Grove
part of the group show Futurologia / Russian Utopias at Garage Center for Contemporary Culture, Moscow, Russia
5 March – 23 May 2010

From an iconological point of view, Korina’s Grove goes back to the pagan idea of the Garden of Earthly Delights, which was repeatedly criticized by the followers of the New Testament. In a sense, communist holidays, which the Soviet regime celebrated with parades and flamboyant civic decorations, were also pagan events. As distinct from, say, Catholic holidays, during which the streets are also richly decorated, communism had no churches of its own where fundamental principles were intoned. Its liturgy was celebrated in the streets, parks and squares, where such simple decorations as multicolored electric bulbs were far from sufficient. This is why paintings, sculptures, and installations were needed to give a detailed and effective interpretation of the event. All this agitprop art was made from cheap materials, for immediate use, and afterward discarded or, more exactly, allowed to rot in some storehouse.

Korina’s installation involves more shadows of the faded, almost transparent remnants of these festive decorations. The artist depicts them left lying in some desolate park, while new vegetation burgeons along the alleys and former flowerbeds, quickly adapting to and merging with the strange white “wedding” attire, giving the abandoned bride a new lease on life and great expectations.

This new growth defragments temporary losses and binds together disjointed scraps of meaning. The original sense is lost, however. But who is to say that the new meanings are less valuable than old ones? At least, in their very proliferation, they are less authoritarian.

Connection, interrelation, coherence and dependence are the main counterpoints in Korina’s work. The catalysts here are cobwebs, honeycombs, crutches, suspenders, and slings — a rhizome, the seedbed of a new epoch, the inexorable growth of which will bring thousands of new holidays with thousands of new brides. Just you wait and see.

Eugenia Kikodze

Group show Scales of Desire
Plato Ostrava, Moravska Ostrava, Czech Republic
2014