From 2020-2022, fifteen exceptional artists from Southeast Asia and New Zealand participated in a three-month residency program in Leipzig. The fellowship „Pacific-Leipzig“ was initiated by the Goethe-Institut network in Southeast Asia in collaboration with Leipzig International Art Programme (LIA). During the course of three years, over 600 artists applied for the open calls. A jury in Leipzig together with the Goethe Institutes in the respective countries selected the 15 winners.
In Leipzig, the successful fellows had their own artist studios at the arts and culture center Baumwollspinnerei (cotton mill). At the beginning of the 20th century the Baumwollspinnerei was the Europe’s largest cotton manufacturing plant. Today, it houses the cultural centre for one of the most exciting places for the production and exhibition of contemporary arts and culture in Europe.
The residency at the Baumwollspinnerei was professionally accompanied by the team from LIA. It allowed artists in residence to work in an inspiring cultural environment, with the opportunity to engage with local and international artists, and to connect with Leipzig‘s creative art scene and public.
The produced artworks were made accessible to interested visitors during regular open studio sessions and small exhibitions.
Pacific-Leipzig fellows also worked and exchanged with various protagonists and institutions in Leipzig and beyond. The collaborations included musicians of the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, the German Hygiene Museum and the Transparent Man in Dresden.
Excursions to other cities and important cultural sites in Germany completed the program, among which were the visits to the Bauhaus in Dessau and Weimar, the UNESCO cultural heritage city of Quedlinburg and the Tübke Panorama in Bad Frankenhausen.
Beside their own artistic practice, all participants of the Pacific-Leipzig fellowship had the opportunity to learn more about Leipzig’s long tradition of the printmaking process of etching.
At the „Atelier für Radierung Vlado und Maria Ondrej“, the fellows were guided by Maria Ondrej on the special etching techniques, such as photogravure, embossing, sugar lift etching, traditional aquatint and others. The printmaking processes were accompanied by artists from Leipzig who became a direct source for cultural exchange on a day to day basis.
The etching workshops resulted in enriching collaborations, such as those between Alba d‘Urbano (Academy of Fine Arts Leipzig) and Yadanar Win (Myanmar). In their joint work “Unkörperliche Körperlichkeit“ (incorporeal physicalness) they quoted each other on their personal exchange of being physically together in Leipzig and being separated at the same time because of the Corona pandemic.
The exchange between the Pacific region and the city of Leipzig finds its visual output in this exhibition, presented to the public for the first time.
This exhibition has been made possible by the Goethe-Institut, the German Consulate General in Ho Chi Minh City, Deutsches Haus Ho Chi Minh City, Aone Deutschland AG, Deutsch Vietnamesisches Haus Leipzig and the City of Leipzig, on the occasion of the twin city partnership between Ho Chi Minh City and Leipzig.
Authors: Wilfried Eckstein, Mpangi Otte (Goethe-Institut Vietnam) & Anna-Louise Rolland (Leipzig International Art Programme)
Goethe-Institut fellows of the Pacific-Leipzig Program 2020-2022
Yoong Chia Chang (Malaysia)
Lê Hiền Minh (Vietnam)
Yadanar Win (Myanmar)
Sam Clage (New Zeland)
Harit Srikhao (Thailand)
Haryo Hutomo (Indonesia)
Orawan Arunrak (Thailand)
Meita Meilita (Indonesia)
Wunna Aung (Myanmar)
Myat Thu (Myanmar)
Tuan Mami (Vietnam)
Nguyen Thi Thanh Mai (Vietnam)