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„Intention for Anti-item“
is an art project, initiated by a group of artists, located in Veliko Tarnovo, coordinated by associate professor Ph.D. Atanas Totliakov, chief assistant Dr. Ekaterina Ivanova, Denitsa Milousheva and Qnitsa Fendulova

The project aims to study the objects and processes, which are included as “a totality of interconnected experiences and consciousness”1. Invoking “sensory phenomena”, the objects are considered as by their apparent functionality.

  • Antoinette Toneva
  • Bogomil Ivanov
  • Gabriela Nikolova
  • Galatea Zaharieva
  • Daniela Nikolova
  • Zornitsa Vasileva
  • Ivanina Dimitrova
  • Ilina Peneva
  • Mariana Dimitrova
  • Momchil Enchev
  • Nadezhda Deneva
  • Radostin Radoev
  • Rilka Pencheva
  • Selenai Mehmedova
  • Svilena Doneva
  • Simona Apostolova
  • Stefan Vasilev
  • Stoyan Georgiev

„Intention for Anti-item“

uses an approach, which is a part of Metamodernist ideas. According to its basis postulates, the project portrays “what “comes after” postmodernism”2.

Metamodernism raises doubts about its two inherent fields of thought – modernism and postmodernism, oscillating and producing oscillations between them. “…some are calling it the dominant paradigm of the Internet age”3.

The applied approach “overlays realities” to individually chosen objects and morphs them into Anti-items. These are objects with new cultural values, which are infiltrated into already existing social realities. In this particular case, the prefix “anti” completely denies everything that we know about the object and the way we use it. We could reference as well the concepts of “non-tool”4 and “anti-art”5. In the course of execution, “Intention for Anti-item” passes through different social realities: the institutional microenvironment, the urban space, followed by an exposition, which unites all the elements in the activity.

The process causes immediate communication with different social groups, putting them in the position of recipients and accomplices. One of our main goals is to create a new creative environment with free access.

Another goal of the project is including the Anti-items in the urban space and the public transport through performative acts. The movement of the participants with their Anti-items in the public space create conceptual drawings, mapping the movements with smartphone apps. Those concepts follow the activity in the public environment and report the introduction of the Anti-items and the apps as anti-norms in the public transport. The elements, creating the conceptual drawing are the body of the artist, the movement in the public space and the correlation between the two. Such drawings are archived and recreated through the visual images of the purposeful movement in the social environment.

The approach of the project, provoked by the ideas of Metamodernism, is a practical work in the field of visual studies. The goal is making sense of the global transformation, started in the 20th century, as a transformative transition from modernism, postmodernism to Metamodernism, studying the mass perception of the image as the main logical essence of the phenomena-forms. The project provokes and follows the group interactions in different social environments.

„Intention for Anti-item“ refers critically to the banal everyday life, composed of universal everyday stereotypes.
The Anti-items are created through conscious termination of their functions. The transformed objects do not function as utilitarian objects, but through the environment and the actions of the creators acquire the status of a creation. Those objects are recognized as Anti-conformism of the modern forms and exist in the extended field of correlations.
Observed is the transition from postmodernism to Metamodernism as a search for new forms of existence and creating together, after the alleged end of art proposed by postmodernism. Seth Abramson ( ) thinks that Metamodernism provides us with opportunities for self-reconstruction and our culture, no matter how problematic it could be, as a possible ways of forming new types of creativity and social activity.

The subject of the research is aiming for generated situations, in which the recipients are incidentally present passers or passengers, accomplices in the studied environment.

The project is made up of numerous fluid situations that are unfolded in time and space in the form of co-experiences of creativity and performative elements in a social environment.

Approach:  Metamodernism as a contemporary paradigm in culture and in art is relatively unknown to the Bulgarian art scene. The current project searches for immediate merger and harmonizing of its creative strategy with a Metamodernist approach. The novelty in the integral coupling of the artistic practices, born in the local creative environment, with the global world of competing ideas. The intention behind those activities is provoked by the vacuum which occurred after the end of postmodernism.

An interdisciplinary approach through the use of different media:

Technological: popular apps for mapping the activity, digital photo and video documentation, vector graphics, digital stamp, internet based resources, short films.

Analog: transformation of existing utilitarian objects with termination of their function, objects, assemblies, constructing and deconstructing objects.

Biological: the artist’s body and its adjacent sensorics.

Types of environments: institutional (educational, scientific, gallery), public (urban space, public transport), media (internet-based platform).

Creative forms to generate ideas: individual and group (creating a system of images, objects and situations, using the method of morphological analysis).

During execution, the process goes through different social realities, from institutional microenvironment to urban space, followed by exposition in the gallery space, which unites all the elements in the activity. Directly implemented communication with different social groups, sets off a chain reaction, which puts everyone present in the study environment, simultaneously in the position of recipient and accomplice.

“Intention for Anti-item” is a transmedia vector, crossing different informational fields. The target groups that the project recognizes as the audience are the local and national cultural space, the scientific community, urban space and different microenvironments.

The current project is part of a series of practical experiments in the field of Visual Studies, including:

“Intersubject” – 2020 – Totliakov, A. Intersubjectivity and intersubject, Visual Studies, number 1, 2021 DOI: 10.54664/TWOJ2128

“Metamorph. Chain of Changes” – 2021 – Enchev, M. Dimitrova, M. Creativity of social groups. The method of morphological analysis and its application in the experiment “Metamorph. Chain of Changes”, Visual Studies, number 3, 2022 DOI:10.54664/UQAP3364

“Intention for Anti-item” was presented to the scientific community, during the International Scientific Conference “Visual Studies”, 22.10.2022. At a later stage, the process will be formulated in the form of a scientific report, summing up the conclusions of the experimental activity and the new creative forms generated.

1  Morisot, J. Povier, R. Dictionary of Aesthetics and Philosophy of Art, RIVA 2012 p.235 – “Intersubjectivity”
2 Abramson, S. Metamodernism: The Basics ( )
3 Ibid
4 Totlyakov, A. Phenomenological drawing – Concept, Visual studies issue 1, 2017. p. 60
5 Angelov, V. Aesthetics: Dictionary of Actual, Rare, Discussed and Imposed by the Vanguard Terms, East – West 2014 p.12
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6 December, 2014
25 June, 2022
3 August, 2023

… a series of performances, construction and deconstruction of objects …

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29 December, 2023
City of Veliko Tarnovo, Bulgaria
30 December, 2023
City of Veliko Tarnovo, Bulgaria