Saint Petersburg
Stieglitz State Academy
of Art and Design
 

November, 23–28

Museum of Applied Arts

13–15 Solyanoy lane

Mon-Sat: 12:00 – 20:00

Sun: 12:00 – 18:00

 

Artists

 

Yves Bartlett (France), Alexey Grachev, Dmitriy Shishov, Andrew Strokov (Russia), Elena Gubanova, Ivan Govorkov (Russia), Alexandra Dementieva (Belgium–Russia), Karina Dracheva, Irina Heinz (Russia), Irina Kalapyshina (Russia), Student collaborative project, St. Petersburg Stieglitz Academy of Art and Design (Russia), Where Dogs Run Group (Russia), Tivon Rice (USA), Laura Stayton, Adam Hogan (USA), Hans Tammen (USA), Alena Tereshko, Valentina Lutsenko, Vadim Yelichev (Russia), Bettina Forget (Canada–Germany), Anna Frants (Russia–USA), Scenocosme (France)

 

Curators

 

Anna Frants (Russia-USA), Elena Gubanova (Russia), Patricia Olynyk (USA), Nina Czegledy (Canada), Jerome Nivet-Carzon (France), Lydia Griaznova (Russia)

www.ghpa.ru

 

In accordance with the current anti-Covid rules and regulations, to visit festival events you will be asked to provide a QR code which should confirm that you either had a negative PCR test (valid for 72 hours after being registered), you were vaccinated by a vaccine recognized by the Russian authorities, that you have had Covid-19 in the past 6 months (should be registered in the Russian system gosuslugi.ru).

 

Face coverings are required for all visitors, even if you are vaccinated.

Tivon Rice_Models for Environmental Literacy_2000 © Tivon Rice.jpg

Tivon Rice (USA), Models for Environmental Literacy, digital animation with A.I. generated text, 2020

 

A space station has temporarily appeared in the exhibition hall. It is a black structure divided into sections with separate exits. Each of them contains an artistic image, a fragment of the world, independent and at the same time inseparable from the others.

These sections, like portals, lead in different directions:

  • to a scale that is incommensurable with our bodies, and to signs of the presence of another person, undetectable to our ears and eyes;

  • to inhuman speeches in impossible landscapes, to new classifications arising from glitches and errors; 

  • to spaces where an act has an immediate consequence, where time can speed up and slow down, and an uttered word gains the power of action;

  • to a dimension in which time appears on film, and the beating of life holding a body “afloat” gains visible form;

  • into the future of interplanetary everyday life, into movement at cosmic speeds, into instantaneous digital proximity.

 

Free-floating objects are located next to the station, and also by the movie theater and the path leading to it. The position of these objects shows that there are also other worlds outside the ship. The objects have either emerged from the station, or are hurtling towards it. A dialogue unfolds, when unidentified objects give signals of their presence and readiness for contact.

 

The artists have presented models of different possible worlds. This is an invitation to “step outside yourself” for a while — to leave the center of attention when everything is caused by human actions and ends with them. To go beyond the limits of the conditions that are given to us — which hold us to the earth by gravity, irreversibly count down our hours and days, and divide the distances between the familiar and strange into close and far. This is a proposal to enter worlds that differ from the ones we are used to talking and thinking about. To see things taking place in the future, the present and past, the nearby and the extremely distant — things that may escape our vision, while every day we are absorbed in tasks that we believe to be meaningful. 

 

Lydia Griaznova, co-curator of exhibition project 

Yves Bartlett (France) 

Disguised as a space invader, pretending I’m one of them

sound installation, 2021

In a close future, humanity has been eaten by outer-space worms!! Disguised as one of them, I’m successfully hiding from the invaders (maybe because I'm an artist ??).

But... oh s**t! One of them is coming to talk to me!! ---> I gotta do something... Uhhh, what about improvising a little song? 

Irina Heinz (Russia) 

Celestial bodies

audiovisual installation, 2021

Engineer Alexey Grachev

Supported by CYLAND Media Art Lab

Garbage dumps seem like great works of the collective unconscious: they hypnotize and amaze us with their enormous size. But all these tons of garbage eat away at the body of the Earth like cancerous tumors. They must be eliminated. Irina Geints’ great-grandmother was a healer and cast spells to drive out illnesses and heal people’s bodies. Can a celestial body – our planet – also be healed in this way? Perhaps we simply need a spell on a cosmic scale. What if we send this disease to the center of our gallery – to the Sagittarius A black hole?

