Art East is a non-governmental, non-profit organization established by Kyrgyzstan freelance artists (Gulnara Kasamalieva and Muratbek Djoumaliev) in 2002. The principle of the organization is based on free membership. Art East was established to address the lack of quality education and infrastructure in the visual arts which occurred in the decade after the fall of the Soviet system. Through its activities it wants to create possibilities for a new generation of artists and create a public for contemporary art. The general mission of the organization is to strengthen the role of contemporary arts as the integral constituent of a harmonious development of civil society in Kyrgyzstan and to support artists to be able to create artworks that are free of ideological and commercial pressure.
In the last two years Art East has established itself as a constant meeting point where artists can come to work, discuss and use the media-lab and documentation facilities. Besides functioning as a meeting point it has a constant activity program of 1. national and international exhibitions and 2. educational lectures and workshops for artists and art historians on contemporary art.
Art East is very innovative in their work and it wants to give young people the possibility to get acquainted with contemporary visual art and to choose values of contemporary life.
Hivos supports this organisation because Art East is contributing significantly to the creation of a young generation of contemporary artists and with that has facilitated the participation of Kyrgyzstan in the growing visual arts scene of central-Asia and its internationalization. Art East is one of the few organizations that addresses the fairly non-existence of a public for contemporary arts in Central-Asia.
Art East summer school will take place in july 2009 in Kyrgyzstan. The theme will be 'the practical implementation of site specific work', and will be organised in collaboration with Cascoland artists. The main objective is for young Kyrgyz artists to experience the functioning of art in the public domain through actual multi disciplinary interventions in actual locations with actual audience participation.
The summerschool will consist of:
The Hivos/DOEN Arts Collaboratory support will make it possible for local artists/students to participate in the summer school. The project fits within the Arts Collaboratory knowledge sharing theme 'pedagogical art practices'. The participation of Dutch artists (the Cascoland part of the project) is made available through the Mondriaan foundation in the framework of Arts Collaboratory.