Oleg Artushkov. Childhood of the Gods at the Youth Educational Centre of the State Hermitage Museum
From 27 February until 9 March at the exhibition hall of the Youth Educational Centre as part of the Class: Topical Art project, the work of one of our most promising photographic artists, Oleg Artushkov, is on display with his Childhood of the Gods.
With unvarying perfectionism the creator, a Prize Winner of the Fashion and Style in Photography award, combines the professional techniques of ‘glamour shoots’ with the traditions of classical art. The displays are distinguished by the superior quality of their printing, fine play of light and shadow, the thoughtful composition and the certainty of its proportions. Oleg Artushkov’s work studies the interactions between high classical tradition, glamour and kitsch. The result of his studies reveals the idea that the difference is only a matter of context.
The characters who feature in Oleg Artushkov’s work are charming youngsters playing, with an indistinct cloudy background; but the pleasure of the scene is deceiving. The time and place to which the porcelain figurines belong is 1930s’Germany.
Size does make a difference. The burgher statues from the totalitarian period made from porcelain were photographed close up, turning the figures into threatening, pagan gods.
Displayed on large shining panels, the deities strive to fill the entire space of the exhibition hall. When touched by viewers a blast from a Wagner symphony is accompanied with mystical fog released from the ceiling.
On 27 February, Oleg Artushkov met with students, he gave detailed answers to their questions and talked about the ideas and implementation of his Childhood of the Gods.