Alexey Grachev, Dmitriy Shishov, Andrew Strokov (Russia)

The Measure of Chaos

Sound installation, 2020 — work in progress

Engineers: Alexey Grachev, Dmitriy Shishov (Stieglitz  Academy); Andrew Strokov, Alexander Groznykh (Luda gallery)

Algorithms and “trainable machines” form the personal profiles of users and constantly analyze their behavior. So when two people make the same request, Google gives completely different results. Everyone swims in their own cosmos, on their own wavelength. The diligent but linear algorithm protects us from encounters with the random.

 

This installation, in which chaotic natural data are transformed into signals, is an attempt to catch and preserve in sound the invisible random element which continues to exist in free movement, bypassing trainable algorithms. The work is in two parts and displayed in two spaces.

At the exhibition at the Stieglitz Academy, the installation takes the form of an abstract canvas to which 16 electronic modules are attached. Each module is a board equipped with a Geiger counter and an analyzing circuit. As the particle passes through a gas capacitor, an impulse is generated which is then converted into a control signal. The data obtained from the module is sent as triggers to the Raspberry Pi micro-computer and transformed into MIDI commands for the Waldorf synthesizer in polyphonic mode, which produces notes through the Marshall guitar amplifier. At the same time, data from the counters is analyzed and displayed on screen. The video is a graph generated in real time showing the distribution of particles recorded by the counter, a different visual iconography and a unique generated random number.  The parameters of the sound synthesis change depending on the generated number.

At Luda gallery, data obtained from the modules from space 1 is sent under MQTT protocol as signals to a micro-computer in space 2. The microcomputer sends the control signals to a Korg MS-20 synthesizer, which generates notes and assembles them into a sound composition. The parameters of the sound synthesis also change depending on the generated number in space 1. Simultaneously, on a projector the micro-computer displays a visualization of the data obtained in the form of a particle darting around the screen.

Elena Gubanova, Ivan Govorkov (Russia)

Time Density

installation, 2021

Engineer Andrew Strokov

Supported by CYLAND Media Art Lab

Dedicated to the memory of astronomer V.S. Gubanov

In his experimental research, the outstanding Soviet astronomer Nikolai Kozyrev developed a new concept – time density, which depended on processes taking place in nature. Kozyrev tried to prove that processes with a reduction of entropy (for example, apples blooming in orchards, warmth, light and so on) weaken the time density around them, or absorb time. On the contrary, processes accompanied by an increase in entropy (withering of matter, thunder, a loud noise and so on) increase time density, and accordingly radiate time. These hypotheses have not been confirmed by the scientific community, but have many followers around the world.

In their project, Elena Gubanova and Ivan Govorkov have attempted to find a pictorial expression of Kozyrev’s experiments. This is not an imitation of research, but their artistic interpretation. A screen displaying drifting clouds is placed on a laboratory table. Next to it hangs a round Soviet-era clock connected to the screen by light sensors. The video affects the movement of the minute hand: the clouds make it slow down, and dark patches of sky make it speed up. The clouds symbolize the anti-entropic process, and the clear sky symbolizes stagnation. The installation also includes a prototype of Kozyrev’s torsion balance.

Alexandra Dementieva (Belgium–Russia)

Inland Wonderland

media installation, 2021

A journey into the cosmos, into open endless space, has always attracted scientists and dreamers. Gigantic stars, the milky way, galaxies thousands of light years away surround the earth, and we humans can be imagined as small elementary particles scurrying around on a tiny planet. But this is only one of the dimensions of the universe. There is another — a microcosm that we can observe through a powerful microscope. Tardigrades live there, mysterious animals that are incredibly resistant to extreme conditions. Alexandra Dementieva’s installation consists of three video projections of the microworld and an audio composition of sounds that create an atmosphere of immersion in the invisible. 

Karina Dracheva, Irina Kalapyshina (Russia)

Universe

media installation, 2021

Engineers Alexey Grachev, Andrew Strokov. Sound Anton Shchegolev

Supported by CYLAND Media Art Lab

The artists address the philosophical issue of the relationship between the human being and the universe. Although celestial bodies in the cosmos move at enormous speeds, human beings cannot detect these changes, as our lives are too short. There is a theory that nothing in the world takes place without consequences. Does the brief moment of a human life leave a trace in the universe? If so, what kind? Does it annoy the universe, causing chaos to the ordered structure of existence?

