July 11, 2016
Preuzeto s portala Kulturpunkt.hr, gdje je intervju originalno objavljen (06.07.2016).
Od 6. do 29. srpnja u novigradskoj Galeriji Rigo održava se multimedijalna izložba blind fields __ slijepa polja. Izložba u kojoj sudjeluje sedmočlana međunarodna grupa umjetnika predstavlja seriju radova inspiriranu svijetom slijepih s fokusom na proces istraživanja, upoznavanja, učenja i stvaranja kroz dublji unutrašnji pristup. Uoči otvorenja, razgovarali smo s autorom izložbe Danijelom Šivinjskim.
Razgovarala: Martina Domladovac
U sklopu rada blind fields istražujete stvaranje vizualnog bez osjetila vida. Kako je nastala ideja o ovom radu i koliko on zadire u polje aktivizma?
Korijen nastanka ideje rođen je u spontanoj znatiželji da kao umjetnik istražim nove dimenzije eksperimentalnosti. Kako se najčešće izražavam kroz vizualnu umjetnost, nekako me ta druga krajnost – odsustvo vizualnog – najviše privukla. Odlučio sam se tako ubaciti u ulogu slijepe osobe uskraćujući si čulo vida privremenim nošenjem poveza preko očiju na različitim poznatim i nepoznatim lokacijama. Postepenim učenjem na potpuno novom terenu, uz igru s vlastitim percepcijama kroz mnogobrojna druga čula, s vremenom me sve više privlačio taj svijet. Bilo mi je važno naučiti što više o slijepima i podijeliti to znanje s drugima u nadi da će to inspirirati pozitivne promjene. Aktivizam je počeo kroz približavanje ove teme široj javnosti i inkluziju slijepih. Bez obzira na to što smo se protekle godine najviše fokusirali na umjetničko istraživanje i stvaranje, aktivizam zapravo oduvijek osjećam kao usko povezan segment našeg rada.
Bave li se i kako slijepi umjetnici vizualnom umjetnosti i koliko je općenito dostupna kultura osobama s oštećenim vidom?
Iako to možda nije veoma čest slučaj da slijepi ili slabovidni umjetnici imaju vizualan pristup umjetnosti, uspio sam pronaći ne tako mali broj primjera grupa i pojedinaca širom svijeta koji stvaraju upravo na tom polju. Njihovi radovi su čisti dokaz neograničenosti čovjekove kreativnosti i sposobnosti da pobijedi sve životne barijere. Približavajući se temi, imao sam prilike upoznati, komunicirati i surađivati s nekoliko slijepih umjetnika. Sloboda i samostalnost pri radu ih pokreće na neprekidno pronalaženje novih inovativnih načina izražavanja, bilo da je riječ o jednoj ili kombinaciji nekoliko različitih umjetničkih disciplina.
Zapravo jako rijetko primjećujem primjere posvećenog pristupa aksesibilnosti. Šira dostupnost kulture osobama s oštećenim vidom često nije dovoljno promišljena ili zalazi u nesvjesnost o važnosti uključenja svih ljudi. Nažalost ne razmišljaju svi inkluzivno, ali srećom pojedine organizacije i institucije iznenađuju svojim naporima u pozitivnom pravcu svedostupnosti.
Kako se djela vizualne umjetnosti mogu približiti ljudima oštećena vida?
Načini približavanja vizualne ili bilo koje druge umjetnosti osobama s oštećenim vidom mogu biti veoma raznoliki. Od taktilnih 3D reprodukcija slika do onih baziranih na primjerice mapiranju različitih boja kroz specifične frekvencije zvuka. Ovo je veoma izazovno polje na kojem će uvijek biti jako puno prostora za nove ideje i pristupe.
Trenutni fokus vašeg rada uglavnom je istraživanje prirode i “divljine”. Zašto ste se odlučili baš za taj aspekt i mislite li možda na sličan način obrađivati urbane sredine kao prve prepreke s kojima se slijepi suočavaju?
Zapravo moj početak bavljenja ovom temom i jest bio u kontekstu urbane sredine. Počeo sam eksperimentirati s povezom preko očiju prvo u poznatom okruženju stana u kojem sam tada živio. Zatim sam uz asistenciju prijatelja izašao na ulice različitih gradova i istraživao slobodno kretanje, orijentaciju i pritom fotografirao to iskustvo.
