No Aliens Trespassing
(Russian Interactive Landscape)
This project was first time represented at XL-gallery, Moscow, 10.02-27.02.00
It's A Long Wау То The Top (If You Wаnnа Rock'N'Roll)
It's time for the game. Tonight Sergei Shutov presents an artwork, which actually is a good old table hockey. On the way from the toy store to the gallery the board game has lost all hockey players, puck and goal, replaced by blue fir-trees and cartoon-like extraterrestrials. At the same time the game acquired the new rules and the new sense; both are stated in the exhibition title «No alien trespassing».
Really, the plastic figures of the aliens, unlike the fir trees, are impaired of moving across the game field; nor do they play. These white and lovely, extraterrestrials hardly defend anything, but themselves from attacks of the interactive forest.
In a broader sense the new work by Shutov is a condolence to the current situation in local contemporary art, as the artist sees it- For many years Shutov has pictured astronauts, spaceships and UFO pilots, either as themes or as decorative elements. He uas creating remixes of classical Soviet movies on his Пас long before every next artist with a Hie camera went into video art. He uas ahead of many younger colleagues to work in the then emerging techno clubs. He even tried to revise the cornerstone (or rather a public cliche) of the old Russian art - forest landscape - by means of painting. So this way or that he uas always considered alien by his colleagues artists and the art critics; being sometimes not enough articulate, often inexplicable and almost never appreciated. Unfortunately Shutov has yet remained an alien. Or, to put it precisely, there's still (yet, hitherto) no alien trespassing around here (excluding the FENSO group members, whom I'd rather label as the humans who were once abducted).
I hope that Shutov's long time pursuit of infecting the local art context with the alien virus, would not be a waste effort. Thanks God, much of uhat he has been doing, seems absolutely natural for the emerging new generation of artists. Though his new solo show has a somewhat melancholic autobiographical hint: there's no alien trespassing here, too. Insteadi the aliens are pressed by viewers-driven Russian interactive landscape, senseless and merciless.
Exhibition "Behind the Red Horizon" (in the framework of International Art Program "Moscow-Warsaw. Warsaw-Moscow"), National Center for Contemporary Art, Moscow, 25.03-1.05.05
International Biennale for Contemporary Art, National Gallery - Veletrzny Palac, Prague, 14.06-11.09.05
Curators: Alexandra Obukhova&Milena Orlova
The contemporary art situation in Russia , as well as recent social conditions, can remind us of a large, haunted mansion. It is haunted by the ghosts of the recent past. The monumental buildings of the Soviet-era bureaucracy which once rested on the foundation of a solid hierarchy (high floors = high officials, underground = all kinds of heterodoxies) seem to have been left empty for not such a long time. Now, they have been renovated and populated by new generation of apparatchiks. The past has become the future, time has moved on, and our perspectives are not quite clear. Today one needs a special gift in order to see the essence of social phenomena and everyday occurrences, which remain hidden from ordinary people.
This show in Prague presents a good chance to highlight those Russian artists who have this gift of clairvoyance, and the ability to visualize all that is secret, hidden and concealed. Our choice was not based on artistic generations, styles or movements. We have chosen to invite older masters, who began their career in the 1970s, as well as new figures on the Moscow and Saint Petersburg art scenes.
Aidan Salakhova (Russia)
Alexey Kallima ( Russia )
Anatoly Osmolovsky ( Russia )
Andrey Monastyrsky, Vadim Zakharov ( Russia )
David Ter-Oganyan ( Russia )
Igor Makarevich, Elena Elegina (Russia)
Ira Waldron ( Russia )
Irina Korina ( Russia )
Konstantin Batynkov (Russia)
Larissa Zvezdochetova (Russia)
Natalia Pershina-Yakimanskaya (Tsaplia) (Russia)
Nikita Alexeev (Russia)
Sergey Shutov (Russia)
Tatyana Hengsler (Russia)
Vladislav Mamyshev-Monro (Russia)
Vladislav Efimov, Aristarkh Chernyshov (Russia)