Collective project by students and teachers of the Stieglitz Academy (Russia)

Video dedicated to the 60th anniversary of the first human in space

video, 2021

Participants: Professor Vladimir Shistko, senior lecturer of the painting department Alexei Turchin, artist of the department of book illustration and graphic art Artur Abdulaev, students of the department of book illustration and graphic art Vera Anikeeva, Olga Zhukova, Altynai Imankhodzhaeva, Alexa Konovalova, Maria Kulagina, Alyona Repina

In this project works about the cosmos by students and teachers of the Stieglitz Academy come to life. The center of the video sequence features photos of works by Vladimir Shistko (1928-2015), who addressed the theme of the cosmos in experimental prints.

Where Dogs Run Group (Russia)

The Pause

media installation, 2013

Supported by the museum “Artkommunalka. Erofeev and Others” and ROSIZO, Moscow

In an empty white room, potatoes hang from the ceiling. The distance between the potatoes and the ceiling is not large and probably not even visible for everybody. The shadows on the ceiling help viewers to see it. The potatoes look like they are about fall to the floor or stick to the ceiling, and either scenario seems possible. In fact, there are magnets inside the potatoes keeping them in a state of levitation. But the foreign body hidden inside the vegetables accelerates the decay process. This is why the potatoes will start to rot slowly and fall, but the magnet holding them under the ceiling will still be in a state of levitation. The fallen potato is replaced by a new one.

Tivon Rice (USA)

Models for Environmental Literacy

digital animation with A.I. generated text, 2020

Supported by the Creative Industry Fund NL, Stroom Den Haag, Google Artists and Machine Intelligence, BioArt Society, and The University of Washington Center for Digital Art and Experimental Media

With his project Tivon Rice explores in a speculative manner how A.I.s could have alternative perceptions of an environment. Three distinct A.I.s were trained for the screenplay: the Scientist, the Philosopher, and the Author. The A.I.s each have their own personalities and are trained in literary work — from science fiction and eco-philosophy, to current intergovernmental reports on climate change. Rice brings them together for a series of conversations while they inhabit scenes from scanned natural environments. These virtual landscapes were captured on several field trips that Rice undertook with FIBER (Amsterdam, Netherlands) and BioArt Society (Helsinki, Finland) over the past two years. “Models for Environmental Literacy” invites the viewer to rethink the nature and application of artificial intelligence in the context of the environment.

 

Laura Stayton, Adam Hogan (USA)

Before, After (400’)

experimental film, 2020

Exploring fragility and trace through motion picture film and atmospheric electrical signals, this work is comprised of a collection of leader (the space at the beginning and end of a film reel) and damaged frames of torn perfs, splice tape marks, scratches, dust, sprocket damage, and other evidence of decay on 16mm/35mm film from recent restoration projects. Through the digital restoration process, this damage and witness of time is mostly removed to resurrect, migrate and/or preserve films and artworks, and therefore (for the most part) is unseen. 

This erasure inspired the creation of a score that directly engages the ionosphere and space by using custom VLF antennas and receivers. 

Hans Tammen (USA)

Manifolds

installation, participatory performance, 2021

“Manifolds” is a multichannel installation and audience participation performance, where visitors become a moving loudspeaker orchestra projecting sounds through their cell phones. Each channel is streamed to the audience's cell phones over the Internet. A laptop receives the main channel containing the lower frequencies, while the higher voices are solely distributed to the audience's cell phones. Visitors connect through a browser using a QR code, and by walking around in the space they become a moving loudspeaker orchestra.

 

How to interact with the installation

  1. Scan the QR code.

  2. Press connect.

  3. Crank up your phone to the max.

  4. Move your phone away from your ears, so you can hear the other phones.

  5. Walk around, you are now part of a multi-channel installation.

 

The installation works from 6 p.m. to closing time on all exhibition days.

Alena Tereshko, Valentina Lutsenko, Vadim Yelichev (Russia)

Cooing 

video, 2020

Filmed by Mikhail Pashukulsky. Composer Ilari Edelman

Supported by Name Gallery

If we try to look at ourselves with a gaze of a child, we may see ourselves anew, as if for the first time. What we see (and how we see it) will not be attached to the already composed self-image which an adult has. Practising the childishness of the astonished gaze, we may recover an interest in exploring ourselves, and then see another person as a curious multiplicity of objects, just as we are. Three phenomena — the gaze, dance, and sound — have one common quality: the genuine curiosity of children.

