Past exhibition

Vadim Fiškin / Yerbossyn Meldibekov: The Relationship of Coinciding

Aspan Gallery is pleased to present Vadim Fiškin | Yerbossyn Meldibekov: Relationship of Coinciding.

Aspan Gallery continues its series of exhibitions-dialogues of Central Asian and international non-Western contemporary artists. The new show Relationship of Coinciding features works by Kazakhstani Yerbossyn Meldibekov and Russian-born Slovenian artist Vadim Fiškin, who will be exhibited in Central Asia for the first time.

Vadim Fiškinwill present his famous installation miss Christmas (2012) among other projects. In this work we see a bucket with black paint and its shadow, yet there is a disconnect – there is a ghostly palm tree growing out of the bucket's shadow, but no such palm appears in reality. The object and its shadow do not correspond. On closer inspection we begin to notice that the shadow is a projection of a video with a gently swaying palm tree. This tricketry makes us reflect on the nature of art. Fiškin takes the basic elements of visual arts – light, shadow and colour and completely rethinks their relationship to one another, placing a contradiction at the core of the work.

While Fiškin's works demonstrate the artist's interest in new technologies, Meldibekov investigates the disconnect in the history of Central Asia. For example, his installation the Seasons in the Hindu Kush (2008-2010), consisting of colourful metal cookware, tells a story of changes of political systems in Afghanistan in the past 60 years. Various political regimes – monarchy, Daoud's republic, the Communist military dictatorship, the Mujahedeen, the Taliban and the Amercian military authorities – Meldibekov compares to the changing seasons in the mountains of Hindu Kush. In his other projects Transformer (2013) and Pedestal (2016-2017) the artist expolores the history of public statues in Central Asia, which were changed with each ideology change. Meldibekov presents the story of monuments that replaced each other on one square in Tashkent in a form of a modular construction toy, which can be configured into the real monuments that existed in the past. This way, by playing at the Transformer the viewer is able to experience as something personal a century’s worth of the history of an enormous region of Central Asia.

Despite obvious differences in their geographies and artistic strategies both artists in the exhibition share a programmatic interest in scientific research, whether relating to natural phenomena or historical facts. The artists use various forms to present their findings – performance, video, installation, but the result is always humorous and poetic at the same time. The element of surprise in the works by Fiškin and Meldibekov makes their work similar to a children’s game or a magical transformation.

Aspan Gallery has published an exhibition catalogue with an essay by Istanbul-based art-critic and curator Ali Akay.

The exhibition Relationship of Coinciding will take place at the EXPO Villa, Villa Boutiques & Restaurants (140A Al-Farabi, Almaty) 24 April – 3 June.