In artist Diāna Tamane’s work, everyday events are a source of inspiration, with herself and her family as the main characters. Often, her relatives also become co-authors. Over the years, Diāna’s mother Tatjana, a truck driver, has become the artist’s most active and trustworthy collaborator. She agrees to be photographed, makes videos for her daughter’s exhibitions, and does not object to their phone conversations being made public, even if they reveal bumps in their relationship. The exhibition “Within Arm’s Reach” at the ISSP Gallery (Riga, Latvia) features an extensive series of her mothers’ drawings, created while distributing various goods around Europe, and a video work “Letters from Mom III, Mishanya”, which includes footage shot by both mother and daughter. The daughter commissioned her mother to draw, encouraging Tatjana to document the everyday life rather than romanticise her traditionally as a masculine perceived profession, which Tatjana turned to eight years ago when her café went bankrupt. However, the end result shows both women’s desire to find a way to a mutual understanding. Idyllic landscapes, nature observations and iconic tourist attractions such as the Eiffel Tower, have snuck in between scenes from highways, gas station cafés, cityscapes and portraits of the mother’s husband, who is also a truck driver. Taken together, these reflect the everyday reality of the mother’s profession, simultaneously recalling romantic postcards. The video “Letters from Mom III, Mishanya” is based on the mother’s story about her adventures with a creature who decided to settle down under the seats in the truck, and a monotonous view through the front windshield. The monotony is interrupted from time to time by footage of both nature and everyday scenes filmed by mother and daughter, becoming their point of connection. By giving her mother a voice, Diana questions what kind of art is considered valuable in the context of contemporary art institutions, and what is excluded. She also addresses the role of women today, trying to find a common language between different generations and career choices.
Curator of the exhibition – Evita Goze.
DIANA TAMANE (Latvia/Estonia, 1986) was born in Riga, and lives and works between Tartu and Riga. Her primary medium of expression is photography, but she also uses video, sound, text and found objects in her work. Graduated from the Tartu Art College, the LUCA School of Arts in Brussels and HISK in Ghent. Her works have been exhibited at the first Riga International Biennial of Contemporary Art, kim? Contemporary Art Centre, contemporary art festival Survival Kit, S.M.A.K Municipal Museum of Contemporary Art (Belgium), Winterthur Museum (Switzerland), Kathmandu Triennale (Nepal), Surplus Space (China) and elsewhere. In 2020, APE published her first book “Flower Smuggler”, which has been nominated for Paris-Photo Aperture Foundation PhotoBook Awards and has won Les Rencontres d’Arles Book Awards 2020.
Photography: Ingus Bajārs
Gallery name: ISSP Gallery
Address: Berga Bazārs, Marijas iela 13 k.3, Riga
Opening hours: Tue, Thu-Sat 12:00 - 18:00, Wed 12:00 - 20:00
Open: 05.11.2020 - 09.01.2021