Ulric Roldanus - Satellite Balkan, Romania

Should I stay or should I go?

I am convinced that the worldwide feeling of fear and the concept of narrow-mindedness may be reduced if people from different cultures stay open to exchanges. In my opinion Artists in residency programs and diverse exchange projects can substantially and positively contribute to the action of stepping out of this situation. As I am an (visual) artist, I see it as my duty to keep discovering and reflecting on the richness that lies in exchanging and sharing. This has resulted in the fact that the concepts of non-sedentariness and being ‘on the road’ have become the major themes of my work. Here I see a new form of nomadism, a ‘contemporary nomadism’. Because of over- constantly change. As a consequence we can state that the old definitions and patterns along which we used to live no longer fit us. Basically nobody lives any longer in a mono cultural, mono religious, mono ‘racial’ society or mono sexual (in the sense of sexual preferences and the relations between the different genders). In this sense –according to my opinion- everybody has become a (contemporary) nomad, looking for new patterns and definitions. Therefore nomadism should not be seen as an old-fashioned way of life, but as a contemporary state of living that is relevant to all of us.

Project     Super Selfie Me (part II)

            a pilgrimage through the Balkans

For the Nomadic Village I want to link two places that attract a huge amount of pilgrims yearly in Eastern Europe. Starting in Međugorje (Bosnia and Herzegovina) I will cycle to Csíksomlyó/Mircureia Ciuc (Rumania) over a distance of some 1600 km. Thus creating a new personal pilgrimage. During this trip I want to engage myself with local communities and look for coincidental encounters. My aim is to discuss what religion, pilgrimages and nomadism means these days. I want to record these conversations, my actual travelling and share the footage, during and after the trip.

This project can be seen as an extension of my last pilgrimage by bicycle from the city of Santiago de Compostela to Lourdes, with as a result the piece ‘Super Selfie Me’, a route of some 1250 km covered in 13 days.