S vremenom sam se donekle zasitio šumovima i nečistoćom impulsa ulice i odlučio zakoračiti u mirnije ambijente. U tom periodu sam sve intenzivnije počeo osjećati potencijal meditativnog stanja bića. Odabrao sam prirodu jer se tamo osjećam slobodnije i nekako bliže korijenu postojanja. Za razliku od gradskog okruženja, istraživanje nereligioznog duhovnog carstva – pravca koji me već neko vrijeme najviše privlači – je definitivno više izvodljivo i fokusiranije u prirodi. Grad je možda za nijansu lakše vizualizirati zbog npr. česte repeticije formi s kojima sam se ranije već susretao, dok je u prirodi sve dodatno življe i nepredvidljivije. Upravo nepredvidljivost je ono što kompletan rad čini eksperimentalnim i povezuje koncept kroz slobodne, sirove, iskrene, prepuštene i prirodne unutrašnje izražaje onoga što smo osjetili u dodiru s prirodom.
Tijekom srpnja u novigradskoj Galeriji Rigo održat će se multimedijalna izložba blind fields __ slijepa polja na kojoj će se predstaviti i drugi vizualni, glazbeni i performativni umjetnici s kojima ste surađivali. Kako je došlo do vaše suradnje i u kojoj su mjeri vaši pristupi temi povezani?
Osjećam da je ovoj temi zanimljivo i korisno pristupati sa što više strana kroz što različitije prizme. Od samog početka projekt blind fields je otvoren i javno poziva sve zainteresirane da se pridruže. Većina trenutno aktivnih umjetnika su meni bliski ljudi koji su se sasvim spontano uključili. Zahvaljujući njima projekt se pored vizualnih prirodno proširio i na druge umjetničke discipline – zvuk, glazbu, ples i performans.
Ono što sam donekle postavio kao zajedničku poveznicu, što je zapravo bila i jedina uputa pridruženim umjetnicima, je fokus na prepuštanje svojim unutrašnjim impulsima i signalima prirode u ovom posebnom stanju bića uz odsustvo čula vida. Tema izložbe je donekle i mistična jer su pojedini autori istraživali izvan pet tradicionalno prepoznatih čula, baveći se duhovnom i vizionarskom dimenzijom. Iako je koncept u potpunosti eksperimentalan, sagledavajući subjektivna otkrića i radove svih umjetnika u međusobnom kontekstu moram priznati da sam ugodno iznenađen kako su se naše kolektivne puzzle naposljetku složile.
June 9, 2016
In this article my dear friend Harshavardhan shares his experience of being my Dobogókő guide and his curiosity for switching roles and blindfolding himself afterwards. I’m deeply grateful for spontaneous ideas and initiatives such as this, especially from people who naturally feel as part of the common vision.
Harshavardhan Sreedhar: I am a visual creature. As an artist I tend to visualize everything and create a mental map of everything.
Being a guide
Guiding Danijel with his blindfold experience was a learning experience. Some things I had to keep in mind were that the blindfolded environment learning process takes some time and that trust building takes some time. Initially, the highly uneven terrain of downhill Dobogókő was a bit of a surprise for us. Danijel held my hand for guidance initially but as soon as we reached a more simpler terrain, I limited my guidance to purely sound based. Danijel learned fast and was soon walking on his own without support. Building trust was an important part of this process. I guided him with a stick where I felt the risk factor was higher.
Watching Danijel succeed with his endeavour, I decided to blindfold myself and explore the project with my body. I was a bit nervous initially that I would fall off the hill. As the world went blank, memories started to visualize themselves in my head. Dobogókő became an imaginary reality and the real world in my head was formed based on what my legs could sense. Rocks and branches formed bits and pieces of this imaginary world. As I began to get nervous, I realised that deep breathing could calm me down and also help me balance myself efficiently. I explored different walking techniques and eventually settled on moving like a frog. This was inspired by my brief training in Tai chi that I had a year ago. I felt like a martial artist in a dark forest working things out forward using his senses and occult powers. Balance, sense of direction and strong alertness were put to test in the body. Since Danijel provided good guidance, the task could be streamlined well and I was capable of approaching the process in a more orderly fashion. Orientation, risk factor and terrain information are three things that I expected from my guide to be available at all times. Another thing to note is that I had some information before the blindfold such as the fact that my barriers were in the form of rocks and branches and these were below the waist at all times. This helped me focus more on the terrain.
