Kalin Serapionov

Kalin Serapionov was born in 1967 in Vratsa, Bulgaria, lives and works in Sofia. He graduated from the National Academy of Art in Sofia. His works have been exhibited in Hilger Contemporary, Vienna (2004), Ata Center/ICA – Sofia (2005), LCB Depot, Leicester, UK (2008), Neon Campobase, Bologna (2010), Olivier Boissiere/Un Cabinet d'Amateur, Sofia (2012, 2013). He has participated in Bulgariaavantgarde, Künstlerwerkstatt Lothringerstrasse, Munich (1998), After the Wall: Art and culture in post-communist Europe, Moderna Museet, Stockholm (1999), Manifesta 4, Frankfurt/Main (2002), Blood & Honey. Future’s in the Balkans, Essl Collection, Vienna (2003), In the Gorges of the Balkans, Kunsthalle Fridericianum, Kassel (2003), Neither a White Cube, nor a Black Box. History in Present Tense, Sofia Art Gallery, Sofia (2006), Heterotopias, Thessaloniki Biennale of Contemporary Art (2007), Zero Gravity, Center for Contemporary Art, Plovdiv (2008), Sounds & Visions. Artists’ Films and Videos from Europe, Tel Aviv Museum of Contemporary Art (2009), Techniques, ICA Gallery, Sofia (2009), Indefinite Destinations, DEPO Istanbul (2010), Roaming Images, Macedonian Museum of Contemporary Art, Thessaloniki (2011), Site Inspection, Ludwig Museum, Budapest (2011), Sofia Contemporary, International Festival of Contemporary Art (2012), On the Suspence or How to Hide a Bomb Under the Table, Vaska Emanouilova Gallery, Sofia (2013). He is a member of the Institute of Contemporary Art – Sofia.


Kalin Serapionov has met with early recognition in the middle of the 90s. He ought it to an important exhibition of his first works at the Soros Art Center in Sofia and to the fact that it struck the eminent and provocative art critic Pierre Restany who wrote in the famous magazine Domus that Serapionov’s works belonged to “relational aesthetics”, whatever it means…

Serapionov belongs to the generation of “the change”. However the artist never indulged in some search for national identity or local art traditions. Nor did he ever tried to “catch up with the Americans” as the song said. He is part of the global village, having travelled to places as different as Berkeley and Sharja, Zurich and Bologna, Leicester and Firenze…He has developed along the years a consistent and original body of works which address a variety of topics relating to the real world of to-day, or to put it shortly to the banal as phenomenon.

Serapionov examines the urban scene, vehicles and moving shadows. He animates daily life objects (gives them a soul?). He proceeds at surveys with questions touching the generic, about hope or difference for instance, for which he receives perfect conventional answers, universal clichés. He registers collective behaviors on the verge of gregarian. He brings the cosmos to familiar scenes…

All this with a sense of restrain, a soft irony with the tongue in the cheek, a cool distance, more sympathetic than cruel, that might characterize his work.

Serapionov makes use of the technique of to-day, video, but also photography and computer aided imagery. He masters them without looking too virtuoso (which he is!). The work benefits from this know-how: it makes it the more fluid, relaxed, natural.