Daniel Bozhkov‘s project, Institute for Higher Listening: Search for a Friendly Sparrow and Other Birds of Prey was created for his residency at Bunkier Sztuki, Krakow, Poland as part of Art in General’s European Residency Exchange Program.
Bozhkov describes the project, and its three main components as follows:
This project grew out of Krakow, utilizing the rich historical and contemporary realities of the city as a conceptual matrix and platform for observation of more universal phenomena. The work is not as much site-specific as site-generative. My research and daily living in the city of Krakow became a blueprint for this project and for future work to come. Based on this context the work has formed into three chapters that are interrelated but can further develop and continue to exist independently from each other.
Institute for Higher Listening
It started with building a wooden cabin on the roof of Bunkier Sztuki. The position of the cabin allowed close observation of the birds living in the large 200-year old chestnut tree adjacent to the gallery building, and also gave an unexpected view of the human life down bellow. For the observation of the birds, I collaborated with Dr. Kazimierz Walasz of the Department of Zoopsychology of the Jagelonian University and one of the main authorities on birds in Poland. The cabin was visited by a number of people and became a great place for conversations, for concentration and research. In the peaceful environment on the roof, almost inside the green canopy, one thinks more clearly and spaciously about the world down bellow. The Institute for Higher Listening became something of a working model for how to create a continuous conversation, and I am hoping to develop it for other locations.
New Orator Kiosk
The kiosk is a cross-section between some early 20th century propaganda kiosks designed by the Russian Constructivists and advertisement booths, which I saw in Krakow supermarkets. It was used as a moving platform to continue the conversations started at the Institute for Higher Listening, beyond the site on the roof on the streets of Krakow. New Orator Kiosk was also used to present the newly designed Solar Wok on Krakow’s main square.
The Solar Wok
I collaborated with Professor Pyotr Bozyk from the Design Department of the Academy of Fine Arts in Krakow, and we made a working prototype of a lid for the traditional Chinese wok. The concave transparent lid turns a liter of water into a lens, which makes the wok suitable for solar cooking. I successfully cooked small dishes of spring potatoes, tomatoes, zucchini, olive oil, parsley and dill, on the roof of the cabin. The time for cooking the meals was 4 to 6 hours, and I expect that most of the nutrients in the food were preserved by the slow heat.
This residency and exhibition are part of Art in General’s Eastern European Residency Exchange (EERE) gives artists an opportunity to create a new work in a new context, and to meet and interact with art communities in Eastern Europe and New York City. Daniel Bozhkov was nominated by Art in General to the Bunkier Sztuki Gallery in Krakow, Poland.