Official internet-portal of St. Petersburg, cultural capital of Russia
Petersburg CITY / Guide to St. Petersburg, Russia
Printed from:
Culture news, 21.07.2014 19:54

"People, be aware!"

People, be aware!

Contemporary art tends to changing senses and meanings. Sometimes it happens really fast. The metal framework of a Christmas tree built up in the corner of the Palace Square by Kristina Norman as part of the Manifesta 10 Public Program reminds of a feast which didnít happen. The process of building up a Christmas tree on the main square of Kiev has been started but has never been finished. The square turned into Maidan. And Maidan caused chaos. We hear the alert spoken in the language of art: be aware! Disturbances can be borne out of innocent entertainments.
The artwork is part of the film "Iron Gate". Its calm rhythm causes deep anxiety. The artist walks on our square as if she were delirious and imagines herself being on Maidan. Here stand the barricades, here the paintings of the Art Museum were saved from the smoke, here sit homeless people, here is the Iron Gate. An intelligent and sentimental monologue is directed to the people who already know what has happened to Ukraine - how a merry square has turned into a plug-ugly dump. Pretty terrifying.
The unfinished Christmas tree near the festive holiday is an alert, a reminder. Carnivals are not innocent. And the Palace Square is vulnerable.
Contemporary art tells us the same story which the State Hermitage keeps harping.

Mikhail Piotrovsky

News source: State Hermitage Museum

(c) 2000