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Anecdotes002

During last two months I have been working on a project in Kolomna, a small town not far from Moscow. Being a resident in art-residency Artkommunalka I collected local funny and sad stories about neighbors and made an one hour long video. Unexpectedly I found that this collection gives  a portrait of Russian life during last more than 50 years.

Installation will be open for public  June 6th – July 16th. Opening on June 6th at Artkommunalka museum, Kolomna, Russia

Here are some photos from the opening:

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trailer from video:

 

Text of Curators (Mariya Udovychenko & Margarita Bard)

Communal Anecdotes_Kravtsova 2015.jpg

English translation

Artist Ekaterina Kravtsova is traveling from one art residency to another, researching local cultural codes and social paradigms. Last two months she spent in Kolomna making a project Communal Anecdotes. The main principle of the work is direct collaboration with local community, which perfectly fits into the concept of museum-art residency Artkommunalka. Erofeev and Others.

Project of Ekaterina Kravtsova is a research of spoken folklore, particularly anecdotes, related to communal life and neighbors. The aspect of common mode of life surrounded by number of myths was the reason of creation visual and notional symbols, which are integral parts of Russian culture. For the project Communal Anecdotes the author gathered real stories of people from Kolomna. Her respondents were people on the streets, the museum team and it’s permanent visitors. All together these anecdotes, funny and scary, absurd and sad, turned into a kind of encyclopedia of Russian life, epic narrative which reveals the whole layers of the Soviet and post-Soviet reality.

Researching those narration made the author think of man’s place in the system of values. Soviet society thought globally, forming huge utopian ideas of future and comparing that one human life loses it’s value. Despite of capitalist paradigm we have now the man’s place is still unsteadily. Society continues to represent behavior models and relations which are shaped for years and rooted deeply into conscious.

As a result there is a variety of neighbors’ fates, whose common existents give birth to curious situations or real human drama. Ekaterina Kravtsova managed to fix the diversity of life twists and turns united by the main character – an individual, in spite of all the difficulties has remained optimism, warmth and attention to people who lives nearby. Characters of the project show mutual support mechanisms. This is the key to survival in the most ambiguous situations

(from the article by Mariya Udovychenko)

 

However you can ask how spoken folklore connects to our perspective of visual art? When the listener transforms into the viewer, or listening viewer or viewing listener? Exactly here visitors will be surprised by art delicacy. According to author’s idea all these unpublished stories create fabric of visual-verbal image, part of mystical space of video installation. You are invited to ritual philosophical tea party, while objects on the table are moving by invisible mag like during séance. Voices of inhabitants of the city- microcosm transform into spiritual essences, guardian angels of the place. Obviously all those simple human joys and fears, shame and woe, love and madness, kindness and betrayal, humor and hate, force and weakness, all it all the whole human comedy, the whole emotion of human life are is the main and valuable so much to be in the focus of high contemporary art.

Margarita Bard

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For Museums Day, 16th of May we organized a cross-cooking collaborative project between communal kitchens in Kolomna /Russia/ and Berlin / Germany/. Coordinators: Katya Craftsova /Kolomna/ & Moana Mayall /Berlin/ One location – in Kolomna – was an art residency kitchen with public involved. We were cooking traditional soviet meal – herring under the coat. Why soviet? Because art residency Artcommunalka is a museum of soviet 60s. During event we were doing projections on the wall in our library from another kitchen in Berlin.

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There are photos from Berlin taken by Moana Mayall below. Kitchen in Berlin was located at Greenhouse Berlin: Gottlieb-Dunkel strasse 43-44 / 4th floor. Thanks everyone involved!

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November-January, 2014-2015 I spent at ZK/U residency in Berlin doing research about spam e-mails. I like those stories as kind of folklore and often highly appreciate creativity of their authors. Unbelievable, everyone knows that those stories are fake and still many people are sending money to scammers. Video PLEASE, REMOVE ME FROM THE LIST as work in progress of the research was shown at OPENHOUS event at ZK/U (Berlin) and during my personal screening at Z-bar (Berlin), thanks to curator Klaus W. Eisenlohr and Cordula Gdaniec. Several stills from video:

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Some photos from the opening at ZK/U. For the installation a big plate with spaghetti was cooked and put on the table opposite of TV with film. In Russia when someone tells you lie we say they put spaghetti on your ears. 001 002 003

trailer from video:

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Project SALE was presented during Night of Arts events in Moscow on 3-d of November. This time it’s called SALE. Free Zone, because apart from video screening there was open online chat with artists. The installation with a computer and a screen inside was set up in a shopping mall (ATRIUM) in the center of Moscow supported by Moscow Cultural Department and Shopping mall ATRIUM. Spectators could choose a video piece and watch it on 8 big screens in open space of the shopping mall, which usually display advertisement. Screens were visible from all 3 floors of the building. I suppose near 10 000 people saw the project and more than 100 personally participate in it.

SALE. Free Zone. ARTISTS:
1. Letícia Bertagna, Angélica Freitas, Janaína Kremer / Brazil
2. Elida Brenna Linge / Norway
3. Margarita Vazquez Ponte / Scotland, Spain
4. Elya Veremjanina / Russia
5. Courtney Grant / Great Britain
6. Chiman Dangi / India, Brydee Rood / New Zealand
7. Maria Kapajeva / Estonia, Great Britain
8. Ekaterina Craftsova / Russia
9. Markus Moestue / Norway
10. Alecia Neo / Singapore
11. Kristin Orav / Estonia
12. Georgina Porteous / Scotland
13. Alexandr Raevski / Moldova
14. Brydee Rood, Orchestra of Spheres / New Zealand
15. Karolina Rychlik / Poland
16. Emilija Skarnulyte / Lithuania
17. Mari Sokol / Russia
18. Tatiana Stadnichenko / Russia, Mark Baugh-Sasaki / USA, Christine Swintak / Canada
19. Bettina Furnee / The Netherlands
20. Pablo Fernandez Zapata / Colombia, Germany
21. Gabriella Hirst / Australia
22. Olga Jurgenson / Russia, Great Britain
23. Elena Gavrish / Germany

a map of our trekking trip to Fan Mountains (with 9 nights in camps), 17.07-27.07.2014

a map of our trekking trip to Fan Mountains (with 9 nights in camps), 17.07-27.07.2014

Doing trekking in Fan Mountains, Tajikistan in July 2014 I was very interested in temporary architecture of mountain herders and their lifestyle. Local people stay in the villages during winter but as soon as warm days come they move to summer locations, higher in the mountains to accompany their sheep and goats flocks. Most men had moved to Russia (or particularly to Moscow) to earn money. So here in the mountains the place where women and children live.

Here are some photos of summer contractions build by Tajik herders, I visited.

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