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Invest Week Interview #15 Valentinas Klimašauskas

Valentinas Klimašauskas (b.1977, Kaunas, Lithuania) is a freelance curator and writer interested in the robotics of belles-lettres and the uneven distribution of the future. Recent texts include How to clone a mammoth, in three voices and with a fisherman’s exaggeration; Gertrude Stein wouldn’t pass the Turing test and others. Recent curated exhibitions include A Hat-Trick or A Theory of the Plankton; Time flies like an arrow, fruit flies like a banana; A cab. If cabinet of curiosities were a vehicle… and Thinging, just to mention a few.

© Henrik Beck

© Henrik Beck


We have conducted a Proust Questionnaire.

What is your idea of perfect happiness? As a curator, I don’t believe in the concept of happiness, especially in perfect happiness. Exhibitions and reviews can always be better. A larger audience, a better audience, whatever it means. And as a writer I read that happiness is a pretty bad reason to start writing. Paul Valéry would say that optimists are bad writers. Maurice Blanchot would answer that pessimists don’t write at all. I wonder if it also works like that in art world.

Still from A Theory of Plankton

Still from A Theory of Plankton

What is your greatest fear? Very average artists taking over art history? Getting good reviews in bad magazines? Bad reviews in good magazines? Forgetting your own opening? Not having a relationship with the youngest and oldest generations of artists?

What is the trait you most deplore in yourself? I don’t believe in the ‘self’, although, paradoxically, this sentence starts with a capital “I”.

What is the trait you most deplore in others? The more of others others include, the more I love others.

Which living person do you most admire? Hybrid persons, all kind of hybrids – bacteria, centipedes, partly dead and partly alive artists, party animals, fossils.

What is your greatest extravagance? I still have a couple of exhibition ideas I’d like to share.

What is your current state of mind? News feed.

What do you consider the most overrated virtue? Participating in biennials.

On what occasion do you lie? When I don’t consider a lie being a lie and in the art world there is no truth, only images, right?

What do you most dislike about your appearance? I have no wheels. And no tentacles.

Which living person do you most despise? I don’t despise any forms and shapes of life; however, nature can be very brutal.

What is the quality you most like in a man and woman? I don’t believe in the dualistic concept of sex and gender which is almost too easy to declare for ‘a white man’ as I have already been told.

Which words or phrases do you most overuse? “Chthonic, miasma,” David Bowie once answered similarly.

Still from A Theory of Plankton

Still from A Theory of Plankton

What or who is the greatest love of your life? Participation in a huge demonstration.

When and where were you happiest? After I finally connected to Wi-Fi a few minutes ago!

Which talent would you most like to have? Quoting Google search from memory. Or knowing everybody’s names, including usernames.

If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be? I’d like to add a wheel. Or a banner.

What do you consider your greatest achievement? Once I curated an exhibition on an asteroid.

If you were to die and come back as a person or a thing, what would it be? A museum.

Where would you most like to live? Maybe it would be nice to be yogurt bacteria in fresh milk, but then, who cares?

What is your most treasured possession? The right answer is eyes, right?

Still from A Theory of Plankton

Still from A Theory of Plankton

What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery? Wars and slavery in all their shapes and names.

What is your favourite occupation? Reading artworks, books, faces, leaves, coffee cups, clouds, etc.

Who are your favourite writers? Internet users.

Who is your hero of fiction? Your average consumer and citizen.

Which historical figure do you most identify with? The Cheshire Cat’s grin. Or Argentinean artist Alberto Greco (1931–1965) who, as early as 1962, introduced his “Live fingers,” a new form of art, as he declared, that was achieved by pointing his finger at people on the street and declaring that they were his works of art. And this was not the beginning — as early as 1954 Greco claimed that he started signing walls, streets, and bathrooms in Paris. He also claimed to have signed the whole city of Buenos Aires in 1961. However, there is no way to prove this. After he committed suicide in 1965 due to being unhappy in love, an inscription “Fin” was found on his palms. I really like how consistent Greco was in his various activities, how there was no difference between the art he was producing and the daily life he was living. I have respect for that although I have no idea if you should identify with someone doing something like this.

Who are your heroes in real life? Art critics.

How would you like to die? Unnaturally.

What is your motto? Motto Distribution.

What is your favourite journey? “The ones I take in my head“ Giorgio Armani once answered this question.

How to clone a mammoth | A cab | B and/or an Exhibition Guide In Search of Its Exhibition | The Baltic notebooks of Anthony Blunt | Vilnius Contemporary Art Centre

In aanloop naar de aanstaande Invest Week in juni presenteert Jegens & Tevens in samenwerking met Stroom Den Haag een reeks persoonlijke portretten. Jonge kunstenaars die een Pro Invest subsidie hebben ontvangen en een selecte groep (inter)nationale curatoren worden door Jegens & Tevens geïnterviewd. Het doel van de jaarlijkse Invest Week is dat de kunstenaars feedback en reflectie op het eigen werk ontvangen van een groep ervaren curatoren, critici en kunstenaars uit binnen- en buitenland. Tot aan 27 juni 2016, als de Invest Week start, komen alle deelnemende kunstenaars en curatoren hier uitgebreid aan bod. Meer informatie over de Invest Week is binnenkort te vinden via www.stroom.nl.

REAGEER