Linda Peitz is a creative director, project manager, and curator living in Berlin. She is the founder and director of CCCCCOMAe.V. (Curational Collective Connecting Concepts of Communication and Art) since 2020 and the curator and exhibition manager of the Gallery Ebensperger. As a curator and exhibition manager at the Berlin and Austrian based gallery Ebensoperger, she is responsible for exhibition planning and curating, artist liaisons within the gallery, and the representation of the gallery to collectors, museums, and institutions During December 2022 and January 2023, Linda Peitz has been the curator-in-residence in Bucharest, part of the ARAC ART & RESIDENCY program.
Textile art in Bucharest
Text by Linda Peitz
During my stay at the ARAC ART & RESIDENCY in Bucharest, I focused on getting to know the art scene in Bucharest and met several artists from Romania. The stay was extremely nourishing and and has given me the chance to really concentrate on a deeper research of topics that I am interested in, e.g. the idea of how contemporary art works as a commentary of societal and political grievances.
I became especially intrigued by the work of the Romanian-American artist Megan Dominescu, whom I met several times, and how she employs traditional rug-hooking and knitting techniques in daring, funny and sharp social commentaries on contemporary lifestyles as often used in every day online advertisements and on the streets. I was wondering how textiles can serve as catalysts of societal and cultural processes and did more research on the history of textiles in modern and contemporary art. Textiles have always been a means of storytelling. Similar to ceramics, glass design or architecture, it has long been reduced to decorative crafts instead of counting as actual art and has often been associated with women rather than men. From rug-hooking, to fibre art, tapestry, weaving, embroidery and knitting, the socially meaningful role of textile materials also becomes apparent in clothing, design, science and technology.
In Megan’s work I felt that everyday and politically charged situations could become relevant through the use of textile fabrics: by turning an everyday material and technique into a means of expression, while simultaneously subverting its traditional attributes and moral valuation. It was fascinating to connect the scenes and topics of her works to what I experienced and saw in everyday life in Bucharest: from street signs and public toilet architecture to erotic massage advertisements. It also helped me to get a better understanding of certain parts of Romanian history and the people living there. Towards the end of my stay in Bucharest I became interested in putting Megan’s work into a broader art historical perspective.
This is something I would like to keep working on: How does her oeuvre fit into the history of textile art (from modern positions like Anni Albers and Sheila Hicks to contemporary artists)? What examples of textile art do we have today?