Removing the blindfold was an important part of the process and I intend to seek medical advice regarding this. 24 hours down the lane, I can still feel images forming in my head and this experiment proves to me that the human mind is an untrustworthy device.
Article about Danijel’s Dobogókő experience
June 7, 2016
At the beginning it was very hard to focus on anything due to a very challenging downhill pathway. Interestingly, I slightly lost the sense of gravity for a few moments, trying to figure out where is the ground. That feeling was close to being in a slippery bubble which rotated me in relation to the surrounding. This actually never happened to me before, but it also felt like there is a lot to take in from this magical highly vibrating place. When this happened we immediately stopped, refocused and continued with a slower stepping rhythm.
Shortly, I was back on track fully focused and feeling the connection with the earth below each step. From time to time I asked my guide quick questions regarding the orientation and terrain settings. As we moved forward our verbal communication naturally faded into pure dedicated silence. This helped me reach a deeper meditative state and allowed remarkably higer extrasensory capacity. As moves became smoother and I gained trust in the purest moment of presence, as well as in my guide, we agreed that from now on I can try walking alone. Liberation of movement and full independence created an extra layer of experience.
At a short break, we shared the same thought that the original idea to reach the pulsating stone (dobogókő; Ferenczy-szikla) at Rám-hegy hill is not of importance any more, but the blindfolded journey itself. Putting the focus on a journey over destination, opened even more space for sedate exploration. One of the highlights was discovery of a new topology-inspired energy-mapping blindfolded drawing style which I will definitely try at future locations.
Everything happened very naturally without saying much and I ended up moving on my own for approx. 80% of time which I never thought will be possible. Thanks to a huge support from Harshavardhan Sreedhar, my dear friend, and in this case, a guide, I felt kind of a breakthrough comparing to my previous blindfolded experiences. Dobogókő experience was a huge step and a beautiful lession for life.
Peace & Love,
Article about Harshavardhan’s Dobogókő experience
Your Danijel Šivinjski
May 6, 2016
“Change of perception is equal to change of dimension.”
—Andrea Petrović (blind fields artist)
Excerpt from Andrea’s blindfolded experience:
“It seemed that the time is passing very slow. When I entered my inner world the time has stopped. Then I actually started painting. Without knowing that in the next moment I’m going to touch the paint, I was surprised by the very first contact with it. It was cold and its structure was different in a tactile sense. At the beginning everything was unknown to me, later on, when I let it be the answers came out onto canvas.”
Her blindfolded ‘performative painting’ work will be presented at the blind fields exhibition in Gallery Rigo from 6. — 29.7.2016. (more info TBA).
March 27, 2016
Spring is here and my new series of blind fields adventures has begun. First forest location that I have chosen this year to spiritually & artistically explore blindfolded was National Park Fruška Gora, a mountain in Serbia. In this brief report I will share only fragments of this experience together with some photographs.
It is a fresh and calm Saturday morning. We are in the village of Ledinci, enjoying the walk towards the forest and slowly leaving the modern civilization behind us. At the entrance of the forest we are dedicating a small break to connect with the nature, prepare photographic equipment and put a blindfold.
What happens when I temporarily enter the world of the blind?
The inner worlds come closer and the outer start to speak another language. No matter the fact that there is no actual visual stimuli, live imagery experience is being created by a synergistic dance of different impulses from body-mind-spirit, meeting at the same vibrational field.
This was yet another confirmation that there is a lot more than only five traditionally recognized senses what I’m trying to explore on a deeper level through spiritual practice and art creation. I could see some kind of wireframes, sharp silhouettes of the real picturesque landscape forms showing me the way throughout the forest. Wherever I turned my head I could see, for example if the terrain goes up or downhill, and the orientation in space was precise. From time to time I was curious to know if those visions are connected with the physical ‘reality’, so I asked my assistant to confirm or debunk the truth of what I’m seeing. And yes, she confirmed, at least most of the time. At some peaks of this meditative state, we could communicate the bridge between the two subjective experiences of the same thing. It was for me much more than a visualization usually created (when blindfolded) from inputs such as sound, touch, smell etc., although they also participated in the whole experience.
