Bulgarian Books at the Homo Faber 2022 Event
Our “Pillars Collection” from 2019 was selected to participate in the grand event Homo Faber in Venice, Italy between 10 April – 01 May 2022 – .
This edition celebrates the “living treasures” of craftsmanship through 15 exceptional exhibitions which invite visitors to discover the connection between Europe and Japan. Imagined by a team of world-renowned curators and designers, the event transforms the magnificent spaces of the @fondazionegcini, as well as offering visitors the chance to experience craftsmanship right across Venice.
We were positioned in the “Next of Europe” Exhibition. The cabinet of curiosities will showcase a stunning selection of objects drawn from all over Europe, crafted by the master artisans who not only embody the finest European craftsmanship but are dedicated to transmitting their savoir-faire to the next generation through apprenticeships and training.
I arrived a few days before the official opening to comfortably settle in the outskirts of Venice. I spent a wonderful week in there, witnessing the most impressive celebration of contemporary craft organized by such an impressive team of curators. It took me about four days to actually see everything in detail. The event, located on the island San Giorgio Maggiore, was stretched on more than 4000 m2.
Even after the first day. the appreciation I witnessed, along with the creations of so many talented artisans really left me with a strong feeling of hope and inspiration for the future.
I had the opportunity to meet some wonderful people. As fate would have it, most of them fellow Bulgarians.
Rosina Pencheva is the ambassador for Sofia, Bulgaria and has helped immensely during all stages of my participation in this event and in the inclusion in their online guide. I was very happy to learn from her and discuss some future collaborations that might soon be fact in Bulgaria.
I was very happy to meet Petya who is currently one of the Young Ambassadors educating visitors throughout the whole event. Luckily, she’s stationed in the Next Of Europe exhibition, where my work is placed and I can’t hope for a better person to tell people about it! She’s the only young ambassador from Bulgaria and she studies metal arts and jewelry in the Bulgarian Academy of Arts.
I don’t think we managed to get a picture together in the heat of things but it was great to meet the other Bulgarian participant Dimitar Stankov and his lovely family, who specializes in creating metal art objects and jewelry using quite innovative methods. The rain split us apart rather soon but we started a conversation that will surely continue at some point!
It was an honor to also meet the director and representatives from the Etar Museum in Gabrovo, Bulgaria, who also played an instrumental part for my participation, as they’re the institutional ambassador for Bulgaria in the organization.
Miroslav from NoPoint Atelier is a talented artist and print maker from Bulgaria that was also part of the team. Had some lovely talks discussing printing technologies I had no idea about but eager to learn at some point!
I was fortunate to meet the curator for the Next of Europe Exhibition at Homo Faber, mainly Jean Blanchaert. It was a short but inspiring talk that hopefully will have some productive follow-ups in the future. Also, the artisans from various luxury brands at the Genealogies of Ornament exhibition were such a huge inspiration for me.
Exploring a Unique City
My stay in Venice and the experiences there had a much broader scope than just seeing my works in the Next of Europe exhibition.
Though overwhelmingly historical in its atmosphere, I was amazed that the city embedded into that context so much contemporary examples of art and craft.
Every museum and palace wasn’t limiting its exhibitions to objects of the past but really did their best to interweave local and international contemporary artists into this precious heritage.
I had to opportunity to see Anselm Kiefer‘s massive collaboration with the spaces of Venice’s Doge Palaces rooms.
I was also surprised to discover Tony Cragg’s Silicon Dioxide exhibition in the Murano Glass Museum.
Had a wonderful time visiting the Peggy Guggenheim Collection as well.
I spend too much time digging in the past and it was refreshing to see something so close to today. Venice really is a very special place for art and craft, not just for Italy but for the world. Never really realized it this clearly until now.