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Zenko Bogdan

After finishing my studies and a brief venture into the state theater system in Romania at the Hungarian State Theater of Cluj - I started working in the independent performing art scene of Budapest at Jurányi Art Incubator House. Later through some local and international projects I had the chance to work for the Trust for Mutual Understanding (NY) and Philip Arnoult, founding director of the CITD, Baltimore. Parallel with these day time jobs I started to freelance as a director's assistant and as a producer which slowly overtook and became full-time bringing me to funding my own production collective, Universal Pleasure Factory in 2016.

Working in performing arts from the very bottom, moving up the way to full time employee, I understood how I was educated into believing in the hierarchy of theater that still heavily sits on the Eastern European professional field. What I naturally accepted at school - being frontally told what to do, read, how to act, which questions are acceptable which should never be asked - I could observe being implemented in every aspect of the projects that I had been involved in. There is always someone who represents the ones who organise and who want to say something, they search for the means (artists and their work) which helps them deliver that message to an audience that hopefully is there. This scheme appeared at the Art Incubator where I worked, trying to support the development of emerging independent artist and at all the festivals where I was in and around programming. The ones who were almost always outside of focus were the artists - and most importantly the young ones - and the questions that were never asked were around the relevance of any of the work that we were doing. For me all topics of Reshape show the desire to stir these narratives up, let it be about art, economy, social infrastructure etc. we need to finally directly address these issues, by questioning ourselves and our own system.

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