Posted by on Jun 6, 2010 in Letters | No Comments

Dear friend,
after mine unpleasant experience shortly after my landing in Moscow I was in rather angry mood. I have spend most of the Friday arranging all kinds of blocking and changing passwords as well as over four our on Russian police.
That is not really something I want to write too much. More I like to tell about is how does that effect on my view and how I did try to overcome it. I am rather emotional person so you can imagine that however I tried I still had that kind of deformed lens in front of me and I can not see anything positive. This was much worse as I was very much looking forward to this trip. Now seems all changed in my mind, Russian language doesn’t sound like music anymore, in parks I do not see beautiful flowers and every where I only see possible problems. maybe I am crazy, maybe I am talking it too much, but very similar incident led more than twelve years ago to our decision to leave my country of origin.

So Saturday morning I didn’t really wanted to wake up and fulfill my plans from week ago. So I stayed in bed longer, spend long breakfast in hotel and at the end left hotel after twelve o’clock to go visit photo galleries as originally planned.
I prepared list of few photo exposition, with plan how to get there using metro. First I visited Moscow Museum of Modern Art at Petrovka street. There supposed to be two expositions. I pay entrance fee less than price of coffee in hotel and get inside. Strange what has happen, as I closed the door in deep into dark room number one of Timofei Parschikov – Suspense (Тимофей Парщиков – Саспенс)

parshikov suspenseI forgot all my troubles all my phobias or broken dreams. I was in dark room, something I really did not expect, so dark that first few minutes I can’t see my hand in front of my face. Only images displayed on monitors were to be seen. That all was underline by sounds evoking night sounds. Something we only realize that we hear it when we are alone in dark. When we somehow need to pay attention because we are afraid. To me this was as a sound of pleasant evening, being alone with all my troubles left away. I walked from image to image enjoy them and so I went through three rooms. This was excellent experience and I loved the exposition. Especially in my mind is written pair of images from night streets where woman in corner of the image is looking in camera with the fear in face while on most of the photo area back of unknown person is taking place.

Second was on the third floor and it was exposition  of Vlad Loktev, which contains mostly black and white portraits of known and less known woman. They were rather big (A1 format I guess) and some of the very interesting. If I may say there were interesting thanks to the expression of the models. Images were technically perfect and b&w tone of them very pleasing. As I was walking from room to room (not sure how many, but I guess at least seven) it all merge together to the undefined woman face without particular expression. I think in this case less would be more. There were some fantastic images, just room after room nothing new… So I returned to the first floor and enjoyed moment in dark with sounds in my brain.
One more comment, I have noticed that I was only man walking in this exposition. For over 50 minutes I met only woman. At the end, when I was leaving there was one couple. Very surprising woman looking at the woman, somehow I didn’t expect that. Maybe the reason was the name “No Make-Up”.

Same day I visited two more places, but none of them get to the quality of the first exhibition. One was purely amateurish set of images from multiple authors without common idea. Only the title image, which I saw in advert was exceptional. All the rest, if there were any good ones, disappears between the others. And the second place had to be joke so I forgot about it ;-)

Sunday I had idea to visit place called VINZAVOD, which is wine factory rebuild and used for multiple art venues. You can find there galleries, agencies, ateliers, cafes and shops. All kinds art related entities on one place. Excellent idea. I went there across whole Moscow by metro and I reach it in incredible 50 minutes from which 30 was in metro and rest walking. It was Sunday morning, well almost lunch and there were very few people. I enjoy time walking around looking into windows as doors where at the time mostly locked. Later in a day I visited fotoloft gallery where I saw very original photo exposition. What surprised me even more how excellent space this gallery has. From outside I didn’t expected at all, but being inside I was again as in another world. I left my card there and received manager’s one back. Maybe once I like to exhibit my work there.

And that was it. I try and partially succeeded to break the spell around my feelings. Looking on amount of people I met in these places I felt like they do the same. Going to cultural places, where nice intense thing are to be experience let you loose your troubles and enjoy something beautiful for a moment. Isn’t that one of the reason we have culture and art? As it seems to me after this short experience here, culture is accessible and is for everybody, not like very often in other countries were it is used as privilege for those who can effort it and they do not need it or even do not understand it. But again that is only mine humble opinion, your may vary and I love to hear about it. So write me and please feel free to ask questions, I may not explain it all as clean as I see it in my mind, I am more visual than verbal, but you know it I guess.

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