06/01/2017 Nastasia Meyrat Open spaces are are what I’m looking for

Working in Davidoff Studios. Altos de Chavón, Dominican Republic, 2017

Open spaces are (mental and physical spaces where to gather, encounter or where to cross through) are what I’m looking for, in general and in art. I think that the Davidoff Art Initiative offers that. It’s such an opportunity to be able to travel so far to do art and to meet people at the same time, to have a bridge built for artists and people to exchange.

I perceive art as a content of information and knowledge, as a tool to communicate. Art practices say a lot about issues, about politics but can also be poetic. What was so beautiful about the chance to go to Altos de Chavòn, is learning and multipling perspective about art and the world. It is so easily done to rely on a Western perspective of art, it is also so easily done to be satisfied about an idea of what and how things should or shouldn’t be, that changing contexts is stimulating all senses and reactivates mutual curiosity. The way I understand curiosity is the fact of being ready to conceptually “move”, which is in my opinion really important for an artist, as it can be a practice in itself.

The fact that there’s the art school in the same place that the residency and that the school organizes conferences gave the possibility to both meet students and artists. That was the most important for me, as it was essential, in my opinion, to be able to learn from the local about the country, or just to have the opportunity to have discussions. So this human experience of building and creating relationships through art was what I found there.

I think the Davidoff Art Initiative put a great effort to make the artists in residency feel super comfortable. I always felt supported in my work (financially as much as through discussions). I think the balance between the expectations of the Davidoff Art Initiative and the one of the art residents have is nice, as the experience there is so individual that one needs to experiment it subjectively.

Those three months in residency were truly an experience that continues to influence me a lot personally and in my practice, thanks to the many encounters I had in the Dominican Republic.