16 January 2020

2019 Highlights and 2020 Sneak Peek


It has been an exciting year for us from SARIEV Contemporary and an even more exciting one is ahead of us! See some of our highlights from 2019 as well as a 2020 sneak peek.






We started 2019 with artist Kamen Stoyanov's solo show "!", which was part of the long weekend of the opening of Plovdiv – European Capital of Culture 2019. The exhibition year continued with Pravdoliub Ivanov's solo show called "Robots Don‘t Sweat", followed by Stefan Nikolaev's "Be Yourself No Matter What They Say" and the group show "BACKGROUND: Young Artists from Plovdiv"In the autumn we presented the solo show “(almost) Paintings” by Nedko Solakov with heretofore unshown paintings created during his student years, as well as "THE GALAXIES OF TEKLA. Drawings for book covers 1979-1989", presenting for the first time to the public the original drawings of the cult book covers created by artist Tekla Aleksieva in the period 1979-1989 in Bulgaria.




In 2019 SARIEV Gallery partnered and supported the realization of several exhibitions in Bulgaria and abroad. Among those exhibition projects were "LISTEN TO US – ARTISTIC INTELLIGENCE (Works from Art Collection Telekom)", presenting Deutsche Telekom’s prestigious collection of contemporary art for the first time in Bulgaria and curated by Nathalie Hoyos and Rainald Schumacher,  including works by SARIEV's represented artists Luchezar BoyadjievPravdoliub IvanovNedko Solakov and Martina Vacheva (4 April - 30 June 2019, various locations in Plovdiv). 
Another partnership exhibition was "Players and Pleasures" by SARIEV's artist Rada Boukova and Sirma Sarafova-Orahovac, which was presented at KVOST, Berlin (13 April - 8 June 2019). 
In September and October, at SKLAD, Plovdiv took place the show "EVN Collection: Franz Kapfer/Lazar Lyutakov/Martina Vacheva", which brought together works from the three artists exclusively for this show. It was realized at invitation by Vesselina Sarieva, Open Arts Foundation and NIGHT/Plovdiv.




2019 was a successful year for SARIEV Gallery's represented artists. Rada Boukova represented Bulgaria at the 58th Venice Biennale (together with Lazar Lyutakov). Among the highlights of 2019 were Nedko Solakov's solo show at SARIEV "(almost) Paintings" and his participations in the group shows "Twenty Years", S.M.A.K., Ghent, "Fly me to the Moon", Kunsthaus Zurich; Museum der Moderne, Salzburg, "Grand Hotel Abyss", Steirischer Herbst, Graz, "A Passion for Drawing", Albertina, Vienna, "Cosmopolis #2", Pompidou, Paris, "Solakovs", Art Gallery Hristo Tzokev, Gabrovo; Martina Vacheva had her first museum solo exhibition - "КОРЕНИ / Roots / Wurzeln", Museum Folkwang, Essen, Germany, her first participation at biennale at the 33rd Ljubljana Biennial of Graphic Arts, Ljubljana, Slovenia (curators Slavs and Tatars) which won her the Research Residency Award. Martina also participated in the group shows in Plovdiv "LISTEN TO US – ARTISTIC INTELLIGENCE (Works from Art Collection Telekom)" and "EVN Collection: Franz Kapfer/Lazar Lyutakov/Martina Vacheva", as well as her design of evn collection's Christmas card and 2020 calendarPravdoliub Ivanov's solo exhibitions "Robots Don‘t Sweat" at SARIEV and museum exhibition with catalogue "The Life of Others is Somehow Easier" at Galeria Arsenał, Bialystok, Poland. Vikenti Komitski was the artist that SARIEV chose to present at its first participation at LISTE Basel 2019Valio Tchenkov participated in the group show "Jahresgaben", Kunstverein München e.V., Kamen Stoyanov in the group show "EXHIBIT A", Mestna Galerija, Ljubljana, Lubri in "SE Center Open, 3/1/19", The SE Center for Photography, Greenville, SC, USA. Luchezar Byadjiev gave Artist Talk | Overlapping Identities (Coming Clouds and Luxo) at Loading Art Space, Diyarbakir, Turkey. Stefan Nikolaev had the solo show "Be Yourself No Matter What They Say" at SARIEV,  as well as participations at the group shows "Present" (curated by Michel Van Dyck), Musée & Jardins Van Buuren, Uccle, Belgium and "Smoke. Tobacco Stories" (curated by Vessela Nozharova), SKLAD, Plovdiv, Special Feature / Stefan Nikolaev at Public Art magazine Nо 152. Voin de Voin did performances at Gallery weekend Warsaw http://www.warsawgalleryweekend.pl/2019/en/ and ICA London.





