Exhibition "Food as a social machine". Part 1.


01.06 - 01.08.2017

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The Central Volga Branch of the National Centre for Contemporary Arts (NCCA) affiliated to ROSIZO

With the support of the company «RUSS OUTDOOR»

urator - Nelya Korzhova

Artists: Yinon Avior (Israel), Yuri Albert (Russia), Stefano Bergamo (Italy), Dmitry Bulnygin (Russia), German Vinogradov (Russia), Oleg Elagin (Russia), Leyla Karipova (Russia), Johanna Carlin (Sweden), Sergey Katran (Russia), Olga Kisseleva (France), Edith Lajos (Germany), Pier Paolo Patty (Italy), Vito Pace (Italy), Vladimir Potapov (Russia), Natasha Steinert (Russia), Zoya Falkova (Kazakhstan), Thomas C. Chung (Germany), Ellen Skafvenstedt (Sweden), Henrik Ekesiöö (Norway), Alexandra Ianchenko.


During the summer of 2017 we are pleased to present the next exhibition of our multi-year project "Street as a museum - a museum as a street" http://www.ncca.ru/en/programs.text?filial=9&id=57. This time, the focus of the project's attention is the theme of food. Food - the first association with the Factory-kitchen, a large mechanized public catering enterprise in the 1930s in the USSR, and now a monument of constructivism in Samara, on the basis of which our branch was established. In the era when kitchen factories were being created, the word "feed" meant also to instill a new idea of the life order. In our time, this trend is gaining momentum again. The main innovations in the distribution of food (as well as other resources) of the last century lie in the field of mechanization and advertising. Factories for making food and its promotion in the mass media have merged. People should trust the advertisement before they know the taste. Our project itself works on advertising media, in this it is a surprise and a good opportunity for dialogue with the viewer, who is offered a free product where traditionally there is a sale.

Since June 1 at the pavilion of the city's pavilions, you can see the first ten works of artists from Russia and Europe, out of twenty selected on the basis of an open competition, which we conducted in March. According to statistics in Samara, one poster is viewed from 5000 viewers per day. In the first part of the exhibition (June-July 2017) the following authors and their works are participating:

1. Sergey Katran (Russia), "10 Angry BADs"

Sergei Katran - a famous russian artist who works in the field of science-art with various media, offered a poster on the topic "10 angry BADs." In the center of the work the viewer sees a used pellet of tablets, on each cell of which a dent is left, in which one can see a man's grimace, if desired. The landscape selected by the background indicates the "naturalness of the product", which, apparently, becomes art.


2. Yuri Albert (Russia), "Do you agree ..."

Yuri Albert views his art as a dialogue with the audience. So this time we have a job in which we find a phrase that requires an answer: "Do you agree with the assertion that art only needs to be full?" Such gesture, which presents verbal text instead of the expected picture, is certainly recognizable against the background of other similar works by this artist, but here it is still quite appropriate. We must speak on the topic, so it is necessary, why not recall the foundations of conceptual art?


3. German Vinogradov (Russia), "E.T.-aliens"

German Vinogradov: "The work is so called, because it depicts an alien, on his ears brought to Earth eggs, from which the life of aliens on Earth began. E.T. - ExtraTerrestrial - extraterrestrial. Partly inspired by the Spielberg film with the same name. In short, a joke on this topic".


4. Johanna Carlin (Sweden), "Adulthood"

Johanna Karlin: «The project ”growing up” is a continuation of the project ”Already leaning”, (showed in the earlier Street exhibition) which reflected on a global modernity in a constant transformation. It also affected subjects such as oblivion, time and dichotomies such as object and subject».


5. Ellen Skafvenstedt (Sweden), "Fruit is candy"

Ellen Skafvenstedt: «I collect trash. I walk around and pick up stuff that other people got rid off. I dumpster dive and dig up objects from the roadside. The trash is discarded material that no longer is considered appropriate in the context where it used to exist.

I am a contemporary archeologist who investigate the city. I analise everyday objects — they contain information us, humans and how we live our lives. A half eaten pear lying frozen in the snow gives gives a hint of what has happened in that exact spot. It is a sign of how people and time travel, constantly changing their surroundings.

With the rampaging of social medials like Facebook and Instagram, private is now public. People are showing their meals and diets, perfectly arranged for the picture. It is a way to prove that you have succeeded in your life, that you have the perfectly healthy lifestyle, only eating candy, provided by the nature — fruit and vegetables.

