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8 July 2016 – 10 September 2016
Admission is Free.
YARAT Contemporary Art Centre presents Traces of Time travelling exhibition with photography and video works from the permanent collection of YARAT Contemporary Art Centre.
The exhibition Traces of Time revolves around the notion of the ordinary and offers a new way of contemplating minute surroundings with local and regional contemporary artists who work in the medium of film and photography. Included works are part of the YARAT Contemporary Art Centre’s permanent collection.
The show calls for appreciating the beauty of trivialities that make up our daily surroundings that are usually overlooked and involuntarily blanked out. Sanan Aleskerov’s series Transparency of Simplicity depict these episodes that printed on Plexiglas attain semi-transparent delicacy. Olga Chernysheva's Screen series film ephemeral and familiar moments from her Russian living. The artist superimposes these videos with her poetic musings on life, association games and sociological observations. Farid Rasulov’s video Inertia films a common practice of meat-cutting for Gurban Bayram festival. However, the artist runs the footage backwards and instead of cutting the meat, the pieces become whole. The video raises questions around our perception and gives a commonplace occurrence an existential twist.
The exhibition also highlights ways of presenting the ordinary in order to highlight bigger and more acute issues. Ilkin Huseynov’s photo series Remembering the Color travel back to the artist’s hometown Ganja and capture everyday reality of the town. The harsh living conditions the artist brings to attention are hand-colored to add a spark of hope for a better future. Sitara Ibrahimova shoots ordinary scenarios in A Boy is OK, a Girl is Not to raise awareness around the problem of prenatal sex selective abortion in Azerbaijan. The artist gives voice to the women victims in an attempt to disentangle cultural traditions, gender norms and social pressures. Zamir Suleymanov’s and Emin Azizbeyli’s short film Astar follows a young man through his daily routine of chaikhanas and entertainment centers, dusty roads and derelict beaches to portrayed a sense of not belonging and an escapism that is prevalent among young generation of Azerbaijan. Similar sensation of entrapment is conveyed in Koka Ramishvili’s videos Tea, Coffee and Milk where faceless protagonists endlessly pour liquids to the tables that seem to be trapped in vicious circles. The videos act as a subversive metaphor for the reality of Post-Soviet Georgia where illusive progress seems to miss its aim. The Open Phone Booth series by Nilbar Gures capture the tragicomic living conditions at the artist’s hometown in Eastern Anatolia that lacks in infrastructure, including telephone lines. Captured in high fashion aesthetic, these photos further highlight the discrepancy of modern world and outmoded living conditions. Zamir Suleymanov’s video Determination constructs artist’s personal mythology out of fragments of daily life that tell stories of four prominent figures, who converted to Islam. The video delicately plays on perspectives, positioning the religious act of the others within the artist's own subjectivity. Nevin Aladag’s Five Stones Game depicts an ancient Central Asian game that the artist learnt from her mother when growing up in Southern Germany. The series of photographs, seemingly just documenting the game, explore the themes of tradition and memory and how cultural identity is inherited and passed on through rituals, habits and games and how these activities attain sentimental dimension when removed from the original locale.