Ženy-sochárky

International Symposium of Women Sculptors from the V4 countries and Ukraine

In February this year, the civic association NAPS organized a conference on the status of women in society in cooperation with the Matej Bel University, with the title “Women in Charge”. The conference was held in Banská Bystrica. After this successful event NAPS is coming up with another event where women and their capability plays a key role.
In cooperation with the Warhol Partners Gallery (member of the Andy Warhol Society), NAPS prepared a symposium of women sculptors from the V4 countries and Ukraine to commemorate the 80th anniversary of the birthday of the founder of pop-art Andy Warhol. The symposium took place in Medzilaborce, in Andy Warhol’s Museum of Modern Art in late August and early September.
The event was graced by the patronage of Ivetta Macejková, Chief Justice of the Slovak Constitutional Court, who is the first woman in our country to head the Constitutional Court.
The symposium reached its peak at the art opening held in Andy Warhol’s Museum of Modern Art in Medzilaborce on Thursday, 4 September 2008, hosting more than 80 guests. “A wise and beautiful woman is a blessing for a man. We have gathered here today to admire the artistic wisdom of 12 women from 5 countries, the wisdom in art which is recast into more than 20 sculptures that display the beauty of art. I am very much honoured and happy about the fact that Ms. Ivetta Macejková, a respected woman in whom wisdom and beauty is wedded, has assumed the patronage over this symposium and, making this gesture, appreciated the presented works of art and the spirit of our event,” said Peter Solej, president of NAPS in his introductory speech.
He then extended his welcome note to the most distinguished guests of the opening: Mr. Bogdan Wrzochalski, Minister Counsellor and Chargé d’Affaires of the Polish Republic in Slovakia, Mr. János Szerencsés, Consul General of the Hungarian Republic in Košice, Mr. Oto Sabo, director of the Regional Bureau of the Office of the President of the Slovak Republic in Košice, His Eminence the Most Reverend Despotis Ján, Orthodox archbishop of Prešov and Slovakia, professor René Matlovič, rector of Prešov University, professor Juraj Sinay, vice rector of the Technical University in Košice, as well as mayors of the municipalities in the Medzilaborce county.
After the visitors were welcomed to Andy Warhol’s Museum of Modern Art in Medzilaborce by its director, Ms. Valika Maďarová, Jozef Skybjak, spokesman of the Constitutional Court of the Slovak Republic took the floor and addressed the guests. He apologized to the guests for the inability of the Chief Justice of the Constitutional Court Ms. Ivetta Macejková to attend the opening and read to them Ms. Macejková’s greeting words.
Because Ms. Ivetta Macejková planned to open the event personally and it was only at the last moment that she was prevented from doing so due to important state duties, she sent all women sculptors personal gifts – glass plaques displaying the front motif of the Constitution of the Slovak Republic. At the end of the event, these plaques were presented to the sculptors who attended the opening.
Before they guests could see the exhibited works, Martin Cubjak, vice-president of NAPS and curator of the Warhol Partners Gallery addressed the visitors. “The aim of the project was to set up a comparative space for a variety of creative approaches to sculptures made by women – artists from the V4 countries and the Ukraine – and to present their final works by means of an exhibition in Andy Warhol’s Museum of Modern Art in Medzilaborce, the only European museum dedicated to the king of pop-art,” Cubjak said at the beginning of his lecture on the position of women in art. At the same time, and within the context of the symposium, he added that the goal of the exhibition was to react to current approaches to sculpture, its potential creation using new technological possibilities and applying modern visual means of expression and diverse sculpting methods, to present new alternatives in sculpting, as well as in the exhibition installation itself.
The visitors were the first to see among the exhibited works classical sculptures with portraits, a naïve sculpture – a woodcutting depicting Christ, light installations with various levels of metaphorical meaning, as well as installations made from 100-year-old wood to which a glass painting is attached. The exhibits included also small installations made from natural materials, such as chestnut or thorns. The twenty exhibited works included various sculptures made using combined techniques – for example a spider which was made combining the technique of etching with the use of wire and natural materials. The organizers informed the visitors that it was their intention to transform the project and made it into a touring exhibition.
After the successful opening of the exhibition of art works created during the sculpture symposium and the viewing of works created by Andy Warhol, the king of pop-art, the symposium continued with a reception. At its beginning, His Eminence the Most Reverend Despotis Ján, Orthodox archbishop of Prešov and Slovakia blessed the food.

Under the financial auspices of:

Slovak Art Gallery,
Warhol Partners Gallery, Member of the Andy Warhol Society,
Bratislavská teplárenská, a. s.
and Partners of NAPS in 2008.