USA

Mark Titchner / artist / London, Great Britain

Małgorzata Augustyniak / art historian, vice-president AMS SA / Warsaw, Poland

Rafał Góralski / artist, curator, Art Moves Festival director/ Toruń, Poland

selected 6 most interesting projects which will be exhibited on billboards during the Art Moves Festival 2021.

 

Here is the list of honoured artists:

Fanghong Huang / China

Junjun Fan / China

Chia Hsiang Lee / Taiwan

Mario Estevez / Mexico

Pola Piestrzeniewicz / Poland

Lex Drewiński / Poland / Germany

The Main Award of 3 500 PLN receives Fanghong Huang from China.

Fanghong Huang / China – the winner of the competition

The winning work in a very blunt and shocking manner makes us aware of what may happen with us and our civilisation if we stop believing in truth, and believe in a lie. This work refers to the well-known story of Pinocchio whose nose grew when he told a lie. In Fanghong Huang’s work this extended nose goes beyond the edge of the billboard and appears on the other side as… the gun pointed at the back of the head. It is worth taking this concise and blunt message to heart and to… head to not lose it.

Lex Drewiński / Poland / Germany

This work tells us that each of us can tear off a piece of truth and use it as we see fit. Unfortunately, it turns out that our small piece of truth is just a defective part of a whole, a single letter that makes a logical and meaningful whole only when it is put together with other letters – parts of truth. In a word, although it seems to us that truth can be divided into parts or pieces, it is not possible.

Chia Hsiang Lee / Taiwan

This work tells us that anyone can, or rather must, have their opinion and view on any and every topic. But what do these billions of opinions and views result in? The real Tower of Babel… actually, not the tower, but the separating wall. The wall of hard bricks of opinions that cannot be crossed! Nobody communicates, everybody expresses their opinions, nobody is listening. In this chaos and multiplicity of voices everyone is alone with their opinions that they are clinging to.

Galeria Rusz / Poland / Cultivate openness and curiosity, as this is a first step to heaven

Galeria Rusz / Poland / Truth will set us free, and a lie will captivate us

This work depicts how important it is to nurture such features of character as openness and curiosity, as they help us break patterns and walls that separate us from others, and also help us better understand ourselves and others. Truth will set us free from isolation and loneliness. Seeking, understanding and facing truth allow us to go beyond ourselves, develop and build real relationships with others and the world.

 

Daniz Habibpour / Iran

This work shows how splitting hairs and blurring the truth can lead to total chaos and decision paralysis, both in individual and collective life. Like in the work of this Iran artist, if there is a lack of clear principles, and the traffic light has a lot of intermediate colours, we are not able to decide when we should go, and when we should stop. We stop like paralysed, half way. We stop developing.

 

Michał Łącki / Poland

This work highlights a narcissistic trait that is so common in the contemporary world. The majority of us want to show ourselves in the best possible light. When we embellish our own image, we are getting confused and we do not know who we are. Are we ourselves, or rather our own image that we have created to show our best side? Do we believe in truth or a lie about us?

 

Not only do artists come to grips with the festival slogan. Our spectators will also be able to join in the creation – as part of Art Moves Workshop, where workshops for children will be conducted. There will also be special interactive billboards that will allow recipients to take an active part in the festival.

 

In this edition of the festival, we will exhibit the works by 32 artists from 17 countries:

The show on the billboards, citylightes and on the LED screen:

Fanghong Huang / China

Junjun Fan / China

Chia Hsiang Lee / Taiwan

Mario Estevez / Mexico

Pola Piestrzeniewicz / Poland

Lex Drewiński / Poland / Germany

Wei Su / Canada

Michał Łącki / Poland

Daniz Habibpour / Iran

Peng Zuo Biao / China

Joanna Górska i Rafał Góralski (Galeria Rusz)

 

The special show on the advertising pillar:

