Accelerator Today Podcast – guest Gia Țidorescu, curator and member of the Accelerator team. Sharing knowledge, one-on-one, with people about contemporary art is what’s really missing. This will bring the public closer to art.

October 26, 2023

 Listen to the podcast here.


“To really open up contemporary art to the public. We need that even in our day-to-day activities or when we go out for a coffee, or when we meet people who are not in the same field as us that, we don’t behave as if what we know has to stay between us, but we have to open up and explain everything to everybody as if it’s something we want to share with everybody.


Georgia Țidorescu is a young curator based in Bucharest. Since 2018, she has been working in exhibition production for various institutions and organizations. Currently, Georgia is in an experimental phase of discovering her curatorial practice. Within Accelerator. Mentoring and Production Programme, she is Technical Coordinator, handling the production and technical matters of the project, with a significant contribution in coordinating and implementing its public art stage.


Andrei Breahnă: Welcome to a new edition of Accelerator Today, the penultimate episode of our discussion series on contemporary art. We had a very diverse set of guests – from team members to business people, collectors, people who support the art and who, in each of the conversations, contributed a different perspective on this matter. In the context of our project, which we want to be a platform to promote contemporary art, a platform to launch emerging artists, I’m already looking back with nostalgia at all that is behind it and that I have the perfect person next to me to discuss the end of the project with. Welcome, Gia Țidorescu.

Georgia (Gia) Țidorescu: Hello and thank you so much for the invitation, both in the project and in this podcast.


Andrei Breahnă: You joined the team halfway through the project and thank you for your absolutely fantastic contribution both in dealing with the artists, which is more than important, and on the technical side which proved to be quite laborious. Tell us how you see the Accelerator project?

Gia Țidorescu: Indeed, I joined the project halfway through, when the discussions with the artists and the curator were already quite developed and the exhibition was starting to be prepared. I had the opportunity to work closely with the artists and the curator of the exhibition, which was inspiring, because I had followed Tevz (Logar) before, I knew his work and I found it very interesting to see his relationship with young artists. Then we had the exhibition, which was a success, and there were many related events.


Andrei Breahnă: We had a lot of related events and I invite you to put emphasis on the area of cultural mediation, which for me is very important, because it is not enough nowadays to produce a very good exhibition. You really have to identify communities, groups of people, stakeholders who can become an active audience for the exhibition. Please tell us about this, because we had the opportunity to do workshops that were also quite challenging and interesting.

Gia Țidorescu: It was super interesting to do these workshops as well. We engaged two communities that I have to say I haven’t seen really present in exhibitions in Bucharest so far, including students from CESI University (Centre of Excellence in Image Studies) and students from Ion Mincu University of Architecture and Urbanism. We saw that the participants of this workshop were very engaged in conversation with the artists and had a lot of curiosity about the themes developed in the workshops. It seems to me that, through these workshops, the students discuss with each other, they walk the talk and you learn more about the artist’s practice, and about the gallery space, about the association and about these projects. From one mediation event to another, the community and the audience can actually grow.


Andrei Breahnă: In the visual arts we tend to be very specialised. Those of us who work in the cultural field, generally, see quite little interaction between visual artists and other specialisations, such as musicians, for example. I think we have contributed by this unbundling of our activities, which are otherwise like silos.

I suggest to continue with the last stage of the project in which you were directly involved – art in the public space. This stage was a leap into the unknown for all of us. How did you find this stage? You were extremely involved, including the permitting part, working directly with the artists. How did you find the whole process?

Gia Țidorescu: I have to say that all my work so far has not prepared me at all for this part of the project or for developing public art projects. So, it was really a leap into the unknown. I knew the practice of all the artists involved in the project, I already knew the projects and the ideas they had for developing artworks in the public space. What I didn’t know was how you can engage the public in these works, how these works can be sustainable and be referenced even after the project is completed, and how these projects are carried out from the legal aspects point of view. For each piece of artwork the approach was different, whether we had to work more on engaging the public in the area where the project happened, or whether we worked on the logistical side or actually implementing and getting public permits.


Andrei Breahnă: I would like, first of all, to welcome the seven artists who participated in this last stage of the project and who submitted extremely ambitious projects, sometimes even group projects. Their contribution in this context, in which we have not looked programmatically at artists who specialise, if we can put it that way, in this area is all the more commendable. Our intention was to make the framework for presenting the projects more flexible, precisely because they were in the context of a mentoring programme. That is, we are not in a context of a biennial or in a more formal context. And in that sense, we really encouraged the artists to experiment.  How does the Accelerator experience help you as a curator? Because you have done something extremely adminrable and a leap into the unknown. You moved to Bucharest, you joined our team, you are involved in several projects. What has this roller-coaster ride been like for you?

Gia Țidorescu: It was a super interesting project for me, first of all because I worked in a super cohesive team and on a super long project. I had the opportunity to work with 10 emerging artists that I admire and respect and have admired their practice for a long time already. At the same time, I was able to follow the practice and how to run a long-term project with Tevz, who is a curator I admire. At the same time, I would like to mention that the stage of art in the public space was super helpful to me because I had no experience in this area and I was able to notice the gaps we have in contemporary art in Romania and some things I would like to focus on maybe in the future, to see how they can be better developed. I mean, I think there is a need to fund more projects in this area and I think there is a need for more knowledge about what art in the public space means, outside our country, where it is perhaps better developed.

