„Still Making Art Klaipėda“: exhibition curated by Aaron McLaughlin
Still Making Art is a platform for early-career and under-represented artists established by Aaron McLaughlin and Simon Boase in 2013. After ebbing between a collaborative and socially engaged Amsterdam-based practice, the project was solely defined as a curatorial outlet from 2018, aimed to support pre-emerging artists who currently lack professional guidance or institutional endorsement.
In Amsterdam, the project utilised the scarce resource of space, promoting artists in an open ended series of group exhibitions, with the common thread that emphasised the value of community, self-representation and a liberation of non-art spaces. The first four volumes took place in pop-up art spaces connected to the curator’s studio between 2019 and 2020, with the intention to steadily build the platform’s reach internationally.
Gradually with international acclaim from previous unfunded projects, Still Making Art in its current form consists of yearly group exhibitions that the curator has declared to undertake on an indefinite basis.
As one of its first institutionally supported exhibitions, Still Making Art Klaipėda is a development of the original platform model. Usually consisting of mostly early-emerging artists and one or two ‘star players’ for credibility and effective transmission of the projects online, Still Making Art Klaipėda is a levelling of artists at all different stages of their career.
Each chosen work in the exhibition is concerned with the notions duration and accessibility, pertaining to the overall Still Making Art ethos, whether it be the perpetual looped dancing of Matthew Lessner, the inflationary packing sculptures of Egle Ruibyte, the tautological performative counterparts of Robertas Narkus, or the electric argon-fuelled roses of Emilija Povilanskaitė, a thread ties all these artists together, bowing a ceaseless interdependent poiesis.
When undertaking this selection the aspect of accessibility and immediacy was important to the curator, particularly with a potentially non-English speaking audience, or those with traditional views concerning the formality of art. As with many projects he undertakes, there is the intention to engage all ages, backgrounds and nationalities, in a format that is in-keeping to the bespoke traditional/progressive sensibilities of the city in which it is based.
Aaron McLaughlin is an artist and curator originally from Ireland and based in Amsterdam since 2013. In the past years, the artist has been drawn to supporting art practitioners that pertain to progressive movements, primarily through the curatorial project Still Making Art, a platform that aims to support artists in the initial and usually most turbulent stages of their career. In 2020, McLaughlin was invited as an assistant curator for the exhibition Private Song 사적인 노ᄅ at the Doosan Art Centre in Seoul, South Korea, and was a remote artist-in-residence for Sapporo Tenjinyama Art Studio, Japan, until early 2021.
Aaron McLaughlin is an artist and curator based in Amsterdam. His work is multidisciplinary, spanning several media, including curatorial and collaborative practices. Critically employing the methods and technologies we use to live, share, and give value to our lives, his most recent pieces are film-based installations that explore contemporary filmmaking techniques including virtual reality, CGI and stage direction, and incorporate an ongoing interest in writing, roleplay, sculpture, and performance.