Alexander Fomin / Russia

Anna Wei / USA

Arnav Nigam / India

Chia Yu Hsu / Taiwan

Erick Ginard / Cuba

He Huang / China

Henrique Campos / Brazil

Jixin Wang / China

Justyna Markiewicz / Poland

Liliane Wong / Hong Kong

Łukasz Mesjasz / Poland

Magdalena Dylak / Poland

Marisa Passos / Portugal

Mateusz Domeradzki / Poland

Michał Łącki / Poland

Nur Ernehir / Turkey

Raqee Najmuldeen / Iraq

Tomasz Talerzak / Poland

Vaso Krčmar / Serbia

Wenlong Zhang / China

Yukun Liu / China

 

The opening

The official opening of the festival will take place on 3th September at 12 noon at Rapackiego Square in Toruń and will be accompanied by the artistic performance.

 

Festival programme

01.09 – 30.09 – exposition of artworks on citylights located at bus stops (the entire city)

01.09 – 30.09 – exposition of artworks on LED displays Kraszewskiego / Matejki Street

01.09 – 30.09 the special show on the advertising pillar (Pl. Rapackiego near the University Museum; thanks to the support of the international community of artists, sympathisers of the festival and Bike Cafe).

03.09 – 30.09 – exposition of artworks on billboards (Rapackiego Square, Wały gen. Sikorskiego Street, Szosa Chełmińska Street / City Market)

03.09 godz. 12 – opening of the festival, Galeria Rusz artistic performance (Rapackiego Square)

04.09 godz. 13 – Art Moves Workshop / workshops for kids / interactive billboards for children, teenagers and adults (Rapackiego Square)

 

Art Moves Festival is held under the honorary patronage of Piotr Całbecki, Marshal of the Kujawsko-Pomorskie Region and Michał Zaleski, President of Toruń

The festival has been co-funded by the Local Authorities of Kujawsko-Pomorskie Region and Toruń Municipality

 

 

Partners:


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Sorry, this entry is only available in polski.

The Billboard Art Competition 2021 “Getting infected with untruth. How can we find our path in a world full of contradictions, chaos and uncertainty?” settled!

462 artists from 63 countries entered the contest “Getting infected with untruth. How can we find our path in a world full of contradictions, chaos and uncertainty?”. We received 832 artworks from China, Taiwan, Cuba, Kazakhstan, Cambodia, USA, India, and many others!

 

The jury panel composed of artists and curators, including:

Adam Niklewicz / artist / North Haven, Connecticut, USA

Mark Titchner / artist / London, Great Britain

Małgorzata Augustyniak / art historian, vice-president AMS SA / Warsaw, Poland

Rafał Góralski / artist, curator, Art Moves Festival director/ Toruń, Poland

selected 6 most interesting projects which will be exhibited on billboards during the Art Moves Festival 2021.

 

Here is the list of honoured artists:

Fanghong Huang / China

Junjun Fan / China

Chia Hsiang Lee / Taiwan

Mario Estevez / Mexico

Pola Piestrzeniewicz / Poland

Lex Drewiński Poland / Germany

 

The Main Award of 3 500 PLN receives Fanghong Huang from China.

 

The works of the following artists will be presented in the special show, on the pillar (thanks to the support of the international community of artists and sympathisers of the festival):

Alexander Fomin / Russia

Anna Wei / USA

Arnav Nigam / India

Chia Yu Hsu / Taiwan

Erick Ginard / Cuba

He Huang / China

Henrique Campos / Brazil

Jixin Wang / China

Justyna Markiewicz / Poland

Liliane Wong / Hong Kong

Łukasz Mesjasz / Poland

Magdalena Dylak / Poland

Marisa Passos / Portugal

Mateusz Domeradzki / Poland

Michał Łącki / Poland

Nur Ernehir / Turkey

Raqee Najmuldeen / Iraq

Tomasz Talerzak / Poland

Vaso Krčmar / Serbia

Wenlong Zhang / China

Yukun Liu / China

 

The festival starts on 3rd of September.

 

Congratulation for the winner and the authors of singled out works! Obviously, there have been many more examples worthy of display! We would like to say „Thank you” all artists who submitted their works and invite them for checking up for next year’s topic.