Edi Hila-Painter of Transformation
The exhibition’s title was “Edi Hila, the Painter of the Transformation.” As soon as you enter on the hall of the gallery, you see the painting called “Planting Trees”, a painting of 1971 which, although at first sight doesn’t have anything suspicious, it was criticized by the regime, was considered a painting that deviated from the doctrine of socialist realism and lacked the so-called revolutionary spirit.
Yet the colors of that painting are amazing. Edi Hila was punished for this photo with re-education at the bird breeding plant.
But Hila continued to paint wherever he was. The most specific period reflected in this exhibition is the transition years in Albania, the sinking of the ship in Otranto, the emigration of Albanians, the gloomy poor life of the years after the fall of Communism, and depicting the realities of the transformation of Albania.
The images of that time are shocking, and Hila has included them in his beautiful paintings.
His most significant series include Paradox (2000–2005), Relations (2002–2014), Threat (2003–2009), Roadside Objects (2007–2010), Penthouses (2013), Martyrs of the Nation Boulevard (2015), and Tent on the Roof of a Car (2017).
Very special is a picture of his sick mother, sitting on the couch with a remote control in one hand. Likewise, a painting titled “Family”, the Durresi beach paintings, and the apartment buildings in Tirana are very significant.
Many local and foreign tourists visited the exhibition. It will remain open until 29 July. We invite all those who visit Tirana not to miss this exhibition.
Curated by Joanna Mytkowska, Kathrin Rhomberg, and Erzen Shkololli
Exhibition architecture by Büro Meyer-Grohbrügge
Edi Hila: Painter of Transformation is a joint project of the National Gallery of Arts, Albania, the Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw, and the Kontakt Collection in Vienna.
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