The investigative nomad
Born in Romania in 1965, Bogdan Achimescu received his art education in Cluj, Romania and Kraków, Poland. Now a Polish citizen, he lives and works between Poland and the USA. He has held academic positions at several universities in the USA since 1997, currently Visiting Artist at the University of Virginia, Charlottesville (2002-04). He works in a variety of media and techniques, including drawing, printmaking, installation, video, digital arts and text. In 2001 he represented Romania at the Venice Biennale as part of the Context Network project.
Romanian-born Bogdan Achimescu set his course as an international artist when he moved to Kraków in Poland in 1990 to study for an MFA at the Academy of Fine Arts. He worked there as a Teaching Assistant from 1993-94. He is now a Polish citizen and lives between Poland and the USA, also spending time in Timisoara, Romania.
In 1997 he travelled to the USA as Guest Lecturer at the Illinois Wesleyan University and Visiting Artist in other universities in Indiana, Wisconsin and Illinois. He has since had longer academic appointments with the University of Arizona in Tucson (2001-02) and is currently Visiting Artist at the University of Virginia, Charlottesville (2002-04). He teaches drawing and digital arts and is a skilled printmaker.
Rejecting the normal definitions, Achimescu described himself in his biography for the Context Network project in the Romanian Pavilion at the 2001 Venice Biennale as:
"Nomad draughtsman and installationist. Printmaker, multilingual fiction writer, teacher, computer artist, photographer, performer. Traditionalist mono-media artist, traveller."
Cultural identity is a subject in Achimescu´s work. He creates myths and legends to invent a society, their beliefs, attitudes, appearance and accoutrements. He makes installations which display the evidence of the society and its habitat. His work is both playful and serious. It looks at what constitutes a society, how much space people need, what is necessary for survival and deals with how people present themselves to others and the nature of conformity. Achimescu works in a variety of media and techniques including drawing, printmaking, installation and video.
´Context´ is a long-term project, intended to be realised in different instances, under different institutional circumstances, under changing conditions and configurations. The project is described as "a mediatic instrument to dynamically evaluate and examine a context defined by the conditions and situation (world - art scene - curator - artist - event - art scene - world), by the artists and by the physical and virtual spaces in the project. The project tries to investigate this context by sovereign and at some amount coordinated artistic action. Thus the exhibited work is the interactive product of a process taking place through the performance of individuals acting autonomously, but integrated."
Achimescu is one of the seventeen participants of Romanian origin who form the Context Network. He exhibited a digital work which presents the centralised physiognomy registry (RCF, Registrul Centralizat de Fizionomii) designed to systematise data on facial characteristics of dissident suspects under the Communist regime.
Bogdan Achimescu has been awarded several important residencies. In 1999 he spent time at two artists´ houses in Germany, Kunstlerhaus Lukas in Ahrenshoop and Kunstlerhaus Kloster in Cismar. He was artist in residence at Vermont College in the USA in 2003. Other residencies include the USA (Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture and The International School of Loose Affiliations), France (ARIAP, Liessies), Poland and Northern Ireland.
Achimescu has made connections with various arts institutions in Ireland. First he was printmaker in residence at Seacourt Print Workshop in Northern Ireland in 1998, followed by Resident Artist at the Royal Hospital in Belfast, Northern Ireland in 2000. He worked at the Model Arts Centre in Sligo, Republic of Ireland, in 2001, creating new work and running a children´s workshop for The Sligo Project. He has also exhibited in Cork, Limerick, Derry´s Orchard Gallery and at the Temple Bar Gallery in Dublin. While in Northern Ireland in 1998 he gave a lecture at the Maze Prison.
Bogdan Achimescu´s work is represented in major museum collections around the world. These include MOMA, New York, National Gallery of Art in Washington DC, the City Museum in Venice, the National Art Museums of Poland and Hungary, Art Museum of Sao Paolo in Brazil and the Albertinum in Vienna.
He has had numerous one and two person shows in Europe and the USA. In 2003 he presents large format thermal transfer prints at the Scuola Internationale di Grafica in Venice. A major project is planned for 2004, ´Dialog Loci´, a site-specific installation with John Ford on the ruins of the Kotrzyn fortress.
Bogdan Achimescu was born in Timisoara, Romania in 1965 and lives between Poland and the USA. He graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts in Cluj, Romania in 1990 and then moved to Kraków, Poland to study for an MFA at the Academy of Fine Arts. He is now a Polish citizen. Since 1997 he has held academic positions at several universities in the USA and is currently Visiting Artist at the University of Virginia, Charlottesville (2002-04) where he teaches drawing and digital arts. Achimescu has worked in numerous countries and gained recognition with residency awards and a number of site-specific projects. He has held many international solo exhibitions and his work is in major museum collections around the world. In 2001 he was part of the Context Network, representing Romania at the Venice Biennale.
