About the part that art plays in a globalising society

Framer Framed

26 Nov 2022
14:00 - 16:00

Presentation: Letter to a Silk Road

Framer Framed welcomes you on Saturday 26 November at 14:00 to a presentation and discussion around the publication Letter to a Silk Road by Dutch artist Marjolijn Boterenbrood. Boterenbrood will discuss the research project, linking Kyrgyzstan and the Netherlands, with Malika Umarova and Fabienne Rachmadiev, moderated by Sandra Rottenberg.

REGISTER: Let us know if you are joining us
The event is free of charge and in English.

During the afternoon, Marjolijn Boterenbrood will present Letter to a Silk Road in Framer Framed and discuss the publication with Kyrgyz artist Malika Umarova and researcher Fabienne Rachmadiev. The publication emerged from Boterenbrood’s artistic research in Kyrgyzstan in 2019, which focused on the age-old connections that Kyrgyzstan has with the world, since it is situated at the heart of the old silk roads along which silk and other products, animals, seeds, religions, ideas but also deadly diseases travel.

The discussion on 26 November, with moderator Sandra Rottenberg, takes the publication as a starting point for a critical reflection on links between the Netherlands, Kyrgyzstan, and beyond, with the changing political contexts caused by the impacts of climate change and the war in Ukraine. Letter to a Silk Road functions as a catalyst for an open discussion, where the bringing together of different fields can lead to a broader mutual understanding.

This programme takes place in the context of Framer Framed’s exhibition To those who have no time to play by Gluklya (Natalia Pershina-Yakimanskaya). Part of the exhibition has been realised in collaboration with the Felt Art Studio, Issyk-Kul (Kyrgyzstan).

About the speakers

Marjolijn Boterenbrood is a visual artist based in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.

Malika Umarova is an artist, teacher and theatre-maker living and working in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan.

Fabienne Rachmadiev writes essays, fiction and art criticism. Her scholarly research focuses on art practices from Central Asia and other places that have a shared history of Russian imperialism and colonialism.

Sandra Rottenberg is an independent moderator, program maker, writer, podcast maker talkshow host and advisor.

Marjolijn Boterenbrood, Arteries (2022): Drawing from the publication Letter to a Silk Road

About the publication

In 2022 Marjolijn Boterenbrood published Letter to a Silk Road, as the outcome of an artistic research undertaken in Kyrgyzstan in 2019. Boterenbrood was part of an international team of botanists that looked at the rich biodiversity of this republic. Her artistic research focused on the connections that Kyrgyzstan has with the world since ages, since it is situated at the heart of the old silk roads along which silk and other products, animals, seeds, religions, ideas but also deadly diseases travel. And at the heart of political and climate change now.

At the core of the publication Letter to a Silk Road is a series of 18 drawings. On the maps of an old, colonial Soviet atlas of Kyrgyzstan, Boterenbrood drew images of botanic experiences in the Netherlands that are connected to this country, and she made drawings which are connected to the encounters with the rich nature and the people of Kyrgyzstan during the field trip. Along the project the use of the old Soviet atlas became even more delicate because of the invasion of Ukraine. (The precarious connection of the countries in this part of the world with Russia, became suddenly also evident for the rest of the world.)

The publication is an invitation to artists and artist collectives and other experts to think about an alternative silk road, an alternative Eurasia connection. It is an open work, so others can run off with it. It is a means of transport, an intermediate step, an invitation to react, to start a dialogue, and a collaboration.

‘Letter to a Silk Road’ has been realised with support from Mondrian Fonds and Prins Bernhard Cultuur Fonds. The project was developed in collaboration with Casco Art Institute, working for the commons.

Artist Talk / Book Launch / Ecology / Shared Heritage /


Exhibition: To those who have no time to play

A Solo Exhibition by Gluklya


Fabienne Rachmadiev

Writer, Researcher

Marjolijn Boterenbrood