The zines of the international project “Art Platform for the promotion of Ural Contemporary Art” were presented in Yekaterinburg»

presentation of the project

Elena Shamratova
Elena Shamratova

The Yeltsin Center presented the results of the international project “Art Platform for the Promotion of Ural Contemporary Art”, which the Sinara Charitable Foundation has been conducting for more than a year with the support of the Presidential Grants Fund. The presentation was attended by experts, artists, young art critics and fans of contemporary art. Natalia Levitskaya, President of the Sinara Charitable Foundation, and Zhenya Chaika, curator of the Art Platform, spoke about the stages of the project, while participants and tutors from France, Switzerland, the Netherlands and Sweden shared their impressions of the creative process. The organizers provided for the possibility of online connection of experts and artists who could not attend the meeting.
– The Art Platform project is certainly unique, because it allowed us to implement a completely new approach to creating a community environment, and it seems to me that the idea that was originally laid was very productively implemented. We managed to implement digital tools that globally expanded the opportunities for promotion and will allow the project to exist in the future. Today, the Art Platform has a website that has the potential for development – “said Natalia Levitskaya, President of the Sinara Charitable Foundation.
Zhenya Chaika presented to the guests of the presentation creative art brochures-zines dedicated to the work of four Ural artists-Fedor Telkov, Asi Marakulina, PLAR and ZONK projects. The curator of the project stressed that it turned out to be a kind of “packed knowledge” about them. Each zine consists of a visual part illustrating the work of the artists, and a text created by one of the tutors of the project – Jonathan Habib Enqvist (Sweden), Nadine Reinert (Switzerland), Willem Jan Renders (the Netherlands) and Charles Carcopino (France). The zine contains the text in three languages: Russian, English, and the author’s native language. Art brochures will be sent to libraries and cultural institutions in Russia and Europe.
“Initially, when the project was conceived, we decided that we would publish texts about artists who do not have any monographic publications about themselves,” said Natalia Levitskaya. – This principle is very important for us, because artists should receive a critical understanding of their work. This is also extremely relevant for those who write about art.”
Each set of art-brochure supplemented creative investments, symbolizing the work of the heroes of publications: Zin ASI Marakulina is accompanied by a set of five temporary tattoo perevodom reminding the reader about the project “Hugs” in the text about Fedor Telcove invested individual Fenichka-a tab in the text PLAR are postcards with examples of interventions in the urban environment, and Zin Zonk’accompanies a…a clown nose, calling to put it on and talk to someone while making unexpected moves.
– Nadine Reinert wrote the text about my work in her native German. The woven bookmarks embedded in the zin are an important contribution to locality, we look at them and know what they are about. Baubles were woven by two masters-Tatiana Zharkova and Lyubov Smirnykh. In total, it was necessary to wind 250 pieces. Baubles turned out not to look like each other, because they are woven in different ways. They can be used as bookmarks, belts or bracelets – as you like. It is interesting that Tatiana Zharkova is a Marian by nationality: She comes from Bolshaya Tavra, a place where we often visited while working on a project about the Ural Mari people, and her husband comes from an Old Believer background, which became the subject of my project “The Right of Faith”. In both cultures, there are traditional woven belts that are so different from each other, ” said photographer Fyodor Telkov.
Participation in the “Art Platform” was a unique experience not only for the critics, but also for the tutors of the project. “Digital mode was even more productive for our process, because it gave everyone the opportunity to work and open up in their own rhythm. Another thing that sets this project apart from the international context for me is that I was invited to write in my native Swedish. Now, thinking about this whole adventure, I can say that the swing between distance and intimacy is what got me involved the most, ” said Jonathan Habib Enqvist.
Nadine Reinert, a curator from Switzerland, admitted that thanks to her participation in the Art Platform, she was lucky enough to meet interesting artists from the Urals. “For my text, I chose a photo of Fyodor Telkov. I looked at his website, and I was very impressed with his work. I wanted to write a rather intimate and personal text about him,” said Nadine Reinert.
The French curator of the performing arts, Charles Carcopino, prepared the text in the format of an interview. He dedicated his publication to the work of the choreographic duo ZONK. “For several weeks, in the morning, I sent the guys a question about the specifics of their work. ZONK dancers have different choreographic styles, and it was very interesting to meet them, ” said Charles Carcopino.
– We are delighted with the result! Wow! Participation in the “Art Platform” was an amazing event for us, because we are a dance project, and we were close to visual artists. This helped us to look at our work in a different way. It seems that the dance can not be taken and packed in a daddy, and thanks to the “Art Platform” we were able to do this. We also had a very interesting format of communication with Charles – a kind of conversation at breakfast. Charles sent us questions, and we told him the answers. It was an interesting experience, – the dancers shared their opinion.
Willem Jan Renders from the Netherlands dedicated his text to the PLAR project. The foreign expert of contemporary art admitted that the “Art Platform” has become a meeting place for people who work with both words and images. “The idea of the Art Platform is very original. In the future, it would be great to change the order of things: usually the artist first created something, and the critic wrote about it. I think it would be interesting to do the opposite: the critic writes the text, and the artist reacts to what is written with his work, ” Willem Jan shared the idea.
25 texts about the Ural art were prepared by critics of the project – you can read them on the website of the “Art Platform”. Critical essays are devoted to the work of Vladimir Seleznev, the art association of GUI, Alexander Bazhenov, Ekaterina Duelshchikova, Sergey Laushkin and other artists. Vladimir Seleznev, who was present at the presentation, spoke positively about the text of the critic Dmitry Belkin. According to the artist, the author perfectly coped with his task. “Each participant of the project chose an artist whose work he liked. Dmitry decided to write about me. The text turned out to be quite personal – it’s very good,” admitted Mr Seleznev.
Alexey Glazyrin, co-founder of the first professional jazz club in Yekaterinburg, EverJazz, read all the critical publications of the participants and called the “Art Platform” a breakthrough in writing texts about contemporary art.
– In this project, we managed to create statements about artists living near us, which are aimed not only at a professional audience, but also at those who want to understand art. This is the real art criticism. No matter how great a poet Pushkin was, or how great a writer Gogol was, their significance for Russian literature and culture would not have been fully revealed without Belinsky’s critic. In this case, I can note the birth of modern Belinskys, who can open and create a single cultural space, which we all dream of, – said Alexey Glazyrin.

Alisa Prudnikova, Head of Strategic Projects at the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts, highly appreciated the project of the Sinara Charitable Foundation. – “Art-Platform” promotes the cultivation and development of the Ural art community. We have created a communication platform for the exchange of experience among critics, artists and international experts. This is important and valuable! – Alice Prudnikova commented.