| || Olga Bozhko |
EliKuka (Evgeny Kukoverov, Oleg Eliseev)
Irina Korina (provided by XL Gallery)
Curator: Georgy Ostretsov
Contemporary art, existing, as it seems, without borders, is a perfect example of internationalisation and globalisation. Nevertheless, a single global art system does not make the question of a national artistic language disappear. This question is particularly acute for Russian art, which is in the process of active, but not yet completed, entry onto the world art-scene. This process entails many temptations and enticements, and objectively confronts Russian artists with the question of the balance between internationally convertible issues and the clarity of a locally conditioned artistic language. In this situation turning to the traditions of the art of landscape is particularly relevant.
Landscape, as the clearest indicator of a specific national school of painting, entered the history of Art in the 17th century. We are well aware of Italian landscape, Dutch, German Ц from Caspar David Friedrich to Max Liebermann, French Ц Camille Corot, Jean-François Millet, van Gogh, English Ц William Turner, and, of course, Russian landscape beginning with Venetsianov and up to our days, through Levitan, Shishkin, Ayvazovsky... Today, in the era of great eclectic post-modernism, after Chernobyl, September 11 and the Internet revolution, the art of landscape may appear to be an anachronism. However, 12 Moscow artists have taken the risk to assume that it is not so. They turn to the theme of landscape as the richest resource of imagery and artistic language. In participating in the exhibition "Russian Landscape", the artists concern themselves with the metaphysical interpretation of the landscape, as well as with new practices of artistic expression. They use different techniques: from a light bulb fixed in the middle of a canvas, to ceramic bas-reliefs. Their paintings and panels, all the same size, standing shoulder to shoulder, form a round dance or the front line of contemporary Russian art.
Translation: Pavel Glebov