'Artwork Code

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(exhibition in Moscow museum of modern art, 2021)

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The Moscow Museum of Modern Art and the School of Contemporary Art Free Workshops present Fedora Akimova’s project the Artwork Code. The exhibition is part of the MMOMA Young Art Support Program.

Fedora Akimova’s first solo exhibition brings together her recent works in different media: painting, hand embroidery and video art.

The major focus that the Artwork Code project explores is the relation between Nature and Culture, as well as the place of a human individual within these two global systems. The interrelation of these systems, their role in the personal becoming of an individual and dynamic impact on a person are problematized in a famous nature vs nurture paradigm, which implies the polemics on the correlation of natural skills and learned behavioural patterns.

Akimova’s art revolves around optical experience. It is why the artist focuses on the instruments to organize and discipline eyesight: she experiments with a mirror surface, multiplies picture frames, plays with focussing lenses. постоянная перенастройка и adjustment нашей «оптической машины». It is why the artist focuses on the instruments to organize and discipline eyesight: she experiments with a mirror surface, multiplies picture frames, plays with focussing lenses etc. It is also why the display presents photographic reproductions mechanically copying the landscape imagery, as well as pictorial landscapes by the artist herself. Thus, in a series of art objects with handmade embroidery, frames turn into a likeness of viewfinders, with natural panoramas in focus. These semi-abstract landscapes are reduced to fundamental elements of the genre: land, sky, and a skyline.

сопроводительные тексты на стенах, систему климат-контроля, ограждения, стулья для смотрителей музея и пр. It is not only nature but culture as well that Akimova seeks to deconstruct In her art. Consequently, the exhibition space includes visual attributes of traditional spaces, such as a theatre and a museum: Roman shades, a balustrade, elements of architectural decor, whereas four miniature video essays on display explore the basics of museum navigation and ergonomics: wall texts, climate control system, fences and chairs for museum attendants.

The artist focuses on the comparison of two databases — a museum as a collection of artworks and a forest as a repository of genetic information on the biodiversity of our planet. Thus, two grand-scale videos on opposite walls juxtapose a forest and a museum. What comes into light is their resemblance not only as the places of solitary experience (a retreat within the natural environment and a hermitage) but also as two different versions of archives. With all that, Akimova questions the obsession of the present-day individual with archivation, which nowadays appears to involve not only the record of the past but also the unrelenting record of the present.