română/ bucurești/ cluj/ iași/ sibiu/

When Magical Thinking Is Not Enough, but It’s All You’ve Got for the Moment

A sort of summing-up of the year 2017 for București

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2017 was a year that we developed under the sign of magical thinking. It ain’t over till it’s over, nu mor caii când vor câinii, che sera sera, were some of the words that kept coming back in our conversations. Rumours circulated and reproduced as fake news, because it’s easier to listen to a piece of bad news than to ask how it can be prevented. It was proven once again that sticking together and trusting what we were doing are good strategies, functioning on long term. Well, as long as it’s possible in a political and economic situation in which internally only petty interests are prioritized, and externally you are always caught in the same colonial relations. We cannot close this year without pointing to a few moments that were situated against the logic of obedience – towards fate, towards bad news, towards the complicated agendas of those who apparently ensure your survival.

There were the months during which we prepared the exhibition The Veil of Peace and the weeks when it was open, an exhibition in which we talked about the daily peace, solidarity, diversity, joy and bread.

Then there was the enthusiasm of imagining other types of art collections are possible, in which the producers are the collectors, thus being the direct beneficiaries of their own work.

And there was also the apparently minor moment of a school exercise of the students from the Architecture University, concluded with an exhibition that presented us with a possible future, different from the one we are confronted with every day.

Through all these projects we refused a precarious present, dominated by uncertainty, frustration, individualism and lack of horizon, taking refuge in an optimist, collective and public imaginary – which has actually already been partially realized in the recent past, and in more functional contexts, it is part of reality.

It was also a year that WOULDN’T HAVE BEEN POSSIBLE without the involvement, commitment, support, trust, work or kindness of some people to whom we are profoundly grateful: Edi Constantin, Athena Dumitriu, Valentin Florian Niculae, Simion Constantin, membrii Grădinii Tranzit, Cristina Zanfirescu, Mădălin Geană, Dan Perjovschi, Iulia Popovici, Marian Ivan, Vlad Basalici, Alexandra Pirici, Tim Nădășan, Marius Babias, Vasile Leac, Bogdan Stănescu, Anca Benera and Arnold Estefan, Vilmos Koter, Daria Ghiu, Irina Bucan, Anna Smolak, Roxana Gibescu, Jimena Mendoza, Ștefan Ghenciulescu;
without the collaboration and exchange of ideas and projects with: Ovidiu Țichindeleanu, Igor Mocanu, Vlad Morariu, Judit Angel (, Frantisek Zachoval (Czech Centre Bucharest), Dana Andrei and Sorin Popescu (Corner. Football + society), Claudiu Cobilanschi;
without the participation of the artists (and not only artists) with whom we worked this year, for exhibitions, presentations and other events: Nicoleta Esinencu, Katharina Koch, h.arta, Christiane Erharter, Ana Bazac, Nicolae Zamfir, Pavel Brăila, Mihaela Ioana Georgescu, Charles Esche, Anetta Mona Chişa & Lucia Tkáčová, Simona & Ramona, Metehan Özkan, Yuri Leiderman, Crina Mureșanu, Sașa-Liviu Stoianovici, Dan Mihălțianu, Monotremu, Olivia Mihălțianu and Stoyan Dechev, and others.
The most special thanks are going to Heide Wihrheim, who did for us more than we even know.
Not least, we thank to our tranzit .ro colleagues, Andi Gavril, Livia Pancu, Attila Tordai, Lia Perjovschi, Cosmin Grădinariu, as well as to the colleagues, with whom we went through several moments on the edge. So that the exhibition we are closing the year with, Shadoof (i.e. balance, water level, divide, indecision, swing, danger, edge) of the artist Kiki Mihuță, comes in the same spirit of magical thinking, to underline our own questions about the balance between one’s personal weights and the public responsibility, between firmness and frailty, between anchoring and rise.
We are waiting for you next year too at București, on 44 Gazelei Str., maybe with less magic and more pragmatism, but still with the open gate and hearts.
Raluca Voinea și Iuliana Dumitru

Cats in the Tranzit Garden. Photo: Valentin Florian Niculae