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Two artists selected for Aurora Residency 2024

Artists Jan S. Hansen and Bita Razavi have been appointed to the Aurora Residency in 2024 – a new residency, created and run by AHC, Le Bicolore – Maison du Danemark, and Fondation Fiminco.

From left: Jan S. Hansen: Quietly Sitting in Room, detail, 2023. Bita Ravazi: Dog Days Will Be Over Soon, 2019, installation view, Kunsthalle Seinäjoki. Photo courtesy: Kunsthalle Seinäjoki

Aurora Residency is a newly started three-month residency at the Fondation Fimonco in Paris, for which the first two artists have now been selected. The artists are Jan S. Hansen, who works and lives in Denmark, and Iranian-born Bita Razavi, based in Finland.

The purpose of the Aurora Residency is to promote Nordic artists’ careers and opportunities to gain visibility and expand international networks. Aurora Residency is also a sustainable project that aims to continuously experiment with social and environmental awareness in residency and exhibition practice.

The two artists have been selected on the basis of an open call and a jury composed of a representative from each of the institutions involved as well as a French curator, selected by the institutions. Below you can read the motivations for the selections:

BITA RAZAVI
The members of the Aurora residency jury were particularly impressed by Bita Razavi’s body of work, which draws its strength from the creative strategies of resistance. The resulting artistic and media forms led Bita Razavi in the footsteps of colonial-era botanical compulsion and Emilie Saal, whose complex trajectory is as much the fruit of a woman’s self-determination as well as her contribution to a fundamentally unequal society. Regarding these layers of ambiguity, the artist has produced the kinetic print sculpture ‘Kratt’, an evocation of a mythological creature presented in the Estonian pavilion at the Venice Biennale in 2022.

For her Aurora residency project, this same thread, inspired by the creative forms of resistance, led Bita Razavi to revisit her personal history and her Iranian family origins, and to address these issues to the Women, Life, Freedom Revolution underway in Iran. Her time in residence at the Fiminco Foundation will enable her to engage in conversations and encounters with representatives of the Iranian Resistance living in France. Her installation project will be based mainly on found objects, the residuals of Parisian society in all its diversity. A video and shadow and light effects will illuminate the testimonies and narratives that the artist has collected. The members of the jury have noticed in this project a renewal of the artistic forms of engagement that attracted their greatest attention.

JAN S. HANSEN
The members of the jury were struck by the subtle and singular balance between the richness of an inner life reflected in Jan S Hansen’s work, and his openness to collective issues and sharing. This balance makes his work a pivotal point between introspection and cosmic openness. His formal translation enables him to go beyond the complexity of the issues he has consciously set out to give them a sensitive form with an economy of means. His seemingly light-hearted approach to complexity by introducing the invisible and the poetic convinced the jury that he was in tune with these complex issues facing the world today. His installations engage the viewer to think, ponder, speculate and, perhaps, continue to dream. They invite us to question our presuppositions, where we are speaking from, our views and our points of view on the world, without opposing the paths of intuitive, spiritual or scientific sensitive knowledge.

His Aurora residency will enable Jan s Hansen to extend his ritual practice of drawing, particularly diagrammatic drawing, by returning to an older practice of painting, echoing the energies of the city, its pulse and fruits of his research. As co-director of a non-commercial artist-run space, Jan S Hansen will be able during the residency period to initiate and consolidate fruitful encounters and exchanges within the community of artists and art practitioners at Fiminco and in the Romainville cultural district, as well as with the Parisian and French art scenes.

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MORE ABOUT THE AURORA RESIDENCY AND THE SUSTAINABLE PROFILE
Aurora Residency 2024 is the first residency in the collaboration between AHC, Le Bicolore, and Fondation Fiminco. Once this first program is completed, feedback will be gathered from the participating artists, curator, and project partners to further the discussion on how the program can develop and continue, and how the social and environmental sustainability strategy can be taken forward.

It is hoped that this first residency will initiate a long-term collaboration between the project partners and allow for more artists and curators to participate in the program through open calls, and for French artists to also get the chance to have a residency in Denmark and work with Danish curators.

Finally, the Aurora residency is conceived as an experiment in environmentally sustainable residency-making. Environmental awareness is thus a central aspect of the project, permeating all the key steps of the program. This commitment translates not only in the implementation of environmentally friendly constraints, but also in measuring the footprint of the residency in a perspective of future improvements and incorporating sustainability at the heart of the dissemination program.

Read more about the Open Call here.

Find images of the Fondation Fiminco here.

The Aurora Residency is generously supported by the Ministry of Culture Denmark and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Denmark.

AHC : gives time, space and voices to artistic experimentation

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