Andréa Stanislav is based in New York City, and splits her practice between St.Petersburg, Russia and Bloomington, IN. Ms.Stanislav’s hybrid practice spans sculpture, immersive multimedia installation, video and public art.
I would plan to work on a new multi-channel immersive video installation at the Narva Art Residency — Learning how to Levitate (in Exile) (working title). I would plan to complete location shoots at particular location in Narva, including the theater space within the residency — paired with my personal memories of Narva and actions from 2019.
I would also plan on conducting interviews through a series of “video portraits” with a group of eighty-year old female best fiends, I met in 2019 in Kohtla- Jarve, remembering their friendship, loves, losses and survival in one place — and their sense of humor. I would include my own personal story of love and loss intermixed with the stories of then four female finds — connecting the past and present through a poetic visual and spoken narrative — and with a supernatural science fiction sensibility that would further reveal in the third act of the video.
//EXPERIENCE AT NART
My NART residency was successful in completing video location shoots in the residency’s Soviet-era theater and at selected locations around Narva. I interviewed Ukrainian refugees who were briefly staying at NART – our sharing of stories and music was a unique and valuable experience, which unexpectedly became a significant part of my project. The Kreenhomi factory also became a significant location subject. I engaged in research on the factory’s textile history with the Narva Art Gallery, resulting new kinetic fabric sculpture elements, as part of my project’s exhibition proposal.
I am fortunate to have attended with fellow resident artists – Jaako Autio and VariaLambo, whose sharing of art and camaraderie made the residency an engaging and supportive experience. There were also several residency staff I enjoyed meeting and bonding with. Dir. Johanna Rannula, brought the residency artists on a productive trip to Tallinn for a tour of EKKM and to EKA’s graduating exhibition, where we met professors and students. Johanna introduced me to Julius Lauritsch, Austrian ambassador to Estonia, during his tour of the residency. I also met curators, vocalists, and Ukrainian refugees who I remain in contact with.
Every day life was idyllic. I am a runner and went on gorgeous runs along the ‘Venice of Narva’. I researched and worked on video location shoots. Meals were enjoyed by shared cooking amongst residents, and public events introduced us to the greater Estonian arts community.
New ideas or impressions
I realized NART is the eastern center of the Estonian arts community. I also came to understand what a special and unique position Narva is in the current geopolitical state. I was taken how traditional culture is valued in Estonia. NART’s architecture never ceased to fascinate me, as I still find it mysterious — which also makes NART conducive to making art and a difficult to leave.
Most memorable moment or memory in Narva
I walked into the garden at dusk one evening, hearing birds chirping in the trees. The chirping flowed into the female voices singing Russian, Ukrainian and Estonian folk music – it seemed like a magical waking dream. The group was a local choir practicing. I ran back to my room to retrieve my video camera, upon my return, the vocalists invited me into their circle, and I spent the rest of the evening recording them as they sang for me.