I mean, earlier, in writing projects application we mentioned examples very close to us, such as Bulgaria, where art in public space is very well developed and also in its capital. I think this is possible here too and I would like to pursue this direction. So that helped me super much to find a niche that I want to develop further.


Andrei Breahnă: It’s very important to have a proper funding framework, because an art in the public space project is much more complex by nature. It is not just an object placed in a space, but often the result of research that takes many months, sometimes even years. It is therefore very much about interacting with the public. Especially here you can’t ignore the mediation component, because in a scene like ours, the stake of developing the audience is as important as it gets. Beyond this project, we are now already implementing two new Accelerator projects. You mentioned one very important thing, which is the duration of this project. The main benefit of this project was that, running for two years, we were able to develop a vision and we were able to have a critical thinking that was able to fit into the 24-month timeframe. This gave us a basis for the next two accelerators Accelerator Brașov and Accelerator Câmpulung. You are involved in both projects, this time much more deeply. You are involved as a mentor and you have the opportunity to share your expertise on the curation area, but you are also involved in the projects, in all their complexity. How did you see Accelerator developing so immediately?

Gia Țidorescu: I would like to start by saying that I find it very interesting that this project can continue in more cities and can be shaped in so many ways. And it’s super good that they can involve more and more artists. The mentoring continues and I believe it’s super important. These are subjects that are not necessarily covered in universities. For Accelerator Brașov, we are already in the production period of works and we are going to open the group exhibition at the Museum of Art in Brasov on the 10th of November. It seems to me that the artists have been very engaged already from the first part, from the mentoring stage. It seems to me that everyone had their curiosities ready beforehand and they were able to talk to the mentors about all topics of interest in the labs. And now we are going to have some discussions about their more “in deapth” practice and see how we can bring it all together in the exhibition that we will open.


Andrei Breahnă: I think that a very big advantage of the Accelerator in Brașov is that the exhibition will take place in a museum, the Museum of Art in Brasov, which is a prestigious public institution in Romania, which provides an extra platform for the artists who are involved in the project, because it is already an institutional anchor and continuity for many of them. In relation to Câmpulung, at the moment we are recording, we are in the preliminary stage of the project. Next year we intend to do, as we did in Brașov, an information workshop in which we intend to create a first contact with the communities in the city. How do you think this project will be carried out, although in a different setting from a larger city like Brașov?

Gia Țidorescu: In my view, all the stages of the Accelerator Câmpulung will be really different from the other editions of the project. I think it will also be interesting to organize the community to take part in the workshops that we will be running, to see which artists are interested in looking together with us, maybe, a context where Câmpulung is an interesting place to exhibit and develop projects. At the same time, we also want to find a location and people who are open to this kind of projects and initiatives, because the city and the people in it are open to this kind of things, we just need someone to start and show that it is possible or viable to make this kind of things happen.


Andrei Breahnă: I would add one more point, and that is that we call these Accelerator projects – Accelerator Brașov, Accelerator Câmpulung. One of the most important aspects was that, yes, we have in mind certain locations where these projects are carried out, but, at the same time, we aim to create dialogues and, in this respect, we had applicants at national level, both in Brașov and in Câmpulung. So, the invitation is to open horizons and create channels of communication between artistic communities that otherwise might not even meet. Almost finally, I have a slightly more general question about the contemporary art landscape in Romania.

We in Romania always say that we are a country with a lot of potential in all areas. At the same time, however, we see that although the art scene in Romania is dynamic rather than static and a lot is happening, including in this independent area, art galleries, big events, there are also many limitations. What is missing today in the art system to somehow accelerate this development, to get out of this area of, let’s say, precariousness, of permanent project to create a new dimension?

Gia Țidorescu: It seems to me that one of the things that I have seen the most so far, in my of activity, is a public who wants to understand, but somehow it passes by a people reluctant to explain some things, which then become elitist and contemporary art ends up being in a bubble. Exactly the same people end up going to all the events, either in the same city or all over the country, without actually opening contemporary art to the general public. A lot of work, a lot of projects are developed comprising actions, elements, cities that absolutely anyone can relate to. It’s not a strict arena, you don’t need a specialised training for this and I think mediation or the component of making the public understand that contemporary art is not just a thing for 10% of the population – it’s missing the most. To really open up contemporary art to the public.

A lot of projects say that they do this and indeed there are a lot of mediation programmes, it’s just that we need that even in our day-to-day activities or when we go out for a coffee, or when we meet people who are not in the same field as us that, we don’t behave as if what we know has to stay between us, but we have to open up and explain everything to everybody as if it’s something we want to share with everybody.


Andrei Breahnă: And if we do that a little bit and then more and more maybe it really generates this accelerating effect, this greater understanding and I would say, even de-stressing, because people feel genuinely intimidated by contemporary art.

Gia, thank you very much for your contribution to this project, for your extremely positive presence, for your very special energy and I think we already have reasons to be optimistic. We have two projects that will keep us busy for at least nine months from now. We’re already thinking about new projects and we’ll definitely have a chance to discuss them in the future, maybe also in this podca