Edge Group / Projects Edge In The Back Text by Albena Mihaylova – Bendji 1993

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Text by Albena Mihaylova – Bendji EDGE IN THE BACK installation

The photo series Edge in the Back marks the end of the group's presence on the art scene as a group. The core that carried out the last exhibitions of the Edge after the departure of Paul Albert and Igor Budnikov, after the parting of Kelbechev, Kolyo and Mitovski, starts to disintegrate. In the mid-1990s, Albena, Nadya, then Emo and Monica stayed in Switzerland one after the other as resident artists at the invitation of the BINZ39 Foundation. Upon their return, they realize the contrast of the two realities. The culture shock awakens professional problems, but also many personal ones that have been left unattended until then. The photo session of Edge in the Back takes place in the yard of the Exposition of Mexican Arts. The Edges stand naked to the waist in front of a white wall, as if exposed to firing squad. Photographer Nikolay Lautliev presses the camera trigger. The Edge in the Back installation was created specifically for the annual "International Photographic Meetings" in Plovdiv, 1993.

See video from the project

The challenge of the Edge group to turn its back was not aimed at the audience

This time, the challenge of the Edge group to turn its back was not aimed at the audience, although many thought so. We turned our backs on ourselves, on the idea of community and collectivity. I felt some disappointment in the group. Our expectations differed from what our reality offered us. We wanted more from the world. The mid-90s, being in Bulgaria, a country from the former socialist camp, was neither the right time nor the right place to implement our projects. The process of opening of the archives, reconstructing and interpreting them had begun. But many artefacts were withheld or replaced. There were already publications about the pioneers of the “avant-garde” in our country, knowingly or unknowingly wrong. This irritated and divided the Edges. Individualism in the group prevailed. In November and December 1994, the photo series Edge in the Back is presented at the exhibition N-Forms, organized by Soros Art Center at the Rayko Alexiev Gallery, Sofia. Black and white photographs, printed on canvas and stretched on 120 cm x 90 cm frames, were hung in a block high up on the hall. They had a powerful influence, as an indivisible whole. Edge in the Back was our last group work.


Albena Mihaylova, Emil Mirazchiev, Igor Budnikov, Ivaylo Grigorov, Monika Romenska, Rumen Zhekov.