Albert Soldatov

29.05.2014 – 15.06.2014

Central Exhibition Hall “Manege”, Moscow

Part of the Great Expectations project.


The juddering of the reels of film in the projector helped auteurs film in Bazin's interpretation to recognize itself as being aesthetic: a unique spatial-temporal sculpture constructed in unified, prolonged planes, their lengths not defined by the requirements of editing, but by the very impact of flowing time, as marked out by the barely discernible breathing of the pulsing shot. The perceptive model as developed by the cinematographer is inherited by analogue video with its essentially mechanical means of recording and reproduction. What's more, the films and performances of the first video artists, filmed in extremely prolonged shots and often with static cameras effectively abolished the boundaries of length continually being expanded by cinematography, though they ran up against the capacities of the viewers' attention in "the black cube".


Digital video has created a different visual situation in principle. It has discovered the fundamental immobility of the moving image in which the totality of the flow, not leaving any gaps between the frames, forces time out into the very fabric of the image. In this coition of frame and inter-frame space the picture is condensed and compacted, it solidifies, gaining mass and a certain monumentality, while the drawn-out passages on the contrary, become empty, vacuous, engendering a desire to switch to another YouTube channel.


It is this situation that Albert Soldatov makes visible in his works. Actualizing the immobility of the digital video image, he fills the lifeless computer interiors, deprived of depth, with frozen models of objects of domestic comfort. Our gaze, slipping over their surface, loses focus and, wearied by the unbearably static nature of the space, it falls into the ironic trap of the television screen, which is transmitting amateur footage of Bayan players giving lively performances of the soundtracks of well-known blockbusters — a singular effect of the notorious silicon valley as applied to a cozy little everyday world. Saturating the room's space, this idiotic spectacle serves as bait, it is a trap — it immobilizes and fetters those caught in it. The external is compressed, reduced to the scale of the room. The levers of control are concealed, the threads are severed. The total stasis.


Dmitry Venkov

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