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Expedition in Polymer-forming Landscape

Made by Kawarga in cooperation with Eco Museum (Muravlenko City)
for 7th Krasnoyarsk Biennial 2007

"Sketch of Siberia" was announced as the theme of the VII Krasnoyarsk Museum Biennale and I set off to the tundra to collect data for my sketch. I travelled by train for two and a half days, then on deer and dog teams through the endlessly-monotonous landscape. The place of my art-landing became the minute oil town with the strange name Muravlenko.

What yielded to being collected, I collected – air, five litres of oil, stones, fragmented stories, wandering through the marshes, the looks of people, the hoof of a deer, a long narrative by the sinewy Tartar-drill operator about oil wells and their clogs of black paraffin, a photograph of a real Khant and some other things… Having analysed all the data which had been collected in the expedition, I realised that two trends, both contradictory and mutually nourishing one another were clearly being traced – the vertical and the horizontal.

The "Horizontal" is a picture 85x360cm.
The heavens or distorted faces of onlookers are reflected in glossy surfaces from different angles. In such cases the viewer finds himself "captured within" these lakes – as if the oilmen, drowning in the bogs.

The "Vertical" sculpture 50x50x180cm is a section of the earth, into which I had pumped that very oil. The oil in the reservoir of the sculpture fluctuates and lives its own life because it is subject to the effect of the most powerful audio-murmur – very low sound frequencies in combination with mysteriously-womblike sounds and premonitions.

On the whole, the trip made a strange impression on my consciousness – a lasting sensation of dreams. Probably because I had travelled to a very remote world, and also with this absurd task – the making of some sketch with the cooperation of the local museum.

In the museum there were stuffed birds and animals amongst numerous documents, confirming the existence in reality of the little town itself. Then I believed in everything that was going on, but now strange thoughts come to me…

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