BoSA - Briefing On Soft Arts, 2020

Josipa Štefanec, Husks, 2020 Photographer: Marina Paulenka

BoSA - Briefing On Soft Arts / BoSA - according to the questioning of soft arts is a curatorial project of the Center for Research of Fashion and Clothing (CIMO), which turns to contemporary art practices in which textiles are questioned as a material but also as a medium.

The exhibition program of the project conceptually connects the concept of "soft arts", which, in addition to a direct connection with textile art located on the edges of applied and "free" art, now extends to other media of artistic expression.

Historically, textiles emerged as an equal artistic medium in the artistic practices of the 1960s. It is transferred from private, home and anonymous women's handicrafts and applied arts to the field of public art, mainly in the form of "soft" sculpture and architecture, in which textile creativity is associated with the so-called "women's art".

The dichotomy of soft and hard can be figuratively captured using terms that describe hard and soft edges (known in English as soft and hard edges or still lost and found edges). The two often opposite ways appear as visible or invisible, profiled or unprofiled, definite or indefinite, which are clear on the surface and in space or are fused with them. In this sense, the hard edge in this project is conceived as dominant values and dominant structure, while the soft edge, on the contrary, is conceived as non-dominant values and soft structure (social, political, symbolic). Thus, with this project we try to open a "soft space" that is built from the relationship between text, on the one hand, and textiles on the other, and which directly affects the historical, social, political and symbolic language of textiles.

Today, contemporary artists are once again delving into the materiality and semantics of textiles, into the space of textile-textual discourse and traditional handicraft techniques that open up a range of different possibilities for artistic expression. It opens up an artistic space that transcends "soft" textile architecture and sculpture and verbalizes the relationship between text (iles) and body, text (iles) and politics, text (iles) and performance, forming softness as a present value, sometimes only on the edges of hard dominant structures.

The curatorial project and exhibition program of BoSA aims to affirm the field of soft arts, mainly related to textiles, which are on the margins of artistic creation. In this respect, the goal of soft art is to co-set as equal media to other and dominant media of artistic creation.

 Dealing with softness (materials, media, expressions, cohabitations) for the artist is an entry into the possible production of works on the theme of "soft art", affirmation of the field of textile art and pushing the boundaries in artistic expression.


* The BoSA project was realized in 2020 through a solo exhibition by Josip Štefanec. More info in the Exhibitions section.

* BoSA - Briefing On Soft Arts / BoSA - according to the questioning of soft arts, the permanent project of the CIMO center started in 2019.

* The project is supported by the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Croatia and the City Office for Culture, Education and Sports of the City of Zagreb, for 2020.

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