Montescaglioso, Italy / Oreste / 2001


Wednesday 13.30. I am late as usual for lunch and running into my local supermarket to get some bread. Standing out of breath at the counter with tomatoes in one hand and a loaf of bread in the other, I see from the corner of my eye a girl walking in. For an instant I am quite sure that I’ve recognized her so I walk back in.

Two minutes later, I am standing at the same counter, with some onions I have absolutely no use for and I feel rediculous. The girl turns to me and asks: “isn’t it you?”.
She is Lindsey, a British artist I’ve met in 2001 at the artists-residency Oreste in Montescaglioso, Italy. She moved to Holland and is now living with her boyfriend, Koert, with whom I travelled together in 2001. We started catching up, and Lindsey mentioned Alenka, a Slovenian curator who was in Montescaglioso as well, whom she had met during a lecture in Rotterdam a few days ago. Lindsey again was quite surprised to learn that since 2002 I had been working in close collaboration with Oskar from Helsinki (who attended the residency as well), and had recently shown some of my work in an exhibition organised by the German artist Albert – needless to say how we met.

We chatted a little further about Paola, an Italian artist also present in Oreste, whose work Lindsey had presented in Tokyo, and we had some good laughs about Adam, a peculiar and funny artist from Hungary, with whom I shared an appartement in Finland. And not to forget the fact that Oskar had visited Edit in Budapest for a two-month residency and exhibition.
Oh, and did I mention that Antonio, who is one the contributors of this weblog, attended ‘summer camp’ a year before us? However, we met in Helsinki, through Albert of course.

We all visited Oreste freshly after graduation. We were green as grass, had no clue whatsoever and didn’t know anything or anybody, anywhere. Oreste opened a world of friends, contacts, networks and inspirations and many of us owe half of our career to this two-week party project. Therefore I’d like to take the opportunity to thank Cesare Piotroiusti, godfather of the Oreste group. One of the people who put a lot of good work in the residency and happens to be an incredible artist as well.

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