Artist Talk: Marta Dyczkowska
Shut The Front Door video and photography installation.
Reflecting on the loss of cultural spaces within Belfast city centre, Maria Dyczkowska has created a body of work combining personal photographic documentation gathered over the years with historical footage. Serving as an archive of steadily disappearing cultural spaces in the city centre, she will discuss and present this work as a video and photography installation. Commissioned by Second Collective.
In the artist’s words
Originally from Poland, I relocated to Belfast from London in 2009 to start a family. Working predominantly in photography, video, performance and installation, my work circulates around memory and material culture. For over a decade I have been watching Belfast changing at a rapid pace, especially around urban planning, regenerating of the City Centre and exclusion of the Art Sector in long term planning. Since 2015, with the demolition of Orpheus things took on a new turn, we have witnessed the demolition of the Mandela Hall building and The Warzone Centre. Some of the galleries such as Platform Arts and other collectives have been driven away from the city centre moving East. The new phenomenon of retail space being used by artists and galleries seems omnipresent. However, are we really bringing the art to a wider audience or is art becoming commodification as higher education has? And where does that leave the future of the local community of East Belfast?
About the artist:
Marta Dyczkowska is a Belfast-based multidisciplinary artist, born in Poland in 1980. Dyczkowska graduated from Ulster University Fine Art (Lens and Sculpture) in 2018 where she won the Graduate Award at Platform Arts in the form of a six month residency and a solo show.
Marta is also a winner of Artist Moving Image NI Award and a review of her work was published by CIRCA ART Magazine. In 2018/2019 she was an Artist in Residence at Belfast School of Art and until January 2020 held a studio at Flax Artist Studios. She was recently shortlisted for the Open Call submission at Highlanes Gallery, Drogheda and was also awarded Individual Artist Funding by Arts Council NI. Marta has exhibited both nationally and internationally.
About Second Collective:
Established in 2017 by Cathy Scullion and Sinéad O’Neill-Nicholl, Second Collective is an organisation dedicated to supporting mature female artists by providing paid exhibition opportunities, offering practical and mentoring support to these artists and by promoting learning opportunities and skill sharing opportunities for women in the fine art sector and beyond. We value the contribution of artistic practice to the wider community and this is reflected in our commitment to ensuring that the artists we work with benefit from both financial remuneration and the practical support required to further their creative practice.
Second Collective are embarking on a long-term project which will form an ongoing artistic conversation between mature, female artists in the early stages of their art careers. We intend to provide professional development support, in the form of:
- short term residencies and access to studio space
- physical resources (access to gallery space, dance studio, Belfast Tool Library)
- mentoring and research sessions
- curation of solo exhibition and corresponding events, e.g. artist talk/workshop
- event organisation and promotion as well as
- practical skills and equipment (such as video, audio and lighting installation)
that will result in paid exhibition and learning opportunities for women in this particular category.
These exhibitions will also provide opportunities for the chosen artist and the wider artistic, female community to participate in events, such as artist talks and workshops with a view to engaging women’s groups from the wider community that experience difficulty in accessing the arts.
Our main focus will be to engage with women both locally, nationally and internationally who are experiencing a variety of support needs as mature women in the early stages of an art career; this can include but is not limited to:
- lack of studio space
- financial need
- access to support (including funding)
- lack of resources
- personal circumstances
- language and cultural barriers
- lack of confidence/experience in self-promotion.
Marta Dyczkowska will be the first artist to participate in the project.