Iliyana Nedkova (Born 1968, Sofia. Since 1996, Liverpool and Edinburgh) is a curator, writer and producer with over 25 years of professional experience which started at Open Society Foundations Network led by the financier and philanthropist George Soros. Ever since, Iliyana has pioneered, managed and produced over 250 curatorial projects and initiatives on behalf of cultural organisations based in Europe, UK and USA.
Her current positions include associate curatorships at CONJUNCTION public art curatorial collective; Peace & Justice Scotland; Colony of Artists, Edinburgh; Cutting Edge Theatre, Edinburgh; P21 Gallery, London; Screen.dance Festival Scotland; Friends of Pskov, Perth; Bulgarian Centre Scotland and criss-crossings collective.
Recently, Iliyana held associate curatorships at New Media Scotland; Moray House School of Education and Sport, the University of Edinburgh; Horsecross Arts, Perth; Stills Centre for Photography, Edinburgh; ARC Projects, Edinburgh and Sofia; Foundation for Art and Creative Technology, Liverpool; Soros Centre for the Arts, Sofia; and Video Data Bank, Chicago and New York.
Iliyana is a board member of Colony of Artists (since 2014), Friends of Pskov (since 2017) and Traditional Dance Forum Scotland (since 2021). She has also served as the Honorary Cultural Attache at the Consulate of the Republic of Bulgaria in Scotland.
Iliyana is a regular contributor of talks, papers and critical writing to conferences, books, blogs and independent periodical publications including Edgework, MAP, n.paradoxa, Read More, a-n and Ubiquity.
Her curatorial projects and critical writing explore the relationship between public art, activism and creative practices; visual and performing arts; contemporary art and new media art. Her research interests include artist’s moving image culture, literature in translation and archival museum practices.
The works of women artists including Madelon Hooykaas, Katherina Radeva, Erica Jong, Maria Kassimova-Moisset, Nan Shepherd, Albena Mihaylova Bendji, Margaret Morris, Diana Savova, Nina Czegledy, Mare Tralla, Marlene Millar, Alla Georgieva and Federica Marangoni have also been the focus of her curatorial practice.
Iliyana holds a MPhil in Curating Contemporary Art from Liverpool John Moores University and a MLitt in English and American Studies, as well as in History and Theory of Culture from the University of Sofia.
Currrently, Iliyana is undertaking curatorial research and professional development following open calls for support:
- Digital Curatorial Residencies 2021 at the Guesthouse Project, Cork and Studio Alight, Gothenburg (as part of CONJUNCTION)
- UNIDEE Residency programme 2021 Groundwork for Embedded Arts Practice at Cittadellarte – Fondazione Pistoletto, Biella (as part of CONJUNCTION)
- Translating Balkan Rhapsody Residency at Next Page Foundation Literature and Translation House Residency Centre, Sofia funded by i-Portunus. Supporting Creative Mobility
- Freelance Curatorial Practice Research supported by Creative Scotland: Sustaining Creative Development Fund for Individuals in 2020/21
- Our Edinburgh Programme in 2021 led by Sara McHaffie, Amina. The Muslim Women’s Resource Centre, Glasgow
- Not Yet Written Stories. Women Artists in Central and Eastern Europe in September 2021 at Academy of Fine Arts, Warsaw
- Reboot & Regroup Programme by Arts, Fundraising & Philanthropy and Cause4 in 2021 at the University of Leeds
Throughout 2020, Iliyana was awarded bursaries and scholarships to undertake the following courses and research:
- Commissioning and Curating Contemporary Public Art at the University of Gothenburg in partnership with Public Art Agency Sweden and the University of Arts Helsinki
- Here to Stay Programme as part of #AllOfUs Care Campaign for Black, Asian, ethnically diverse and migrant cultural sector
- PEN World Translation Day Programme, English PEN, London
- Poetry, Grief and Healing Programme led by Yvonne Reddick, University of Central Lancashire, Preston
- CapitaLiterature 2020 Programme led by Sarah Coolidge, Elizabeth Kostova Foundation, New York
- TEND to Wellbeing led by Lou Platt, Two Destination Language, Scotland
- DanceLive Writing Programme led by Róisín O’Brien as part of DanceLive 2020 Festival, Citymoves Dance Agency, Aberdeen