Interview with Bjorn Geldhof (PinchukArtCentre, Kyiv)
Since he began working at the PinchukArtCentre in 2009, artistic manager and curator Bjorn Geldhof’s curatorial intelligence has caught the attention of local artists and viewers. As curator of the past few annual Future Generation Art Prize exhibitions (as well as the solo shows of Candice Breitz, Damian Ortega, Olafur Eliasson, Jeff Wall, Gary Hume and Anish Kapoor, among others), Geldhof has played an important role in shaping the institution’s mode of mediating the encounter between artworks by both international and Ukrainian artists and the PAC’s vast audience. The PinchukArtCentre remains Ukraine’s most visited institution devoted exclusively to contemporary art, and so Geldhof exercises a quiet influence on the Ukrainian art community; while he sometimes participates in public panel discussions, he rarely gives interviews or publishes his artistic views in the press.
In late June 2012, Larissa Babij met with Bjorn Geldhof to talk about his work at the PAC; his views on Ukrainian contemporary artists and the local art audience; and the political implications of artistic practice in the current political climate.
Editor’s note: In the conversation, when the interviewer says, “In my own personal experience, 2010 has been really disastrous for Ukrainian culture…”, she means 2012.