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Московская международная биеннале современного искусства

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Ultra-New Materiality

 
Ultra-New Materiality

event site and dates

Moscow Museum of Modern Art, 17, Ermolaevsky per.
22 september 2009 — 25 october 2009

Curator: Andrey Parshikov

Organizers:
Moscow Department of Culture
Moscow Museum of Modern Art
Contemporary City Foundation

Artists:

  • Alina & Jeff Bliumis
  • Dmitriy Bulnygin
  • Alina Gutkina
  • Yakov Kazhdan
  • Elena Kovylina
  • Eleonore de Montesquiou
  • Ksenia Peretrukhina
  • “PROVMYZA” group
  • Yevgeniy Fiks
  • “Found Clothes Factory” group
  • Marina Chernikova
  • Masha Sha

About the project:

The exhibition, "Ultra-New Materiality", is a demonstration of the critical sentimental tendency on the Moscow art scene. The name harks to the German new materiality of the 1920s, and to Pierre Restany, the New Realist of the 1960s.

The art situation in post-war Europe was rather universal, and is applicable to the situation in Moscow today. The trend towards total pessimism and relativistic attitudes exist in confrontation with modernist attitudes in a highly hermetic culture. Contemporary art once again exists as a constant conflict of the abstract with the concrete, the general with the private, and the exalted with the routine. Formalistic conceptions are not capable of describing reality, and only emerge as a decorative strategy. Thus, the most interesting moment in contemporary art is the turn to the person, to a sense of concreteness, and to the private emotion of the created image. This is only possible thanks to the return of the emotional essence of the artwork, and the most potent are seen in time-based arts, one of which is video. For a long time contemporary artists often looked to the floor, to the ceiling, at various objects, but now the person, per se, is increasingly in the artist’s sights.

Mastering time, characteristic for the contemporary art process, is closer primarily to the problem of restitution of emotions because the conservative age-old work with space, still realised in different forms of art, is no longer able to quickly react to the creation of new aesthetic and ethical parameters. This form of artistic activity is devoid of the necessary mobility, and therefore, the possibility to make a new and accelerating pace. This doesn't mean that artists who work with the mastering of time are forgoing space. Rather, it becomes secondary in relation to time, and to the duration of feeling.

Currently, a person's psyche in the post-informational society is comparable to the psyche of the hieroglyphic ethnos where the recognition of a symbol during the exchange or reading of information is optimized and accelerated. This is in contrast to an ethnos with different writing systems. The contemporary person reads information from the monitor on the table, and sees icons and doesn't waste time to interpret. He very quickly recognizes the symbols and any semantic element. The speed with which an image is recognized is especially important and pertinent. And this is video’s main task. This art form is the main programme in "Ultra-New Materiality", and is very important today where we see a mass migration of contemporary artists to cinema, which they find to be a more adequate genre for expression. Just like when Yves Klein in Europe completed the decomposition of painting with its anthropometry, now we see that video’s potential as a media worthy of comprehension has been basically exhausted. This is reflected in the programme where some artworks are no longer video, but are films with a very clear script and developed narrative. It's precisely this genre which is most adequate as the conception of "Ultra-New Materiality".

The main principles of this project are: 1) art as a producer of images that perceive and describe reality; 2) the convenient reading and demonstration of the artwork; 3) maximum proximity of art to a concrete person; 4) and realism as a media materiality. Is the hamburger which we see on TV more real that the hamburger which we hold in our hands? Precisely at the sunset of the screen epoch we see a new wave of media art. One of the most important tendencies in art today is the effort to create images that are more real and more concrete. Leaving behind from post-modern irony, pop-art kitsch, elevated formalism, and the beloved Moscow "game in corporeality", young Russian video artists and those from the Russian post-diaspora have demonstrate this trend in the framework of the "Ultra-New Materiality", which is made possible by The Contemporary City Foundation.

Andrey Parshikov

Supported by: Interros Publishing program


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