Fragments of memory. Bucharest-Pompeii-London

Ioana Marinescu, Smaranda Găbudeanu and Iulia Mărăcine

Beaconsfield 22 Newport St, London SE11 6AY

Exhibition: 22 July-12 August 2023

Wednesday-Sunday 12:00-17:00

Opening: Friday 21 July 2023, 18:00

Performance: Friday 21 July, 19:00 / Saturday 22 July, 15:00

Beaconsfield Art Space in London (UK) announces the artist residency and exhibition PAST PRESENT. Fragments of memory: Bucharest-Pompeii-London. PAST PRESENT is an interdisciplinary project that addresses the role of archives and cultural memory through a series of performative actions and audio-visual installations.

Conceived by Ioana Marinescu (architect, visual artist) during a PhD research, the project was further developed together with Smaranda Găbudeanu (choreographer, founder PETEC) and Iulia Mărăcine (performer, co-founder Ludic Collective).

At Beaconsfield, the core team will be joined by director Laurențiu Calciu, performers Andreea David, Hennie Lee, Eliza Trefaș, actress Katia Pascariu, choreographer Hanna Gillgren, playwright Phoebe von Held, architect Thomas Goodey and sound designers Doru Apreotesei and David Crawforth.

In PAST PRESENT. Fragments of memory: Bucharest-Pompeii-London, the destruction of the ancient city of Pompeii, caused by the eruption of Vesuvius in 79 AD, and the disappearance of Uranus Hill in Bucharest in the 1980s, on the site of which the Casa Poporului was built, are followed from subjective perspectives. The Beaconsfield art space is itself in a building with a complicated history: a former school for disadvantaged children, partly demolished with the widening of the adjacent railway. Past spaces, objects and stories are brought into the present. Their reconfiguration produces new experiences, which in turn become new archival sources.

PAST PRESENT proposes a balancing act between forgetting and remembering, erasing and reconfiguring. What remains when there is seemingly nothing left? What is the potential of a somatic and affective exploration to generate new relations to a traumatic historical past?

Over the course of the three-week residency, the artistic team develops a performance and audio-visual installation that combines Beaconsfield’s artistic explorations with material from the existing archive.

The exhibition PAST PRESENT. Fragments of memory: Bucharest-Pompeii-London at Beaconsfield (22 Newport Street | Vauxhall | London | SE11 6AY) can be visited from 22 July to 12 August, Wednesday to Sunday 12:00 – 17:00.


Friday 21 July, 7pm

Saturday 22 July, 15:00

Ancillary events:

Wednesday 19 July, 10am-5pm Seminar: Dreams and Guilt. Exhibiting counter-narratives.

Sunday 24 September, 18.00-21.00. Past Present – research laboratory: CNDB, Bd Mărășești 80-82, Bucharest.

Ioana Marinescu, architect and photographer, works with large-scale images in public spaces, with projections and performative actions. In her PhD thesis at Slade School of Fine Art, University of College London, Ioana focused on the activation of archival images in urban contexts and in relation to the body. She has taught at Greenwich and Kingston Universities. Recent exhibitions at Spațiul de Artă Contemporană Bucharest, Kunsthalle Exnergasse Vienna, Helsinki Contemporary, Architectural Association London and Swiss Architecture Museum Basel.

Smaranda Găbudeanu is an interdisciplinary artist and founder of PETEC. Her work reflects her studies in puppetry and contemporary dance. As an actress, performer and choreographer, Smaranda has participated in numerous productions on the stage of the National Dance Centre and has collaborated with various public theatres, independent companies and contemporary art museums. Her growing interest in the visual arts and film led her to pursue a Master’s degree in Image Theory and Practice at CESI.

Iulia Mărăcine is a performer and co-founder of Ludic Collective, collaborating with visual artists, choreographers, musicians, theatre and film directors. Iulia creates and organizes participatory performances, audio-visual installations and somatic workshops in art galleries, theatres and schools. She has presented work and performed in venues such as Battersea Arts Centre; 13Festivalen, Goteborg; KyivDanceResidency; Cloud@Danslab, Den Haag; Seoul Dance Centre; Geumgang Nature Art Biennale, WASP, CNDB, The Institute, MNAC, Art Safari, Opéra National de Paris;

PAST PRESENT. Fragments of memory: Bucharest-Pompeii-London is commissioned by Beaconsfield and produced with PETEC. Established in 1994, Beaconsfield is a laboratory space dedicated to the exploration and evolution of experimental art, encouraging risk and openness to new kinds of art and audiences. PETEC is an interdisciplinary platform for production, research and education in contemporary performing arts.

Partners: H2DANCE, CNDB (National Dance Centre Bucharest), /SAC @Malmaison (Contemporary Art Space), Uranus Quarter, CESI (Centre of Excellence in Image Studies), Radio Romania Cultural, Igloo.

Thanks to: MiC – Pompeii Archaeological Park, Uranus Neighbourhood Community.

This project is co-financed by the Romanian Cultural Institute, through the Cantemir Programme – a funding programme for cultural projects for the international environment. The Romanian Cultural Institute is not responsible for the content of the project or how the results of the project may be used. These are entirely the responsibility of the grantee.

Project Past Present. Moving archives is co-financed by the National Cultural Fund Administration. The project does not necessarily represent the position of the National Cultural Fund Administration. AFCN is not responsible for the content of the project or how the results of the programme may be used. These are entirely the responsibility of the grantee.

PR and media communication contact

RO: Aura Petrașcu | | +40722 622 925.

UK: Alison Wright PR | | +44 (0)7814 796930