(United States, San Francisco, California)
Host organization: ArtEast (Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan)
USA-based artist Annie Albagli was hosted by an organization ArtEast in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. During her residency Annie was mostly focused around the Trash Festival. Before arriving, she was researching the Bishkek dump, some of its history, and current impact. She came to understand that the dump is always on fire because of the chemical reactions taking place deep within it and as a result wanted to focus on the air quality/air pollution that affects local residents. The project she undertook there was interviewing residents around objects they discarded or lost to pay homage to the role they play in our lives and what they may symbolize to or about us, in hopes of looking at this pollution with a new perspective. This subject created interesting pathways to talk about Kyrgyz and Soviet histories, environmental issues, and how these subjects inform one’s contemporary relationships to things.
These interviews along with field recordings from the landscape around the dump became a base for a new video work which Annie is currently working at in San Francisco, where she is based. At the Trash Festival a draft of the video with the sound work was shown in a small room with many pillows that Annie made from reused materials or felted pillowcases to create a space where people could get cosy and lie down.
Annie Albagli is a multimedia artist whose work has been shown at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, the Corcoran Gallery of Art, the Art Museum of the Americas, High Desert Test Sites HQ, and Fort Mason Center for the Arts, among other venues. Her videos have been screened at Artist Television Access Network, the Tate Modern as part of the Imagined Biennials project, and most recently at the documentary film festival, ZWICKL. Albagli is currently an Affiliate Artist in Residence at the Headlands Center for the Arts.