EXHIBITIONS: ONE AND TWO PERSON SHOWS (selected)
Exhibition / Installation,
2003 Scuola Internationala di Grafica, Venice (project)
2002 Good Bacteria, Bad Bacteria, Gocaia Gallery, Tucson, Arizona
2002 Cities and Citizens, Orchard Gallery, Derry, N. Ireland
2002 Limerick City Gallery, Ireland
2001 The Sligo Project, Model Arts Centre, Sligo, Ireland
2001 Dialog of Things, KULA - the Mysliborz Museum, Germany - Poland
2001 Ephemeral Works, Passage de la Place Pury, Neuchatel, Switzerland
2000 Fayerweather Gallery, University of Virginia, USA
1999 Galeria Jan Fejkiel, Krakow, Poland
1997 ´67.4 Peaceful Drunkards´, The SOFA Gallery, Indiana University, USA
1997 Merwin Wakeley Galleries, Illinois Wesleyan University, USA
1997 Galeria First, Timisoara, Romania
MOMA, New York, USA
National Gallery of Art, Washington DC, USA
The Albertinum, Vienna, Austria
National Gallery, Prague, Czech Republic
University of Iowa Museum of Art, USA
City Museum, Venice, Italy
National Museum of Catalunya, Barcelona, Spain
Art Museum of Sao Paolo, Brazil
Alvar Aalto Museum, Jyvaskyla, Finland
Ludwigsmuseum, Cologne, Germany
National Art Museum, Budapest, Hungary
National Art Museum, Warsaw, Poland
Ufizzi Cabinet, Florence, Italy
National Print Collection, Munich, Germany
Pouchkine Museum, Moscow, Russia
Tama Art University Museum, Tokyo, Japan
City Museum, Turin, Italy
National Graphic Arts Institute, Rome, Italy
GROUP EXHIBITIONS (Selected)
Exhibition / Installation,
2001 The Venice Biennale, Romanian Pavilion, as part of the Context Network
2001 The Fort of Art - Fort Sztuki, The Temple Bar Gallery and Studios, Dublin
2000 Polish Photography, Galeria Ra, Kiev, Ukraine
1997-98 ´Markings, Contemporary Polish Works on Paper´, The Edna Carlsten Gallery, University of Wisconsin; Hatton Gallery, Colorado State University; Concordia College, St Paul, Minnesota; University of Arkansas, Little Rock, Arkansas.
1997 ´Small Drawings, Different Commentaries´, National Museum, Gdansk & BWA Gallery Slupsk, Poland
1995 ´3 Grafikere´, North Norwegian Art Centre, Svolvaer, Norway
1995 ´Petit Format sur Papier´, Musee du Petit Format, Couvin, Belgium
1993 Krakow - Cork, Municipal Gallery, Cork and Dublin, Ireland
1993 Cleveland International Drawing Biennial, UK
GRANTS & AWARDS
1997 Honorary Fellow, University of Wisconsin, USA
1997 Soros Foundation grant, Romania
1995 Travel grant, Soros Foundation Romania
1995 Nathaniel Salsontal Art Fund Fellowship, USA
1990-93 Polish Government Scholarship, Poland
2003 Artist in Residence, Vermont College, USA
2000 Resident Artist, The Royal Hospital, Belfast, Northern Ireland
1999 Nature, representation et experience, ARIAP, Liessies, France
1999 Residency, Kunstlerhaus Lukas, Germany
1999 Residency, Kunstlerhaus Kloster Cismar, Germany
1998 Printmaker in Residence, Seacourt Print Workshop, Northern Ireland
1998 Photography and New Media Residency, Ojcow, Poland
1997 Residency, The International School of Loose Affiliations, USA
1995-96 Resident Artist, Art-Cite, Switzerland
2002-04 Visiting Artist, University of Virginia, Charlottesville
2001-02 Visiting Professor, University of Arizona, Tucson
2000 Visiting Professor, University of Virginia, Charlottesville
1995-98 Visiting Professor, Academy of Fine Arts, Cluj, Romania
1998 Lecture, The Maze Prison, Northern Ireland
1997 Visiting Artist, Illinois State University, USA
1997 Visiting Artist, University of Wisconsin, USA
1997 Visiting Artist, Indiana University, USA
1997 Guest Lecturer, Illinois Wesleyan University, USA
1993-94 Teaching Assistant, Academy of Fine Arts, Krakow, Poland
This artist took part in the following project(s) organized/funded by the culturebase.net partner institutions.
(01 January 00 - 31 March 00)