Periferic 8 - Art as Gift

Periferic initiated in 1997 by the Romanian artist Matei Bejenaru started as a performance festival, which organically developed into an international art biennial organized in Iasi, the second university city in Romania.

Periferic 8

The 8th edition of Periferic Biennial for Contemporary Art attempts to re-address the question regarding the conditions and possibilities for producing art events in Romania, in the new situation created by the recent economical developments. The event proposes self-repositioning and the involvement of different layers of public in order to grant a dynamic and democratic access to contemporary art events.

Concept – Art as Gift

The concept of the biennial proposes an alternative model of exchange and raises the question ‘can art be regarded as a gift?’. While Periferic Biennials have always challenged the market-based mechanisms of contemporary art, Periferic 8 directly analyzes the speculative methods that influence the realization and social value of art. The social practice of gift-giving in an everyday sense is experienced as a positive gesture, since everybody enjoys receiving and giving gifts. The exchange can be mutual, but it reflects a complex system of different motivations: power relations, dependence, as well as desire for prestige. Gift-giving is also used as a metaphor for describing the economics of art from creation/ production through sharing/distribution to reception/consumption. Periferic 8 deals with the question how the values and commodities of art are created, which are in transaction on the intellectual and commercial art market. The two end poles of the survey are art strongly connected to the market and being commercialized and gift economies suggesting alternative economic models.

Periferic 8 wishes to play the role of a mediator, thus fortifying the dialogue between various cultural fields. On the one hand it presents alternative models of education by activating the already specialized audience, artists, art critics and theoreticians, on the other hand it involves other segments of local intellectuals and people interested in the processes of reception and mediation. The project seeks to strengthen local cultural consciousness in order to form a dynamic civil community that feels responsible for its own context and suggests that contemporary art is a transdisciplinary field where social and political issues that affect a wide range of people can be discussed.

Projects and Participants

Curated by Dora Hegyi (project leader of tranzit. hu/ Budapest, Hungary)
Organized by the Vector Association (Iasi/Romania)
Main partner: Banca Comerciala Romana

Markus Bader / Raumlabor Berlin (DE); Joseph Beuys (DE); Johanna Billing (SE); cARTier / Vector Association (RO); CCCK – Center for Communication and Context Kyiv / Ingela Johansson (SE), Inga Zimprich (DE) with Sonke Hallmann (DE); Stefan Constantinescu (SE/RO); Guillaume Desanges (FR); Veaceslav Druta (MD/FR); Roza El-Hassan (HU); Miklos Erdely (HU); Tatiana Fiodorova (MD); Dora Garcia (ES); Felix Gonzalez-Torres (USA); Institute for Wishful Thinking / Maureen Connor, Gregory Sholette (USA); Christian Jankowski (DE); Daniel Knorr (DE); KUNST= KAPITAL (GL); Yuri Leiderman (RU); Little Warsaw / Andras Galik, Balint Havas (HU); Aniko Lorant (HU); Aurelia Mihai (DE/RO); Hila Peleg (DE/ISR); RO-MD (Moldova in 2 Scripts) / Vector Association (RO), KSA:K Chisinau (MD); Mladen Stilinovic (HR); SZAF / Judit Fischer, Mikos Mecs (HU); Rasa Todosijevic (SRB); Mona Vatamanu & Florin Tudor (RO); Tirdad Zolghadr (TXL)

Mediation Projects

Creative Mediation Project / Studio for Art Practices and Debates (RO); Contemporary Art for Young People / Coordinated by Ana Maria Iftimi, Alexandru Bounegru, Oana Nicuta (RO); S-video IN / S-video OUT. Made in Iasi / Video Program curated by Catalin Gheorghe (RO); MINIpoint – Info Point program / Coordinated by Daniela Palimariu and Dan Basu (RO)

An illustrated publication in English, Romanian and French and a free guide leaflet will accompany the biennial and will be available in each location.

Organizer: Vector Association, Iasi

Main Partner: Banca Comerciala Romana

Partners: tranzit. hu – tranzit contemporary art program is supported by the Erste Bank Group; KSA:K – Center for Contemporary Art, Chisinau; Centre Culturel Francais, Iasi; Goethe Zentrum, Iasi; University of Arts ‘George Enescu’, Iasi

Supported by: Periferic 8 is made possible, in part, by a special grant from the American Center Foundation in support of Vector Association’s exhibitions and programs; Administration of the National Cultural Fund – AFCN Romania; Municipality of Iasi – ‘Iasi 600’ Cultural Program; Seacex – Sociedad Estatal para la Acción Cultural Exterior; ACAX – Agency for Contemporary Art Exchange, Budapest; Hungarian Cultural Center, Bucharest; Ambassade de la Republique Francaise a Bucarest; Iaspis, International Artists Studio Program in Sweden; Romanian Cultural Institute, Stockholm; Student House for Culture in Iasi; The National Theatre ‘Vasile Alecsandri’, Iasi; Romanian Literature Museum – Casa Pogor, Iasi

Media Partners: Romanian Television Iasi, Idea magazine, Observator Cultural,, Suplimentul de Cultura, Radio Guerrilla, Ziarul de Iasi, SapteSeri,,, Springerin

For further information on detailed program, travel and accommodation, please visit: and

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