In 2019 SARIEV Gallery participated for the third time at Art Brussels and debuted at LISTE and Art-O-Rama. At Art Brussels we took part in Discovery section with booth by our artists Martina Vacheva and Valio Tchenkov presenting works from 2017 and 2018, as well as presentation of the book "Introduction to Bulgarian Contemporary Art (1982-2015)" by Vessela Nozharova. 
For our debut at LISTE we presented an exhibition project by Vikenti Komitski, who was also invited to participate at Joinery Programme with the video "Lucky Fetish", 2015. As well as that, we had a book presentation of the catalogue "Selected Works And Random Images / Vikenti Komitski", 2019 with the artist. 
At Art-O-Rama we participated with solo show by Rada Boukova called "One and the other", pursuing a long-standing reflection she has developed with Lazar Lyutakov as part of their joint project "How We Live" for the Bulgarian Pavilion at the Venice Biennale this year.




In 2019 SARIEV Gallery launched Sariev+Markov sculpture projects - a joint initiative of the gallery and Markovstudio, which aims, through various activities (residency, educational module consisting of artist talks and lectures, workshops, open doors studio, as well as exhibitions and collaborations with public institutions) to establish a field for creating and presenting sculptural projects for the public space, as well as an environment for discussion and development of such projects.
The first edition of the initiative took place in spring-summer in Sofia with French artist Wilfrid Almendra selected as first resident artist by Daria de Beauvais, Senior Curator, Palais de Tokyo and Member of the selection committee of Sariev + Markov Artist Residency. The programme included lecture by Mme De Beauvais, artist talk and professional workshop for students and young artists by Wilfrid Almendra, a documnetary exhibition about his work during the Artist Residency, as well as exhibition of the newly created scultural work “VLZ310, later (2019)” in Vrana Park Museum, Sofia (10 September - 30 October 2019).
The second edition took place in Plovdiv in September and featured the American artist L who was selected for participation by the Los Angeles-based curator, anthropologist and founding curator of Sariev + Markov sculpture projects Aaron Moulton. The programme included the project A.S.T.R.A.L.O.R.A.C.L.E.S Interdimensional Ritual at Plovdiv Roman Stadium (13 September 2019) which was created for the festival Night/Plovdiv 2019 organized by Open Arts Foundation, lecture by Aaron Moulton and Artist talk with L. 




This year, within the framework of the gallery’s program of presenting artists just starting their professional career "BACKGROUND: Young Artists", we organized the group show "BACKGROUND: Young Artists from Plovdiv" (participants: Mitch Brezounek, Valko Chobanov, Velizar Dimchev, Dimitar Genchev, Yavor Kostadinov, Lyubomir Krastev, Dimitar Shopov, Trifon Tashev, Martina Vacheva) which presented exhibition projects by the nine artists at several locations in Plovdiv (SARIEV Gallery, Danchova house in the Old Town, Coffee&Gallery Cu29 and Artnewscafe) as well as parallel program at FLUCA – Austrian cultural pavilion and Lucky cinema.
The exhibition opening was followed by the workshop for young artists Portfolio Day (participants: Nevena Ekimova, Darena Georgieva, Sofia Grancharova, Martian Tabakov, Kalina Mavrodieva, Lyuben Malchev) held at Artnewscafe the next day.



See all our publications here 

Selected Works And Random Images

First catalogue of Vikenti Komitski, published by SARIEV Gallery

more info here


Catalogue "Open Art Files: Notes and footnotes"

