Tukku Magi Project
We envision Tukku Magi as a space thriving on diversity and bringing together distinct artistic forms, traditions, approaches, and talent. As Kenji Ekuan, father of Japanese industrial design stated, when explaining what design is, “we will take on the past and the future, the local and the global, religion and science, in an unlimited way to create its own particular world.”
At this point, we feel it is important to ask open-ended questions and to keep the discussion alive - to let many ‘unknowns’ persist about the future of Tukku Magi. It is paramount to allocate time to the process of shaping Tukku Magi organically, building (both materially and figuratively) on the three sources that form Tukku Magi. One is the distinct landscape and historic space dedicated to Tukku Magi in the city of Tukums, Latvia. The second is the richness of representations and meanings of traditional African art that constitute the foundational collection of Tukku Magi. The third is the energy and creativity of contemporary artists, reinforced by their interaction with each other in the context of Tukku Magi.
Our mission is to reshape the paradigm of perceptions of traditional art, bringing it as an equal partner into modern art discourse. We plan to accomplish this by creating a multi- cultural and cross-disciplinary space, allowing for the meeting of the old and the new, academic and experimental, North and South. To achieve this goal we will establish strong partnerships among art and cultural institutions of Northern Europe, as well as the global South, concentrating on Africa.
Currently, there is little understanding of African cultural paths in Latvia and, we believe, in Northern Europe more broadly. This is exactly why we expect Tukku Magi and its foundational collection to play an important role in presenting African art to the cultural institutions of the region.
In our work, we will try to move away from the blanket category of “African art.” We see this term as obscuring a rich diversity of artistic traditions and movements. We want to create a space for this rich set of traditions to interact with the equally diverse set of art forms and artists from Northern Europe.
Our curatorial and educational efforts will be directed at the young, living in a more integrated world, more open to excitement and discoveries coming from the meeting of artistic forms from different continents and traditions.
We aim to establish strong partnerships with Northern European, North American and African art institutions, starting TUKKU MAGI project on its path of discovery and cultural cross-pollination.
Historic premises of Zebergs malt factory dedicated to Tukku Magi by Justs Karlsons in the city of Tukums, Latvia: