Catinca Tabacaru Gallery presents State of Emergence

Catinca Tabacaru and Lesia Kulchynska met in Bucharest on February 26, 2022, the day Kulchynska crossed into Romania, the day after Russia attacked Ukraine. It did not take long for the two to decide they needed to create a platform to amplify voices of those experiencing the war firsthand whether being inside the Ukraine or as part of its diaspora.

Lesia Kulchynska is a curator and visual studies researcher currently based in Rome. She is an adjunct professor at the Department of Communication and Media Studies at John Cabot University (Rome) and is affiliated with Bibliotheca Hertziana – Max Planck Institute of Art History as a postdoctoral fellow. She holds a PhD in film studies from the Rylsky Institute of Art Studies, Folklore and Ethnology. She has worked as a curator at the Visual Culture Research Center (Kyiv) and as a researcher at Pinchuk Art Center. She curated The School of the Lonesome at the 2015 Kyiv Biennial,The School of Kyiv. In 2018–19 she was a Fulbright Scholar at New York University where she continued her research of violent responses to art, studying cases of banned and attacked exhibitions and artworks in Ukraine.

Catinca Tabacaru holds a JD/LL.M from Duke University School of Law. She worked for the UN International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda and for the Chief Defense Counsel for the Military Commissions at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba before taking a position as a litigation attorney in New York. In 2010 she co-founded Women’s Voices Now, a non-profit giving voices to women living in Muslim-majority countries. She began her curatorial practice with Women’s Voices from the Muslim World, a collection of short films from 40 countries, which were watched online in 176 countries. She opened her eponymous gallery in 2014 on the Lower East Side and currently manages its exhibition space in Bucharest. The gallery organizes annual projects in Harare, Zimbabwe, runs a traveling international residency for artists and curators, and serves as an interdisciplinary platform with a focus on performance art. Putting an emphasis on research surrounding postcolonialism and post-communism, the gallery’s program regularly addresses issues of historical, political, and cultural relevance.