Catalogue to the exhibition "Open Art Files: Notes and footnotes" (16 August – 30 September 2019, Kapana gallery, Plovdiv) 

more info here

The publication is available online here


by Open Arts Foundation in cooperation with SAREV Gallery


The project "Open Art Files: Topics, People, Spaces, Files in Bulgarian Contemporary Art", started in 2018 by Open Arts Foundation in collaboration with SARIEV Gallery that seeks to popularize Bulgarian contemporary art in Bulgaria and abroad, was continued this year. In February, we had the premiere of the website openartfiles.bg, which took place at Sofia City Art Gallery. Later in the year we held the exhibition and educational panel "Open Art Files: Notes and Footnotes"from 16 August – 30 September 2019 at Kapana gallery, Plovdiv, curated by Vera Mlechevskavideo program curated by Krassimir Terziev and Vera Mlechevska. The exhibition gathered artworks by more than 50 artists of different generations and ages, who for a short period and at different times were provoked by common intuition, by the ”zeitgeist” or driven by the possibilities of new and familiar means of expression. The educational panel included screenings, lectures, meetings with artists and curators, educational tours in Plovdiv and curatorial tours in the exhibition. In December 2019 was published the bilingual catalogue  to the exhibition of the same name. 
In the end of November in Goethe-Institut Bulgarien, Sofia was held a lecture within the Collectors’ Forum by the German collector Christian Kaspar Schwarm (founder of “Independent Collectors”, Berlin). 



In August, SARIEV Gallery announced its new identity, which was created by the Bulgarian graphic design studio PUNKT and is based on the gallery's experimental and non-conservative structure. 
It's aimed at presenting a system that communicates freely and removes the hierarchy, where the most important thing is to have the character of the gallery in its entity, rather than emphasizing a particular identity element. The result is a system that is both neutral and distinctive, whose tone is simple but attractive.
The font used for the main elements is Gabriele Fumero's Opale and for additional elements in the communication is used a font by Bulgarian designers - Attractive.



Martina Vacheva in conversation with Marie Himmerich
Sariev Contemporary's artist Martina Vacheva talks about her work, inspiration and her latest solo project "Mud" which was on view at Sariev in the end of 2018  
KubaParis, February 2019
read the interview
[in English]
Art in the public space
Conversation with Daria de Beauvais, Senior Curator, Palais de Tokyo, and Vesselina Sarieva about the role of art in public space, during De Beauvais' visit in Bulgaria at invitation of Sariev Contemporary as part of the recently launched initiative Sariev+Markov Sculpture Projects
BNT 1, Kultura.BG, March 2019
watch the video
[in Bulgarian]
8 Highlights der Art Brussels
Sariev Contemporary's booth at Art Brussels 2019 is one of the eight best booths at the fair according to Monopol magazin
Monopol, April 2019
read the article
[in German]
The Venice Questionnaire: Rada Boukova and Lazar Lyutakov
An interview with Sariev's represented artist Rada Boukova and Lazar Lyutakov, the artists presenting Bulgaria at the 58th Venice Biennale (11 May – 24 November 2019 (Press Preview 8 - 10 May 2019)) 
ArtReview, April 2019
read the interview
[in English]
The LISTE Interviews: Vesselina Sarieva
SARIEV Contemporary's founder and director Vesselina Sarieva speaks to ArtReview about the gallery's upcoming first participation at LISTE (10 - 16 June 2019)
ArtReview, May 2019
read the interview
[in English]