Food is a travelling material with a huge impact on our environment. But we are used to eat food we didn't produced ourselves. What is the cost of our demands for all these different groceries, gathered from all around the world? What else than a half eaten pear is rotting in the melting snow?»


6. Natasha Steinert (Russia), "Catch, fish, big and small"

Natasha Steynert: "People are involved in the process of earning money to provide for life and life, while the very mechanism of provision is impossible without the participation of a huge number of people. The foundation of the food industry is in its necessity, but it also involves many fine instruments of manipulation; man is not a beast for a long time, it is necessary to make efforts to get food, rather - food itself attracts a person, forms its dependencies and needs. All of us have been on the hook for a long time, and the worse is that this hook is our choice, we use it and we are used in it, and sooner or later it will lead to the fact that one or the other side will run out of resources. This project is an attempt to reflect the loopiness and closure of the consumption problem, the visual embodiment of the project is realized as a pattern collected from the repeating elements that also send To the idea of the problem of absorbing and being absorbed as a single closed circle".


7. Thomas C. Chung (Germany),"...It Wasn't Always So Yummy"

Thomas S. Chung: "…It Wasn't Always So Yummy", is an artwork from an ongoing series I've been creating in the last several years, knitted sculptures made of yarn and acrylic stuffing, which recall a loss and hope within their suspended present.

Continuing the theme of food as an obsession to me as a child, this particular piece reflects upon the sadness one feels when escaping from a turbulent life, doing my best to find that light within myself. Junk food was my way of coping with troubles or disturbing matters, yet at the same time it was my only form of comfort which needed no voice to soothe my pain.

Food within itself is a great divider and unifier, drawing boundaries or seeking diplomacy whenever it is needed, hiding within it a multitude of messages - it is for this reason that food will always be relevant as a contemporary still-life".


8. lexandra Ianchenko (Russia), "Lady Donut"

Alexandra Ianchenko: «Fast food instantly causes certain and often negative associations. This is both harmful food, and carcinogens, and the triumph of the consumer society, and americanization, and many other similar connotations. I kind of agree with that. But in my city - Irkutsk - where the fast food cafes appeared not so long ago and not in the same quantity as in big cities, such food carries a little other meanings. Few people go to fast food to really eat, rather it's just to sit and spend time with friends. The rhythm of life in a small town does not have to swallow a burger on the run, even coffee with itself has remained in the entertainment category of the day off. Therefore, fast food for me is not a meal or a dish, but rather a picture, a bright visual image. In the pictures of this series I depict the consumers of this food. As you know, we are what we eat. In the series, this statement was clearly expressed.


9. Yinon Avior (Israel) «You can watch - you can not touch»

Yinon Avior: "Within restaurants there is a strange interior design phenomenon: placing big aquariums at the dining area which sometimes contain the food itself (lobsters for example). The marine animals are killed according to the guests wishes in order to emphasize their freshness. This strange act inspired me to document different restaurant’s aquariums, where sometime the animal is a decorative element and sometimes it is a potential dish".


10. Edith Lajos (Germany), «Thirst for the Void»

Edit Layos: «The group of artworks entitled “Thirst fo the Void” is part of a bigger project ‘Inherence – The Lineage of Conjecture’ started in 2008 when I inherited a case of 100 years old tools. The owner of the old wooden case was a very refined Hungarian woodworker and cabinetmaker who had been exhibited even at Paris World Fair in 1889. The tools were rather unfit for modern usage but had an utterly noble history and look, so I started to use them to make a series of small compositions. Later on I became really passionate about recycling abandoned tools and objects, so I started to collect them from various sources. These pieces constitute the base of the present artwork as well.

Besides the obvious aspects and importance of recycling, I especially value the idea of continuum, the acknowledgement of eternal transformation. My compositions contribute to the infinite history of these tools and parts when together they gain a new focus and meaning. To underline the fragility of that moment I do not fix or weld these pieces together, I rather keep the possibility to dismantle them anytime. Therefore the compositions are in most of the cases based on a very subtle physical equilibrium.

The particular artwork attached here was finalized following the theme of ‘Food as a social machine’ and is entitled after the poem of Baudelaire, ‘Thirst for the Void’.

Instead of revealing the connection of the artwork with the guiding theme, I rather end with two lines from Baudelaire’s poem:

„… I've seen the world and everything that's in it, And I no longer seek in it for shelter ”.


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