At 6.30pm on Thursday 8th December, artist Ingrīda Pičukāne will be performing and commencing work on her mural "Red River" which will be formally completed on 2nd February, at the Latvian Centre for Contemporary Art’s Office Gallery. Visitors are invited to regularly visit the LCCA Office Gallery to observe the creation process for the mural.
The Red River mural will be created at the LCCA Office Gallery by using the successive tales method, a common art form from the Middle Ages, which has been used in many of Ingrīda Pičukāne’s drawings. The artist’s story is personified by an image which goes through various stages of the menstrual cycle – pre-menstrual syndrome, strong pain during menstruation and the subsequent relief and joy of existence, as such, on the conclusion of menstruation. “In the story, which is interwoven through the painting, I wish to show my personal experience, and feelings which are associated with menstruation. Special days, those days, the red days, the women’s days – these are many of the descriptions for menstruation, a physiological process which affects women every month. In my opinion, this continues to be a forbidden topic in Latvia – there is little discussion, and not much is written about menstruation. It is perceived as something which belongs only to the world of women, becoming a silenced part of women’s lives. But this physical experience is very significant, not just in my life, but also in the lives of other women, and, in my opinion, it is important to discuss these experiences, to talk about them and to share them. I have an inherent sense of social justice, and feminism is one of the aspects which characterizes my works,” comments Ingrīda Pičukāne on the choice of the topic.
On Thursday 2nd February 2017, the opening of the Samanta alternative magazine or zine will also be taking place. This is a limited release magazine which has been put out by Ingrīda Pičukāne in collaboration with a number of illustrators, photographers and authors. The zine has a feminist slant, and is dedicated to the body shaming theme.
Ingrīda Pičukāne attained Master’s degrees at the Estonian Academy of Arts’ Animation Department and at the Art Academy of Latvia’s Department of Visual Communication, and studied painting at the Janis Rozentāls Art High School in Rīga. She has created illustrations for the Liels un mazs Publishing House’s children’s books Noslēpums (author: Jāzeps Osmanis) and Muzejā iespīd Mēness jeb Tobiass and draugi sargā Rīgas vēsturi (author: Juris Zvirgzdiņš). She was the design author for Jana Kukaine’s book Daiļās mātes (publisher: Neputns, 2016). Ingrīda Pičukāne has participated in the Survival Kit Contemporary Art Festival on many occasions, and the comics that she has drawn are published regularly in the Š! Baltic comics magazine, and have also been included in exhibitions of Latvian comics internationally.
The creation of Ingrīda Pičukāne’s exhibition and the publication of the magazine has been supported by the State Culture Capital Foundation, the Rīga City Council, Dardedze Hologrāfija and Arctic Paper.