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December 8/2014 — February 28/2015

SHREDDING MAPS

 

First project event — performance by Olya Mykhailiuk «just went away» — was held in GEDOK gallery on December 8. It was an attempt to tell about events in Ukraine, conditions and feelings, which Ukrainians had to go through during the last year. Performance was based on reflection of personal experience — participation in different stages of Maidan, impressions from visiting Crimea and Donbas.
On the monitor we see the way — 40 kilometers, traversed by the author of performance. Approximately such distance was passed by people escaping from the shelling in Lugansk, whom Olya met in August in the railway station «Komunarsk». «After 3 months in Kyiv I decided to walk 40 km. This field reminded me The East. I didn’t know where I would go. I felt only that I couldn’t stop. It was cold. I passed across different conditions ----euphoria-faith-meditation — fight-fatigue-pain-faith----». The names of Ukrainian cities and short notes-explanations Olya writes on the gallery walls — in Ukrainian, and low and neutral voice translates them to German. With a coal and a chalk text spills to the walls, windowsills, then — to the street. At the end the same neutral voice in German gives out statistics about Donbas today, after that viewers are invited to paint letters, which will be transferred to the inhabitants of Donbas and art museums in Kramatorsk and Berdyansk.
After the event, people talked a lot, wrote letters, drew, asked questions and were ready to answer, discuss. «The audience in general was an audience that usually does not have any contact to this region, — tells Juliane Rahn (art group CADAM), who helped in preparation and holding the performance. — People here much more need real stories instead of abstract assumptions and judgments, attempts to combine single general «truth». Carlotta Brunetti (artist, curator): «A heart touching subject was performed in a very seriously and calm manner. For me the cold and white landscape showed the situation clearly — desperate search for homeland and community. No one there — just you on your way». Letters were addressed to peaceful people in the Eastern Ukraine. People remembered their grandmas’ stories about the Second World War, talked about love, prayers and self-immolation, about historical breaks and ordinary human friendship. From their hearts — by their hands — wrote the words for somebody who waits there, who will touch these letters and, maybe, will write the answers. Nowadays letters from Munich are already in Kramatorsk. We hope, they will support, give understanding and faith. Therefore, we expand geography.

 

Next project event — «Materials», which was presented on December 16 in the art space Leonrodhaus — is a combination (or rather, the confrontation) of video-installation and installation.
The word «materials» has more than a dozen of definitions. One of them — summation of ideas, facts and dates. Particularly in the meaning «journalists’ materials» or «materials of security services» this word was used most frequently in Ukrainian context during the last year. Such materials — secret and not really, objective and distorted, presented by different sides of the same war — are shown in the video, which focuses on the artistic details of information war, unfolded by Russia, which transformed in the real war; in particular, on questions on annexation of Crimea, shot down Boeing-777, and also using of terms «fascism» and «Nazism» in Ukrainian and Russian media. Authors don’t do any conclusions. They give to everyone the possibility to choose on their own, whom to believe in this story, observing symbols, gestures and grimaces, listening to the intonation, analyzing facts. Video is translated from the big black screen. TV, floor lamp, sitting area. All symbols of home coziness. Only the news doesn’t fit to the general atmosphere of well-being, but to switch to another channel is impossible. Besides this video installation, in neighbor space, which looks like a kitchen, you can watch «kitchen interviews». One of them is a speech of Lisbon journalist Tiago, whom we accidentally met in March in Crimea. Ukrainian journalists could only record stories in retelling, as it was a time of broken cameras, destroyed flashcards and kidnapped authors. In the last room — a desk and a text of Yuri Andrukhovych — the allocation to German community, with facts and arguments, based on personal experience. Besides documentary, videoart and texts, Shredding maps includes authentic materials. In the separate gallery — on the opposite side — there is a small installation. Coal, chalk and salt. All ones — from Donbas. And each one has own, very personal trajectory of getting to Munich gallery.

 

The final part of the project, «Internal territories» — exhibition, discussion and video screening — in cultural centre Giesinger Bahnhof (February 26-28). How to remain open to the world and at the same time protect one‘s internal territory? How to avoid hurting your neighbour? How to define the boundaries that set you apart? This situation is so fragile (see synonyms: vulnerable, delicate, gentle, weak, and easily broken). What is the difference between delicate and easily broken, tradition and conservatism, expression and hysteria, harmony and compromise and, as a result, beauty and ugliness? From which starting point and by which means can we perceive ourselves and the motherland in order to find some answers to these questions? Therefore, want do these word combinations mean for each of us personally.

 

Territory I
Myroslav Vayda: I'm returning to the painting, after almost ten years break. It's abstract painting, in which I try to find myself. Mainly through the colour. I haven't built the common thread (concept), instead there was (and still exists) an effort to stay maximally open and honest, do not «block» myself. Formally, this visual line-length is built like by itself, unconsciously. I just go up every day in the studio and paint. The place, where I am now, the people, of course, influence my work — as well as situation in my country. I don't try now and didn't try before to isolate myself from it. The working title of the project is double — «Root crops. Parts of the body». Would it be final or not — I can't say exactly.

 

Territory ІІ
Vitaliy Kokhan: When you are going somewhere, in any case you will be surprised, because you never know for sure, who and what is waiting for you there. When geography becomes material, you can touch it. Everywhere people live with their own ideas about the world. In a professional sense I always assign myself a series of tasks, the results in the physical world transformed, finding their special balance. Naturally, new desires appear, and they dictate the activities and daily routine. You are already inside. Physical contact in every particular case gives birth to the result. When you immersed, the issue is already not “what”, but “how”. This time I chose creation of objects as the most unconstrained form. I never know how to do, but know how not to do, and I proceed from it.

 

Territory ІІI
Olya Mykhailiuk: Distance/Destiny/Destination (or in Ukrainian Відстані/Долі/Пункти призначення). These words formed a trinity somewhere in the subconscious. It was a condition, when you start to play with the most important things, to compose Tetrises and to admire the form, because meanings are too scaring. If you do not cheat, even common words in the dictionary compose an epitaph. I'm thinking do we become closer, reducing the distances, how the distances affect the destinies and what will be the final destinations. And while I imagine, weather, books, places and people change, and with them — the meanings of the words. I'd like as soon as possible to see events in Ukraine not only from a distance in space, but also in time. The first time I was in classrooms of Giesinger Bahnhof, I felt like a bad student. Everybody wants to hear clear answers, but I don’t know them. My project is about a danger of a long pause. A video (in cooperation with Birthe Blauth), an object, an installation-text.