March 7, 2013 - March 31, 2013
Inventory of a Private Library
In his series, Inventory of a Private Library, Russian artist Vadim Gushchin has arranged monoloithic piles of books from his library on a pedestal where the titles are not visible. Gushchin does not reveal to the viewer whether the books are cheap detective novels or philosophical works that changed the world. In Gushchin’s artistic space, a practice informed by Suprematism, Constructivism, and the painter Kazimir Malevich (1879-1935) in particular, such objects are transformed into sculptures. His photographs are a tribute to the book as an experienced object, an emotionally charged symbol of our collective knowledge and also a cultural treasure that we have to preserve. Gushchin’s images also reveal the fundamental duality of culture: the abstract nature of objects in it and the specificity of color.
“For me it was important to photograph the ordinary thing having removed it from the everyday reality, from the realm of its everyday existence, and to carefully scrutinize it. In this way the object grows beyond itself and transforms into the idea of the object.”
Vadim Gushchin was born in 1963 in Novosobirsk and has been a freelance artist since 1988. Since 1995, he has had numerous exhibits in galleries and museums in Russia and abroad, including the solo exhibition Wood and Bread at the 2006 Biennial of FotoFest Houston, USA. His works have been presented in conceptual group projects, among them “A la Recherche du Père” (1993, Paris), “Neue Fotografie aus Russland” (1995, tour in 5 cities of Germany), “Idea photographic after Modernism” (2002, Santa Fe, USA), Triennial of Photography in Odense, Denmark 2006, “Contemporary Russian Photography” (2012 Biennial FotoFest Houston, USA). His works are featured in several museum collections in America and Europe, the MoMA and the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Art in Moscow, and in many private collections all over the world. He lives and works in Moscow.