A project built on reactions in which art does not play the role of “caressing” souls and “delighting” eyes, a project which apparently does not have a “purpose” is shaking up a peaceful, small town. Muian Street Art, having started in 2012, is concluding – in the same open manner it started – in 2015 with a “Black Circus”, accompanied by author’s firm acknowledgement and the opening of new possibilities.
The stencil which was applied on the walls of Oradea, a self-portrait, brought about a scandal in the media, controversies on what art is and what it is not, on what it should and should not do. Without any conclusions or judgement, the project was “produced” – not “implemented” – as a continuous endeavour and process. Being perceived and conceived as paradoxical and contradictory, operating without an object or product, yet having a pretense and documental instrumentation, Muian tackles the crossroad of private and public space and it becomes remarkable through action – a quite unspecific action for art, especially in a small town, a type of art which does not start reactions, but seeks them out, absorbing and converting them to constituent elements through proximity.
Starting as a “self-denunciation” and labeled as an act of vandalism, the stencil transformed into a tattoo and, after removal and preservation, it was relocated into the gallery as an installation-object, thus rendering the borders between public and private blurred and indecisive. The assertiveness and violence of the endeavour continue to bring controversies- art as a weapon, art as retort, art as challenge, art as politics (as an act political, jnot an attribute). The reactions have been and are disproportionate because this is not a project for the public, but rather one made via the public, since the public is not accustomed to an active artistic, dynamic and offensive endeavour. The public is not accustomed to being given an answer from the mirror. Despite having been associated with Dumitru Gorzo’s pink “cocoons” or compared to Banksy’s “acts of vandalism”, Muian stands out from both in several directions – not wanting to “demonstrate” the unreceptiveness of the public, but using it at a higher level; not “protesting” against anything, it does not have a universal social “cause” it fights for and it does not contradict it`s manyfold interpretations. ”Demonstrating” something or anything) depends entirely on its “actors”. This demonstrates that art can be a weapon, that the same methods and goals used by the media or society can be used, hijacked, distorted, bent, appropriated.
Muian may very well be considered as the project of a whole town, no matter how renegated, controversial, artistic or valid it might be. The press, the artistic scene, community in general, the authorities – with their ”representatives become ”actors ” in the Circus – have no preordained roles, but create them as they go – with or without the acknowledgement thereof. The author – certainly – acknowledges the whole endeavour. The curator acknowledges supporting the project and her role – a supporting one – therein. Acknowledgement is yet another direction of development and a characteristic of the artistic act, yet seems alien to the small-town public.
“Muian Street-Art” and its consequence- “The Black Circus” cannot be closed, “concluded” – a s threatening as this may sound.