Art Delivers People
2 November – 5 December 2010
1 November 2010
Yakov Kazhdan (b. 1973) is a graduate of the Institute of Contemporary Art, a member of the group “Leto,” a performance artist, director, video and installation artist.
In his new project Art Delivers People at the GMG Gallery, the artist continues his exploration of the phenomenon of global cultural industry, linking it to the new corporate colonialism.
The layout of the exhibition resembles the interior architecture of a non-existent company. The project opens with a video parody of Richard Serra’s famous work Television Delivers People. After the “prologue” in the gallery entrance, the viewer finds himself into the white cube – “creative living room” of the company with the appropriate attributes. “The conference table” (the “creative” object)—writes the artist—is an example of creative design that is uncomfortable to use; the top of the table is also a percentage diagram of the exhibition’s budget.” Already at the entrance to this space the viewer will be invited to a training for management. This is an artist’s work too, and drawings on the walls around are, of course, a little more than just decoration.
Second floor. To have accepted the invitation.
The marble plaques and the accompanying documentation of historical graffiti recall both gravestones and estranged monuments of vandalism. Revealing the codes of the reversed connection to art, the artist is interested in the fate of marble surfaces in the modern public space, showing an interesting historical-sociological chain: an author (speaking out on some surface)—an object of visual culture (the surface itself)—the viewer reading these statements (who in turn can easily become an author).
Next to the marble plaques is the work “24 Minutes Across from the MID (Ministry of Foreign Affairs)”: a series of morning photographs, barely distinguishable from one another, taken across the Garden Ring from the MID building. The manifold “landscape,” taken 60 times from practically the same standpoint, does not allow the viewer to contemplate a single image. Thus the repetitive, serial image, which has spread throughout visual culture, allows the author to escape liability to the audience for the product.
The culmination of the project is the video “Focus Groups.” This form of research is used in marketing and politics. It was developed by a student of Freud, Ernest Dichter, who studied group psychotherapy. This initiative, which originated as a medical study, becomes an instrument in the formation of the mass communications market. The artist renders visible the invisible mechanisms of biopolitical repression.