Glasgow International 2020

Marija Nemcenko

Marija Nemcenko (b. 1989, Kaunas, Lithuania) lives and works in Glasgow, UK. Nemcenko’s explores contemporary myths and their dissemination through popular media. She is interested in stereotypes, which, in our current times, often become instruments for reasoning with the world.

In order to challenge our perception of reality through myth and legend, the artist creates satirical and docu-fictional scenarios that explore the themes of cultural identity, migration and exoticism. Nemcenko often draws inspiration from her personal experience of migration from a young post-soviet country by analysing her own displacement. She refers to this cultural shift as acquiring a “double vision” – a term discussed by contemporary critic Homi Bhabha. This binary vision encourages geographical sensitivity to the motherland and the residing state at once, making one feel familiar yet distant to both. Similarly, these feelings of nostalgia instigate an appreciation of one’s origin and culture anew, creating a space for reflection upon our perception of the ‘cultural other’.

Solo shows include: Between East and West there is a place (from a pop song); Kabinetas at Kaunas Artist House, Kaunas, Lithuania (2017); Between modernity and tradition in Moroccan folk textiles, Ultra Laboratory, Casablanca, Morocco (2013).

Group Exhibitions include: MFA Selected, Citizen M, Glasgow, UK (2017); Keir Street Kitchen, Glasgow Open House Festival, Glasgow, Scotland (2017); Silainiai Project, Kabinetas Project Space, Kaunas, Lithuania (2016); MFA Degree Show, Glue Factory, Glasgow, UK (2016); Pulses and Pauses; Marrakech Biennial, Marrakech, Morocco (2016).

For more information visit:

Marija Nemcenko



In an intuitive study of socialist structures that expands from Eastern Europe’s brutalist landscapes to Glasgow’s tower blocks, BRUT finds shared experiences to reveal the cultural legacy of these constructions. Influenced by personal experience of migration from a young post-Soviet nation, Nemcenko addresses the questions of unfulfilled promises and elaborates upon how these concrete colonies come to define a certain social and cultural identity from multiple perspectives at once.

Supported by Glasgow City Heritage Trust, Lithuanian Culture Institute and Lithuanian Embassy in the UK.

Nemcenko will give a talk on Wed 25 April – more details here.

Fri 20 April – Mon 7 May
Mon – Sun, 1pm-4pm

Artist’s talk
Wed 25 April, 7pm

Partially accessible

Marija Nemcenko

Artist Talk


In this talk, artist Marija Nemčenko will take visitors through her work and elaborate upon the links between her exhibition for Glasgow International and the historical surroundings of Fairfield Heritage Centre. Borrowing ideas from a prominent thinker of the 20th century, Walter Benjamin, Nemčenko will discuss Modernist and Brutalist constructions in regards to the themes of architectural heritage, preservation, progress, labor and the revolutionary potential hidden within these concrete colonies.

Nemčenko will be joined by Hussein Mitha and Edward Hollis.

Hussein Mitha (UK) is an academic studying Walter Benjamin’s work and utopian fiction, delivering a talk covering modernist architecture, utopian ideas, destruction and Walter Benjamin’s ideas of revolutionary potential in relation to the tower blocks.

Edward Hollis (UK), Deputy Director of Research at Edinburgh College of Art, whose talk will cover modernist ruins and his work at St. Peters Seminary – an outstanding example of Brutalist buildings in Scotland.

Free; booking required. Book via Eventbrite.

Wed 25 April, 7pm

Partially accessible

Pablo Arboleda, Edward Hollis, Chris Leslie, Hussein Mitha, Marija Nemcenko, Evelina Simkute, Owen Hatherley

BRUT Europe


BRUT Europe is organised by Lithuanian artist Marija Nemcenko, Hungarian curator Anna Tudos and the Lithuanian Cultural Institute as part of the European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018. It is included in the Glasgow International arts festival 2018 programme and will take place on the 7th of May.

On the day of the event a series of short lectures will be given by participants from all over Europe, presenting their practices and highlighting different social and geographical aspects of the phenomenon of Modernist architecture. Throughout the day, participatory workshops will accompany the lectures, followed by a small reception and a screening of Chris Leslie’s film ‘Disappearing Glasgow’.

The event is linked to BRUT, Marija Nemcenko’s exhibition at the Fairfield Heritage Centre in Govan, Glasgow, which delves into the complexities of Modernist architecture, social housing and public spaces as they exist in UK and Lithuania as primary examples.

Complementary to Nemcenko’s exhibition, the event aims to explore the manifold representations of Modernist Architecture throughout Europe, with a focus on the complexities of Modernist Architecture, social housing and public spaces.

The themes covered by speakers will vary from ruins e.g. the iconic St. Peter’s Seminary in Scotland, Modernism, Destruction and Walter Benjamin, social art in former Eastern Bloc countries and the disappearing high-rises of Glasgow.

Free; booking required. Book via Eventbrite.

Thu 7 May, 3pm – 9pm

Back to 2018

Glasgow international 2018