Gallery Kvaka 22 and Belgrade Photo Month will be presenting the exhibition Connections -Contemporary Russian photography. Exhibition takes place from 25th of April until the 10th of May. Cultural Centre Kvaka 22 is open from Tuesday to Sunday from 3 pm to 8 pm. Entrance is free.
Elena Anosova, Anna Block, Ikuru Kuwajima, Varvara Kuzmina, Dmitry Lookianov, Olga Matveeva, Ivan Petrokovich, Maria Pokrovskaya, Ekaterina Pryanichnikova, Igor Samolet, Danila Tkachenko
Curated by Olga Matveeva
Modern Russia is still dominated by vertical connections, both on mental level and in power structures. Changing of that vector is a labor-consuming process. Artwork reveals its conflict component through observation and dialogue. One of the most poignant issues today is the search for one’s place in the intricate, sometimes turbulent, political and social world order.
Artists presented in the show are united by the close attention to the way how personal and social relationships are being transformed today and what consequences these changes bring to the individual and to society as a whole. The works of exhibitors are focused on comprehension of horizontal personal and social connections, as well as breaks in them, by addressing the subjects of a dialogue, memory, time, transformation, compromise.
The artists aspire to get away from direct documentary photography, working with a variety of presentation forms extending boundaries of statements and perceptions.
Danila Tkachenko addresses performative practice in photography. Setting fire to ruined villages, he initiates a discourse on the world, not just a Russian process that would never be the same again.
Farewell to the past, – inevitably looks to the future. Dmitry Lookianov addresses the theme of bedroom suburbs of the city architectural design, studying sterile aesthetics of the new mode of life. The connections in time can be interpreted by the artists on deeply personal examples.
Ekaterina Pryanichnikova makes memory patterns and self-regulating social connections, using organic material in a borderline state of alive and inanimate nature.
Elena Anosova goes further with the concept of her studies: watching woman’s identity change and distortion in the closed institutions. In her work she reproduces women’s prisoners’ badges, deformed and changed by time.
The theme of escapism on different levels is revealed in the works of Igor Samolet, Ivan Petrokovich, Anna Block and Olga Matveeva. Artists are looking for ways to escape from the dominant social and political processes through corporality to nature, analyzing personal perception of the conventional borders of reality: intermediate phases of conscience and body, life and death, fact and fiction. An appeal to classical Russian culture and historical figures initiates a discourse around links at the level of an archetype. Maria Pokrovskaya in her work “The Tradition of good taste” in a playful form makes a dialogue with consumer society, building her study into visual context of Russian classical painting and Ampir, Stalin era monumental art. Ikuru Kuwajima is a Japanese photographer who has been a Russian resident for several years. In his work “I, Oblomov” the author conceptualizes mental connections with Russia, through classical Russian literature. Varvara Kuzmina creates mythology around the figure of Jury Gagarin that became sacred in Russian conscience. The author studies the place of the cosmonaut’s tragic death, linking the recreated artefacts into a specific planet system.
Dragana Kostica is the Belgrade-based editor in chief and founder of Still in Belgrade art, culture and club scene magazine. She holds a Master of Arts in Cultural Policy and Management in Arts (MA of Arts) and a Bachelor degree in Archaeology.