Open Call event: Don’t look back”

Applications: until 5 February 2022

Events

Open Call: „Don't look back”

Applications for the Wrocław 2022 Drawing Triennial are now being accepted! The slogan of this year's edition is "Don't look back". We are waiting for your ideas at: opencall@trwro.pl.

The title of next year's Drawing Triennial, "Don't look back", leads us through a number of references and associations: it directs us towards a (better) future by rejecting the past, but also – perversely – it returns our gaze to the past, in opposition to or because of a lack of a living relationship with the current reality.

“Don’t look back” is not only good advice for life, but it is also a recommendation and a clear instruction. It concerns personal histories as well as the histories of nations or even entire cultures. When Lot's wife looks back, through her disobedience, but also in a failed attempt to accentuate her subjectivity, she turns into a pillar of salt. When Orpheus looks back, he loses the woman he loves. In one of the Slavic legends, the fate of being turned into a boulder awaits those who seek the end of the world and who doubt their goal. Looking back is thus a moment of hesitation, a testimony of doubt, an omission whose probable consequence will be the loss of one’s goal.

The call not to look back is a very contemporary slogan. If you listen to its sound, you can hear the rough creak of thousands of shoes scurrying through city streets or the corridors of corporate buildings and offices. Their rush contrasts with the laborious shuffling of the feet of people trying to make it to the end of the day. The sensitive ear can hear in it the footsteps of builders and demolishers and it can also recognise the distinctive, distant reverberation of a marching step and the chaotic sounds coming from those running from something or somewhere. "Don't look back" " is finally advice not only for the unfortunate in love, but also a strong voice of those who abandon someone, leaving them to their own fate.

Now we find ourselves in an interesting, difficult, perhaps pivotal moment for the world. With the experiences brought to both individuals and society by the last pandemic, we are turning towards the unknown, aware of the inevitability of a moral, social, economic, political, climatic and technological breakthrough. Crossing over to the other side, we consider what to keep and what to leave behind, what to treat as a ballast of unnecessary illusions and what to consider priceless. We want to forget everything unnecessary and keep in our minds only what may be useful for the journey ahead.

By drawing plans and creating maps, action plans are prepared, strategies are developed and decisions are made. The call "Don't look back" seems to lead the hand of a draughtsman to make decisive lines, marking the boundaries of forms established in a hitherto unknown way. The irreversibility of the gesture of leaving a mark on the plane obliges. It cannot be undone.

The OPEN CALL for the Wrocław Drawing Triennial 2022 is addressed to all artists, regardless of their age or education, for whom drawing is an important means of expression. The aim of the organisers is to present valuable and innovative activities which will represent the current state of creative research in this field. A wide range of formal proposals are expected, either by relating to the concepts signalled by the title or by taking up a theme which is in opposition to it.

Entries may include works created on paper using classical drawing tools, as well as works made using other techniques, which represent drawing thinking in its broadest sense. The organisers are open to proposals in the form of drawings on flat surfaces, as well as drawing objects, installations, interactive and ephemeral works, video as well as performance. The organisers also invite animation artists to take part in the current edition of the competition by creating a separate space to present their work and funding a special prize.

For more than 50 years, the organisers of the Drawing Triennial have been raising the same issue: how do contemporary artists differ from their predecessors? How do they use drawing and how do they define it? We hope that the next edition of the Triennial will highlight the transformations that have taken place in this field in recent years.

Most important information:

  • applications: until 5 February 2022
  • title/leading theme: "Don't look back"
  • contact address: opencall@trwro.pl
  • venue: works will be presented in the Wrocław Contemporary Museum
  • date of Wrocław Drawing Triennial 2022: 7.04-23.06.2022
  • there will be prizes for this competition including: Grand Prix / Wroclaw's President Award of 10000 PLN