Bettina Forget (Canada–Germany)

Exoplanet Zoo 

installation, 2018–2020 

Supported by the Mont Mégantic Observatory and the Montreal University

To date, over 4,000 exoplanets have been discovered, and scientists are still trying to find the best way to categorize them. Bettina Forget’s project “Exoplanet Zoo”, developed during her time as artist in residence at the Mont-Mégantic Observatory in Canada, proposes to create a taxonomy of exoplanets using 3D printing technology. The artist inserted exoplanet data such as a planet’s mass and semi-major axis into the code of a 3D model of a simple sphere. The substituted numbers “glitched” the sphere, producing unexpected new shapes. The resulting menagerie of exoplanet prints suggests new ways of thinking about extrasolar environments and the possibility of life beyond Earth. 

Anna Frants (Russia–USA)

Unidentified Objects

installation, 2021

What is an unidentified object? Is it a homeless person without ID? Could it be any thing of an unusual shape? In fact, it could be anything about which we do not have enough information.

According to Marcel Duchamp, artists do not necessarily have to create a work of art: they might just choose an unidentified/unknown/found/ready-made object and put it into the context of a museum or gallery, thus turning it into an object d’art.

One character in an old Soviet film claims that he could attach “this thingy” to a readymade object, “and it’s gonna fly”, thus transforming it into an Unidentified Flying Object, which does not have to have the shape of a saucer. Anna Frants, a new-media artist, attaches electronic devices and thingies to her readymade or reclaimed objects. This probably would not make them fly, but it might make them ready to perceive the cosmos and explore chaos.

Scenocosme (France)

Metamorphy

interactive installation, 2014

Supported by French Institute (Institut Français) in St. Petersburg

“Metamorphy” is a visual and sonorous interactive artwork. Spectators are invited to touch and explore the depth of the semi-transparent veil which is a symbolic skin. The artist duo Scenocosme (Gregory Lasserre & Anais met den Ancxt) creates an ambiguity between a real physical space, a virtual space materialized by the reflection of a mirror, and a virtual space generated by the video projections of a digital device. In this sensory artwork, real reflections and virtual images get mixed up, giving the illusion of a distorted reality.

Mars: Facts and Fiction

The project is curated by independent curator Nina Czegledy (Canada) in collaboration with the Center of Contemporary Art “Łaźnia”, Gdansk, Poland

Mars, also known as the Red Planet, is named for the Roman god of war. Mars has long been an omen in the night sky and the planet remains the source of numerous facts and science fiction. Mars is the fourth planet from the Sun. It is also the home to the highest mountain in the solar system, and here the Sun appears about half the size as it does on Earth. There have been many fictional representations of the planet Mars in visual art, literature, films, theater, television and music, and only recently in performance art. In “Mars: Facts and Fiction” we present independent contemporary art projects focused on the Red Planet by two women artists: Marta Flisykowska from Poland and Minna Långström from Finland.

— Nina Czegledy, project curator

Minna Långström (Finland)

Photons of Mars

video installation, 2019

Produced by Liisa Karpo, Napafilms ltd.

“Photons of Mars” depicts facilities dedicated to interplanetary research, and the people working in these spaces; a Mars rover driver and a worker in the laboratory where the rover’s cameras are made. Filmed at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, the piece reflects on how such close connection to the Martian landscapes — over time — becomes more than the sum of data derived from photons hitting the robot’s camera sensors. The installation includes a model of the Martian rock, ”Jake Matijevic”, in a glass case. This rock was found on Mars in 2012, and is also featured in the video. One side of the rock was not photographed in detail, and these features are also rough in the model. 

Marta Flisykowska (Poland)

Who nose?

installation, 2018

How could our noses change if we lived on Mars? Transhumanist speculations.

A speculative project using 3D printing technology and the current state of knowledge in the field of cosmonautics. Based on research on the impact of climatic conditions on the shape of noses, studies in mountaineering, biomimetics, plastic surgery, as well as taking mental factors into account, the work presents original nose designs, aesthetic speculations and interpretations of  visual and formal data.

Marta Flisykowska (Poland) 

Martian Pottery

installation, 2020–2021

“In Rust We Trust” is a project that contains a set of Martian pottery 3D printed in MGS-1 material, otherwise known as Mars Global Simulant, developed at Exolith Lab at the University of Central Florida. It is the first mineralogically precise simulant of Martian regolith. The project combines issues of digital production, digital aesthetics, and innovative material experiments. In the context of ideas about the settlement and colonization of Mars, can printing the first cup made of Martian clay be a symbol of a new, interplanetary, chapter of our common human history?