Part of Textologies group show of Translit journal.
The Quarter artist space, St. Petersburg
The Krasnoyarsk Museum Centre, Krasnoyarsk
Ilya Orlov’s project Moulds focuses on package, scraps, traces of a product lost in the void of consupmtion. An object is gone, what is left is a by-product, or rather a by-object, an anti-object. The word mould has plenty of definitions, including shape, form, matrix, to create, to sculpt, to influence, and also blight, soil, decay – a tricky and yet productive case for a supposed poetic translation. These modest objects, moulds and packages belong to the most ordinary everyday life. They are not used for themselves, neither are they sold or bought for themselves without the things they contain. They are doomed to exist as rubbish. The artist extracts them from this infinite circle of merchandise and utility, discovering their semiotic (or anti-semiotic) nature. It is not always possible to even name these objects, or the name turns out to be so featureless that hardly means anything; but a small shift of the viewing system makes us see them as some kind of pictograms, hieroglyphs, a secret code. Still, beyond the “double entity” of sign there is nothing. This encyclopaedia of written language turns out to be empty – since there is yet no convention in culture about the meaning of this or that plastic or cardboard arabesque. The field of art is exactly where this non-referentiality can play its part, and the dadaist or zen-like framing of emptiness supports this game and for some time deprives objects of their memories of lost functionality.
Text: Anastasia Karkacheva, curator