SBP4 / PTRK / 1999
Solo exhibition in 11.12 Gallery, Winzavod, Moscow
January – February 2020.
In collaboration with the Samoe Bol’shoe Prostoe Chislo – The Largest Prime Number or SBP4 music band.
The project was dedicated to the memory of the First and Second Chechen Wars. The memories of witnesses and soldiers were gathered together and turned into a total installation at an abandoned military base near Moscow, Russia, where the video of the SBP4’s song was shot.
We were interested in the relations between people in this project: a “small” inconspicuous person vs. some global thing – a society, a government, a state, a homeland, a war. We wanted to show the people’s personal, subjective, and unique stories and, through the prism of each experience, question the need for any war.
The project has two parts.
The first part is a compilation of the veterans of the First and Second Chechen Wars’ interviews. We asked the veterans’ relatives and close friends to be interviewers, collected 20 videos, and used 17 of them.
The second part of the project is a total public installation at an abandoned military facility near Moscow (Kosterevo-1, Vladimirskyay region). The most notable quotes from the interviews were used carefully so that tearing them out of context wouldn’t twist their meaning. With volunteers consisting of our interviewers, we transferred those quotes to the walls and various objects inside some buildings of the military facility. Thus, we turned this place into a total installation, the semblance of a giant book with the people’s memories, and at the same time, the representation of a collective portrait of a person who went to war. This project aimed not only aimed at remembering the important moments of our country’s recent history but also as an attempt to focus on trivial and eternal themes like patriotism, a man at war, a soldier and an order, duty to the motherland, homeland, and a government.
The exhibition of the project consisted of 7 parts:
- Video and photo documentation of the inscriptions
- The targets with three quotes
- The printed transcripts of the interviews
- Audio recordings of the interviews
- Backstage photos and artifacts