Tanya Akhmetgalieva

08.12.2015 – 31.01.2015

Central Exhibition Hall “Manege”, Moscow


Elena Yushina

Many sides of the artist’s personal worldview have been embodied in the Fragile Island project. At the same time, the project touches on the social and cultural aspects of modern life.


In the building of Saint Petersburg State University —– the prototype of the System — we find ourselves in a panopticon of knowledge, on an island with lonely palm trees grown in the hothouse conditions of the systemic institution. In the external world, beyond the walls of the mathematical-mechanical institute, we encounter indifferent individuals. One gets the feeling they are huddling up to each other. A mechanical audio recording created especially for the exhibition by the philosopher and psychoanalyst Viktor Mazin immerses us in the boundless spaces of memory and the search for the authentic…


"Life in plastic, it’s fantastic!" sang the pop group Aqua. However, a purely physical perception of this "life in plastic" is impossible. Our natural desire to be implicated witnted by the saturated acidic colors of the objects. Immersed in the "Heavenly Lake" with the plastic “petroleum food”, each spectator finds his or her own little island where he/she seeks refuge from the boiling waters. Among the "Polar Coordinates" — hot and cold, crowds and emptiness, sunset and dawn, life and death — an unearthly radiance shines down on us. In the playhouse on the seashore we meet young Tanya again and again with images from her childhood, we once again return to the island in our memories. The external world, with all its coarseness and cruelty, once again emphasizes and accentuates the fragility of our inner world. The boundaries of all concepts are eroded and the waves erase the outlines of our internal integrity. It is only after we have protected our own tiny island within ourselves that we continue to fantasize about the bliss in the palaces of the One State.


All the works displayed at the exhibition are linked by glittering colors, images and words, which spill over and overflow, similar to holographic paper. In each work there is a conflict between what is plastic and what is alive, the real and the imaginary. This is a project about the eternal search for happiness, about harmony and disturbance, about memory and forgetfulness, about hope and loss, about the "we" in each of us.


Elena Yushina