Bulgarian artists take over Barcelona

They will show water-colours, prints, ceramic works and jewellery at the latest in a series of plein airs

Eight Bulgarian artists are taking over Barcelona. These are Ivan Dodov (water-colours), Simeon Krastev (posters, portraits, paintings), Emil Penchev (sculptures, paintings), Tsvetan Donkovski (ceramics, paintings), Ilian Stoyanov (woodcarving, water-colours), Mariana Mateva (illustrations, applied arts, paintings), and Ilza Hristova, aka florizi (applied arts, jewellery, paintings). The group is led by Gabriela Zhekova (prints, paintings), organiser of plein air practices in Bulgaria and abroad.

Gabriela Zhekova has served as sound-engineer for the Bulgarian National Television for a long time and has 28 years of experience as a painter. Her techniques of preference are ink, oils and acrylics. She has 16 solo exhibitions under her belt and has been organising unorthodox plein air practices with other painters since 2001. She normally invites really creative people not necessarily limiting themselves to painting, ceramics, posters, sculptures or the applied arts, but who also write poems, essays or travel diaries, or play musical instruments. Over 70 people have participated in these plein airs, many of them multiple times, held in various spots in Bulgaria, in Ohrid, Athens, the island of Thasos, southern Italy, and now Barcelona. The events' guests have included artists from Macedonia, Israel and Italy.

The 27th plein air is taking place from 10 until 15 October in Art Hostel in Barcelona, owned by Sasha and Dima Damyanov. “This is a place with creative atmosphere where the owner family has been hosting people from the art world for years - musicians, writers, painters,” says Gabriela Zhekova.

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