I feel very excited to explore other locations in the next months. The result of this artistic research will be an exhibition of selected works in Gallery Rigo from July 6 – 29, 2016. More info to be announced soon, if you are interested, keep following via Newsletter, Facebook and Twitter.
Special thanks to Györe Zita and Ágnes for support, assistance and documentation.
Peace & Love,
Your Danijel Šivinjski
March 15, 2016
Danijel Šivinjski (blind fields) interviewed by Chris Gill for Talking Newspaper for Todmorden, March 2016 edition.
November 18, 2015
I am preparing for a new series of blindfolded art experiments and I would like to invite you to help me find and choose most inspiring locations for those exciting ventures. In order to discover the world and myself through other senses (not necessarily those scientifically known), to feel it on another level and create new art works during those experiences, I will explore each of chosen locations completely blindfolded in batches of 24 hours.
Art works will be based on inner feelings and signals from the Mother Nature with a tendency to be entirely created only when I’m blindfolded. To capture those connecting moments I will explore different fields – mainly photography, film, sound, painting, installation and performance. I aspire to let the experience be as natural as possible and lead my way without any planning, but with a full soul preparation and dedication.
I’m mostly but not exclusively interested in unique energetic places (such as the intersections of ley lines), and natural landscapes in general no matter how difficult they may seem at first, in sense of activities such as hiking and climbing. As a safety precaution I will have assistance from the team at all times. Some of the locations I’ve already visited, so this time I want to experience them once again inside this special (blindfolded) body-mind condition. Still, some locations remain fully intact.
Here’s the map! If you have any idea where I can perform my experiments in a wider region: Austria, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, Greece, Macedonia, Albania, Kosovo, Montenegro, Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Slovenia and Italy, please e-mail us to contact (@) blindfields (.) com, thank you from the heart.
Quick info before the next update: The exhibition will be premiered in July 2016 at Gallery Rigo & include a few other artists contributing their creations (TBA).
If you want to join or support us feel free to get in touch.
October 29, 2015
Notes on Blindness
“In 1983, after years of deteriorating vision, the writer and theologian John Hull lost the last traces of light sensation. For the next three years, he kept a diary on audiocassette of his interior world of blindness. This film is a dramatization that uses his original recordings.”
A Blind GIF Artist Visualizes His Lost Sight
“It’s an artistic expression of the confusion I go through with my vision loss. Not enough data getting sent to the brain, and it tries to fill in the blanks with false information, so you can’t trust what your eyes or brain are telling you. (….) Since the vision loss is progressive, one day Redhawk will be completely blind. In the meantime, he is making some lasting GIFs and being, whether he likes it or not, an inspiring visual artist.”
Blindfolded Girl Accurately Reads to Audience cites “Awakened Third Eye”
“A young woman named Ma Nithya Maheshwarananda amazed an audience this week by reading with a blindfold covering her eyes – a skill she says she gained by opening her third eye.”
Touchable Memories make 3D photographs for people without vision
“The social experiment project aims to increase the awareness of the endless possibilities of using technology to improve lives. Using an affordable home printer (….) the visually-impaired can re-experience images by fabricating a tangible scene of it.”
November 6, 2014
Spending days with brave guys from White Cane Road, Slavoljub Epifanic and Aleksandar Solomun, was deeply inspiring. Slavoljub is blind and together with Aleksandar he’s hitchhiking through Europe. They are making a documentary about their journey with the mission to encourage all people to live freely and enjoy life.
It is a great honor to be part of their project. We had so much fun around Budapest and learned a lot from each other. I’ve had a blindfolded walk with the white cane at the Millenáris park. Slavoljub taught me how to use VoiceOver on my laptop and phone.
That was yet another step further into the world of the blind where I keep feeling many strong emotional connections. I feel moved by our interactions.
Thank you for this beautiful exchange of spirits.
July 27, 2013
We have visited Motovun Film Festival to watch “Imagine” (2012), a movie directed by Andrzej Jakimowski. “It is a warm story about the romance of two blind people: he is a stubborn professor who comes to a Lisbon clinic for the visually impaired and tries to persuade the patients to expand their limits and drop their white canes, regardless of the danger.”
The director, lead actor and producer of the film attended the screening as well and audio commentary was provided for blind and visually impaired persons.