Roman Ruins? Sure, but Bulgaria’s Second City Offers So Much More
SARIEV Contemporary and the gallery's represented artist Martina Vacheva have been featured in New York Times' recent publication about Plovdiv and the people who are turning the city into a true capital of culture
New York Times, May 2019
read the article
[in English]
SARIEV Contemporary's booth at  the recent LISTE 2019, presenting the gallery's artist Vikenti Komitski, is among the curated selection of documentation of the art fair published by Art Viewer
Art  Viewer, June 2019
view the selection
[in English]
Stefan Nikolaev at SARIEV Contemporary
A publication about the recent exhibition "Be Yourself No Matter What They Say" of Stefan Nikolaev
at SARIEV Contemporary (17 May - 28 June 2019)
Art  Viewer, June 2019
view the publication
[in English]
Introduction to Bulgarian Contemporary Art: Vessela Nozharova Interviewed by Luchezar Boyadjiev
Sariev Gallery's represented artist Luchezar Boyadjiev interviews Vessela Nozharova, author of the book "Introduction to Bulgarian Contemporary Art (1982– 2015)", about the eponymous publication by Open Arts Foundation and Sariev Gallery
BOMB Magazine, July 2019
read the interview
[in English]
BACKGROUND: Young Artists from Plovdiv at SARIEV Contemporary, Danchova house, Coffee&Gallery Cu29, Artnewscafe, FLUCA – Austrian cultural pavilion and Lucky cinema
An article about the recent group show "BACKGROUND: Young Artists from Plovdiv" by Sariev Gallery  
Art Viewer, August 2019
read the article
[in English]
Bestes Kuratorenfutter
Sariev's participation at Art-O-Rama 2019 with the solo show "One and the other" by the gallery represented artist Rada Boukova is among the highlights of DARE magazin's Best curator feed of the art fair in Marseille
DARE magazin, Setember 2019
read the article
[in German]
"Open Art Files: Notes and footnotes" in Plovdiv
An interview with Vera Mlechevska about the group exhibtion "Open Art Files: Notes and Footnotes" by Open Arts Foundation, which was curated by her and was on view in gallery "Kapana", Plovdiv, from 16 August to 30 September 2019
Bulgarian National Television, September 2019
watch the interview
[in Bulgarian]
Sculpture in public space by Wilfrid Almendra 
A photo gallery from the exhibition VLZ310, later (2019) by Wilfrid Almendra, part the first edition of Sariev+Markov sculpture projects, which can be seen at Vrana Park Museum till 30 October 2019 
Vesti, September 2019
view the gallery
Les 12 œuvres les plus spectaculaires repérées à la FIAC
The  work "God save the hobby horse" by Sariev's artist Stefan Nikolaev presented at this year's FIAC, is listed among the 12 most spectacular works spotted at the forum, according to Vogue
Vogue, October 2019
read the article
[in French]
Nedko Solakov at SARIEV Gallery
An article about Nedko Solakov's recent solo show "(almost) Paintings" at SARIEV (6 September - 25 October 2019)
Art Viewer, October 2019
read the article
[in English]
A.S.T.R.A.L.O.R.A.C.L.E.S Interdimensional Ritual at Plovdiv Roman Stadium
An article about the project "A.S.T.R.A.L.O.R.A.C.L.E.S Interdimensional Ritual"  that took place on 13 September 2019 in Plovdiv, which was created in the frames of Sariev+Markov sculpture projects for Night/Plovdiv 2019
Art Viewer, October 2019
read the article
[in English]




In 2020, we will continue the line of presenting young artists in the beginning of their career following the politics of "BACKGROUND: Young Artists" which in 2019 was dedicated to Plovdiv. The first exhibition in February 2020 will be the solo show of Dimitar Genchev, who was among the artists presented at the aforementioned exhibition.
In Spring and Summer it will be followed by thematic curatorial exhibition, as well as solo show of SARIEV's represented artist Vikenti Komitski. In September we'll continue with thematic curatorial exhibition and the exhibition programme "Rediscovery". 
In the new year we will continue our participations in international art fairs and the overall line of popularization of Bulgarian contemporary art abroad.
2020 will hopefully give a light on our upcoming new projects and ideas.
During the summer months SARIEV Gallery will curate the exhibition program of the long-term project of Open Arts Foundation FLUCA - Austrian Cultural Pavilion
As well as that, we will continue with the activities as part of Sariev+Markov sculpture projects, the platform Introduction to Contemporary Art and the projects Open Art Files and Collectors' Forum



Next year, we'll see some ineresting exhibition projects of SARIEV's represented artists. Among them will be a retrospective exhibition of Luchezar Boyadjiev at MOMus - Museum of Contemporary Art, Thessaloniki (March - July 2020), Nedko Solakov's participation at the Second Lahore Biennale, Pakistan (26 January - 29 February 2020) and the mega show "Diversity United. Contemporary European Art. Moscow. Berlin. Paris", Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow, where Martina Vacheva will participate too. She will also participate at the group show “Crack up - Crack down”, Ujazdowski Castle, Warsaw (curators: Slavs and Tatars, co-curator: Michał Grzegorzek), Vikenti Komitski's solo show "What Goes Around Comes Around" at the cltural center E-WERK Freiburg in September, Voin de Voin's Presentation of research project  “Ana” part 1, Scholss Solitude Academie Stuttgart in March and Kamen Stoyanov & Katharina Swoboda's dual show "Alyosha and the Cat", Museum of Humour and Satire, Gabrovo (18 June - 30 August 2020).  

Furthermore, we have exciting new projects which we will announce very soon! Stay subscribed to our mailing list to receive info about upcoming fairs throughout the year.
Follow our activities on our website and in the social media FacebookInstagram and Twitter.