in January we had 10
hours of sun_
30 / 03 / 2019
St. Petersburg is known for it’s appropriation of the melancholy as a brand, and, somehow, it was successfully capitalized and partially debased here. Wondering crowds of tourists are looking for the great empire echoes hidden in the palaces and festive street, roaming among the shadows of the past, encoded in the toponymical structure of the city. Provincial romantics daydream to enjoy the stylish nostalgic sadness in the shabby interiors of the former tenement houses and to kiss each other’s running noses in the cold stairwells. Young artists associate themselves with the figure of the melancholic hero and place their art and themselves in the space-time loop.
The environment of St. Petersburg exists in an astonishing mode of isolation from external processes and currents. It acts as if in a dream about her own past, in particular, sentimental provincialism. Melancholy with its nostalgia, a sense of loss and sorrow turned itself into a medium for artists. It is manifested in the concepts of work, in the choice of materials and techniques, in the plot and the composition. The social situation of young (and not only) cultural workers is also rather melancholic. Despite all the “artistry” of the environment, the successful scenarios here are extremely limited and mostly somewhat ridiculous. In a situation where art is created in the defiance with the cultural reality, the creation of some special refuges seems inevitable and necessary. While hiding in them artists build a “new”..what? Language? Friendship? Deed?
FFTN ((15), fftn, fifteen and / or |||||||||||||||) - the nowhere- place, were-space for curatorial and artistic experiments. 4.5 meters of the former Union of Artists pantry hiding in a magical triangle between Moscow railway station, children’s hospital and a concert hall. To find FFTN and to get in – all requires effort, additional interactions with the environment and / or the curators. FFTN cultivates a position of escape and open vulnerability, while, nevertheless today it’s one of the most significant contemporary art spaces in St. Petersburg. Since the end of 2016 (and actually earlier) there are exhibitions here every one to two weeks, both from St Petersburg and from other places, both emerging and established. In some cases, FFTN works as a living-in residence for those artists who need temporary shelter during their show.
“in January we had 10 hours of sun_[are-are]?” is a group show of the young artists from St. Petersburg, whose projects have already been shown in FFTN or are planned in the nearby future. Many of them are not yet known to the Moscow audience, although they are rather significant figures of the St. Petersburg art scene. The melancholic fluid karaoke will become a special event within the framework of the opening.