Damir Muratov

Moscow, 13.12.2018—7.02.2019

exhibition is over

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Curator Anna Zaitseva
Curator Anna Zaitseva


For mass-media


Curator: Anna Zaitseva
With the support of 11.12 Gallery

The Multimedia Art Museum Moscow presents an exhibition by one of the most striking contemporary artists, Damir Muratov, author of the renowned ‘Che Burasha’ and ‘Mickey Mao’, and the creator of ‘United States of Siberia’ and ‘Bednotown’ in Omsk.

Damir Muratov admits that the conception for the exhibition Forever, which brings together works created in 2017, was hard to formulate, lacking a ‘piece of the puzzle’. Everything fell into place following a trip to Istanbul and a reading of Orhan Pamuk’s book ‘Istanbul: Memories and the City’, which is steeped in sorrow at the loss of the Ottoman Empire’s former might.

This ‘lucid sorrow’ became the missing emotional and conceptual center of the project, making the identification of the feelings of a generation of people born in the Soviet era possible. This is a collection of barely discernible symbols and codes. When it is seen by the generation of ‘Soviet children’, that generation will recognize its own kind and experience nostalgic feelings.

Damir Muratov is one of the wittiest of contemporary artists. The ‘Soviet’ theme that he introduces in his art is not ideologically tinged. It revolves around the elements of the ‘landscape’ that surrounded him in his childhood which he contemplates, rather than critically assessing. This is a certain given in which a part of his life took place.

Damir Muratov’s project is a reflection on time as a transient substance that he translates through an appeal to Soviet images, selecting ephemeral objects — labels, wrappers and consumer goods — as reference points for his works.

Damir Muratov assimilates the essence of that period, transferring it to modernity, adapting its intricately formulated sensation in such a way that it can be experienced by a generation that missed the Soviet Union.

‘My focus isn’t actually on values. Values are the same everywhere: family, children, like with all people, as Letov sang. It’s more about the elusiveness of the moment — it’s not melancholy, it’s not grief, it’s specifically a "lucid sorrow".’ (Damir Muratov)

The artist doesn’t paint in order to find justification or answers, he simply narrates, shares his emotions, makes his ‘post-Soviet romantic’ mindset evident, comparing it with the European form of Buddhism.

‘I’d like to tell my story through pictures. I lived together with the country. Without pathos’, recounts Damir Muratov.

The Museum sincerely thanks Rena Zeinalova, Valentin Kurilenko, Andrey Malakhov, Viktoria Fydorova and Yevgeny Khanin for providing works for the exhibition.

Damir Muratov was born in 1967 in Tobolsk. He graduated from the arts and graphics faculty of the Omsk Gorky State Pedagogical University (1998). Muratov’s personal exhibitions include: ‘Everything will be covered in the needles of our cedar pines’ (White Cube Gallery, Omsk; Krasnoyarsk Culture-History Museum Complex, 2011–2012); ‘How I spent the summer’ (Boli Sher Gallery, Omsk, 2012), ‘The end of color’ (Gallery X — Max, Ufa, 2012), ‘From Siberia with Love’ (11.12 GALLERY, Moscow, 2013), ‘White soldiers’ (Erarta Museum of Modern Art, St. Petersburg, 2013), ‘Random skier’ (Dukley Art Center, Kotor, Montenegro, 2015), ‘The art of ghosts’ (11.12 GALLERY, Moscow, 2017) and others.

Participant in group exhibitions: United States of Siberia (Tobacco Factory Building, Perm; Siberian Center of Modern Art, Novosibirsk; Cultural Alliance Gallery, Moscow; Loft Project Etazhi, St. Petersburg, 2012–2013), the 7th Alanika International Symposium of Modern Art (Vladikavkaz, 2013), Ural-Transcendental (ARTPLAY Designer Center, Moscow, 2015), Bazov-Fest. New Ural Mythologies (Ural Branch of the State Modern Art Center, Yekaterinburg, 2016), Russian Modern Art Triennial (Garage Museum of Modern Art, 2017), Art Riot Post-Soviet Actionism / (Saatchi Gallery, London, 2018), the First International Modern Art Biennial (Bucharest, 2018).

Has participated in the design of productions for the Tovstonogov Bolshoi Drama Theater, the North Kazakhstan Oblast Puppet Theater and the Moscow Governorship Theater.

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