Agita Steinberga & Andris Marackovskis, Dowry Chest, 2016–2017

3.–6.11. Dowry Chest # 1, Sepän talo, Rauma.
11.11-15.11. Dowry Chest # 2, Gallery 3H+K, Pori.
26.11. "Time" photo project at Seppä house Christmas event at 10am–4pm.
30.11. opening of Cycle, a permanent work, Villa Jussoila retirement home.
20.–27.1.2017 Dowry Chest #3 In Time, office of the Association for the Unemployed of Rauma.
Read the article on Länsi-Suomi 3.11.

Residency 6.9.2016–31.1.2017
Agita Steinberga (s. 1988 LV) &
Andris Marackovskis (s.1986 LV)

The project grows up from a hand made dowry chest made in 1907. It's a heritage that makes connections between past and present. Results of the workshops are manifested in exhibitions that cover several media – sculpture, installation, sound and video, projections and kinetic art.

Šteinberga and Maračkovskis have involved residents of Rauma from different social groups and different ages to create objects, collect materials for installations and art works. They had “Hand” workshops in Rauma Freinet School, Rauma Town Youth Workshop, Retirement home Villa Jussoila in collaboration with University of Turku / Department of Teacher Education / Rauma Unit, Rauman Normaalikoulu Teacher Training School and Rauma Association for the Unemployed of Rauma, also a few artists from Rauma and T.E.H.D.A.S. & NYTE association artists from Pori has been involved. Hand casting–papier-mâché workshops together with the photographic project at Seppä house the project has been involving nearly 300 people.

Project started already in Latvia, in the day when the artists get the dowry chest in the trailer and started their way to Rauma. It's about this old antiquarian movement after more than 100 years being placed in countryside in Varaklani, Latvia. The idea is to make connections between past and nowadays, also between Latvian and Finnish contemporary art using and transforming the old dowry chest, which belonged to Šteinberga’s great great grandmother called Anna Briška. She was born in 1883, had a long and hard life and died 90 years old in 1973. The chest was made for her when she was 22 years old. In the exhibitions the chest had a notable role.

Artists have the belief, that the most important things are humans and nature. In the exhibition you can see the result of the “Hands” workshops as a sculpture and video/sound work also kinetic work inspired by Finnish nature. Artists looking for balance between mechanical, automatic and manual labor presence.

During the residency artists have also worked with the students of Visual environment course of the Turku University, Rauma Teacher Education Department and with the Mehiläinen Nursing Home / Villa Jussoila elderly residents. A permanent work of art Cycle was made in collaboration. It is based on the material produced during the Dowry Chest workshops with children, adolescents and the elderly. Older people's wishes for the themes – nature, garden and plants – are facing cyclical nature of life and the dialogue between the nature and humans. In the same space there are assembled works from students's Rag Rag community art project: cushion covers and wall textiles designed by the elderly residents and made by the studens, in addition installations made from natural materials.

Agita Šteinberga (1988) has studied in Art Academy of Latvia, received master's degree in sculpture in 2014, meanwhile studied a year in École supérieure d'art's & médias de Caen, France and after graduating worked as intern in artist residence for seven month in Caylus, France. Steinberga is participation in exhibitions, workshops and residencies since 2006 in Latvia, Sweden, Finland, France, Estonia, Lithuania, Russia.

Andris Maračkovskis (1986) studied in Art Academy of Latvia, Master's degree in Sculpture in 2013, one semester studied also in Universidade de Porto, Belas Artes, Portugal. In 2013 received KKNord grant for working in Sim residency Reykjavik. Maračkovskis is participation in exhibitions, workshops and residencies since 2007 in Latvia and abroad.