Albena Baeva

Albena Baeva was born in 1983 in Sofia, Bulgaria. In 2010 she obtained a degree in the Digital Art master programme at the National Academy of Art in Sofia, Bulgaria. Since 2008 she has realized various workshops in Sofia, as well as one in Amsterdam and one in Berlin. They included workshops on “programming reactive live visuals”, multichannel audio installations, “re-discovering sound and instrument building” and an animation workshop. Since 2008 she made different exhibitions in Bulgaria but also abroad – in Italy and Finland.

Baeva works in the fields of interactive design, experimental video, sound art and performance art. She is
the co-organizer of Dorkbot Sofia and Ignite Sofia and is the co-founder of Reaktiv. She uses open source software and DIY practices for building new musical instruments and interactive installations for urban spaces and galleries. In 2009 Albena Baeva founded the Runabout project, which was a platform for communication and interaction between artists and musicians. Her work includes interactive videos and sound performances developed mostly as part of the Runabout project. In 2011 she won the international prize for contemporary art awarded by the Essl Museum, Vienna, Austria and the VIG Special Invitation. Works of Albena Baeva were shown in Austria, Germany, Italy, Romania and Bulgaria. In 2012 she worked with Derida Dance Company and created interactive generative video environment for their dance performance ARTeFACT. In 2013 the performance was nominated for the Ikar Award in Bulgaria. In 2013 Baeva created an interactive video for the theatrical performance “Eyes of The Others” directed by Mariy Rosen and written by the young Bulgarian playwright Ivan Dimitrov. The performance was nominated for the Bulgarian theatrical Asker awards in 2013.

Currently, she is working on
Azamen, a large-scale project made within the framework of the Runabout project. It is an interactive dance performance that began in 2012. The two dancers in Azamen are equipped with a pair of wireless sensor costumes  that connect their movements to a computer. Their bodies are thus turned into musical instruments that are capable of capturing sounds and words, playing them over and over again, modulating and transforming them until they create the perfect audio environment for their dance. For Baeva, contemporary art is by definition interactive. She uses play-like elements to involve audiences in her works. In these works, communication between the audience and the work of art, between performers, the music and visuals is central. Baeva participates actively in every stage of the creation of her works. Drawing, programming, soldering to the physical work of building different constructions and objects inspire her to find new and unconventional combinations of materials, media and functions. Through this process she creates multiple layers of meaning.