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Artist Oleg Kulik wants us to go back to being beats | 05.01


Artist Oleg Kulik wants us to go back to being beats

This artist dreams big. New paradise is what he wants to see back, and his ongoing exhibition in Kyiv is meant to show just how he wants to achieve it.

Artist Oleg Kulik wants us to go back to being beats

Born in Ukraine, Oleg Kulik is now one of Russia's most famous modern artists. His art performances are provocative and poignant. The current exhibition of photo collages printed on glass, are centered around unspoilt views of lakes, forests and savannah, complete with wild beats and... reflections of humans.

Kulik himself and several of his female models are but traces of human beings reflected in the glass. Sometimes taking provocative sexual positions, they are meant to remind the viewers of the beasts inside us, of the fact that our libidos come from Mother Nature.

These philosophical reflections put together in a series of art works called “Windows” and “New Paradise,” are on display in the Mironova Gallery on 6 Olhinska Street in Kyiv until Jan. 25.

Kulik, who was born in 1961 in Kyiv, currently lives in Moscow and is a rare guest in his historic motherland.

Animals and wildness are a recurring theme in his art. He won international acclaim as an artist after a series of his performances called “art animal”, in which he assumed the role of a dog (and later of a fish and a bull). Stark naked, he was taken around on a leash, behaving just like a dog.

As a precursor of that art performance, in the early 1990s, he had founded a party of animals in Russia, and traveled around the country campaigning on its behalf while wearing shiny steel horns.

Compared to his wild dog past, his current works look meditative, almost pastoral – if that description is at all applicable to the works of art that are designed to steer one's emotions.

Nevertheless, his works have made it to parts of permanent modern art exhibits in the world's most famous galleries, including the Guggenheim museum in New York and Tate Modern in London. He frequently participates in the Venice Biennale, the Istanbul Biennale, São Paulo Art Biennale and exhibitions in Paris, Vienna, Barcelona, Kioto, New York and Cologne.

His works are a part of personal collections of famous collectors such as Francois Pinault and Viktor Pinchuk. The latter had invited Kulik to show some of his works in Pinchuk Art Centre as a part of larger exhibitions.

But the exhibition in Mironova gallery is the first personal one in his native city. The works on display are estimated at 7,000 to 70,000 euro.

Kulik personally made sure that the light and setting for his works are perfect in the gallery, and achieve the desired effect. “Kulik came before the start of his exhibition and told us how to fix the lights and what the position of works should have been,” said Marina Gladyrevska, administrator of Mironova gallery.

As a result, both the models inside the shots, and the visitors whose image is reflected in glass, become a part of the wild landscape on the background. The visitors, with their movement, make the images interactive – and that's the effect Kulik sought.

“The fundamental problem of the modern world is the conflict between the modern culture and nature. The human being has conquered nature which now only remains as trophies in zoological museums. Such are the consequences of the modern civilization. I refuse to get to know the nature only through exhibits at zoological museums. I see my task in this project as to reveal the animalistic origins in every human being,” said Kulik.

Mironova gellery

6 Olginska


Free entry

The exhibition runs through Jan. 25

Read more: http://www.kyivpost.com/news/guide/guidenews/detail/121019/#ixzz1kIRfD1cA


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