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The Maleficent Power of Art. Сhamber sonata

04.06.2020 – 12.07.2020

Curator: Andrey Parshikov

You are in an unsafe space. Modified energies act here, which can carry out actions proceeding from forces of reverse direction or simply directed otherwise to the usual structured forces of light. You are warned. The sequence of halls and objects here is a syntactic diagram of a spell that brings to life a trinity of cultural codes: a system of baroque music, the proportions of Russian avant-garde and a panton of St. Petersburg’s city visuality. This project was made specifically for Northern Venice, where the baroque spirit is more alive than all living things and where it is possible to comprehend the problems of the present through it.

Have you noticed that you are in a St. Petersburg apartment from the beginning of the previous century, when the city was one of the world centers of occultism? Of course, you’ve noticed. But there are some things that are not so easy to notice. For example, surprisingly irregular proportions of the famous Black Square (1915). Here they are, in millimeters: 564 by 553 by 560 by 555. There is an opinion that this picture is the author’s visualization of the Heavenly city (Eden) from The Secret Doctrine by E.P. Blavatsky, and you, by the way, can stick to it, but this is not necessary. These proportions are given here in the painting Dirty, now you can clearly see them, and the painting no longer seems proportional, turning into a conceptual pictorial object, which in the ideal walls of the Myth gallery returns on the one hand the modernist sacredness of the white cube, and, on the other, raises questions about the creative act itself in Petersburg baroque environment. By the way, are you comfortable with the cleanliness of the room? And if you go out? It looks like microfragments of the Black Square. You don’t even have to go out. This compound pantone is here. On the walls you see abstract achromatic works. At the opening of the exhibition, as musical baroque pieces were per-formed, sculptures made of real dirty St. Petersburg snow, standing on tables covered with snow-white tablecloths, were spreading their literal clouding on white fabrics that absorbed the basic colors of local visibility.

A juxtaposition of problematics of the white cube and of the maximal staffageness, the fullfillness of the spaces of the Baroque era is reflected in the tapestry «Death blowing bubbles», which image is taken from the same-titled plaster work appearing on the ceiling of Holy Grave Chapel in Michaelsberg Abbey in Bamberg, and which reminds us that when the dark times come, we should dream with eyes wide open.

Now let’s turn to another secret of the exhibition. Have you ever thought that the surname of the patriarch of the Russian avant-garde contains an anagram «male witch»? Now, one of you will think again about the proportions of the Black square. The white field, that is, the canvas, of the picture is quite equable – 79.5 by 79.5 cm. Exactly the same proportions has the picture “Everything goes like oil on canvas”, which is simultaneously self-referential to its own medium and which is an integral part of the Genda Fluid’s spell, distributed in the form of an exhibition through the gallery’s halls, a spell that creates the corresponding harmony, including music, for a radical statement about cultural context of Russia and St. Petersburg.

Andrey Parshikov

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