Alexei Gordin

28.06.2018 – at 18:00

“…through the functionality, the domestic finality of the exterior world, man is supposed to fulfill himself qua man. The truth is something else entirely. In an environment of commodities and exchange value, man is no more himself than he is exchange value and commodity.”

Jean Baudrillard. For a Critique of the Political Economy of the Sign. 1972

The place of an artist in the world of things became especially interesting when a material aspect of living got dominant in the western civilization. We all are surrounded and manipulated by things and our personality is often constructed through things we buy, have, or produce. In the society where everything is understood through exchange or use value the sacred act of creation is something more than idealistic and naive. The personality of creator has become another value. If previously artists where exchanging their skill for money then now artists are exchanging their thoughts for money. Contemporary art museums have become banks of artists` thoughts literally, creating nominal guarantee of the function of art market.

Things and thoughts. Words and money. One is smoothly flowing into another.

How an artist should identify himself in the consumerist society? Even if art becomes a weapon of truth, deconstructing the contemporary myth, it will obviously be institutionalized, evaluated and conserved as a potential of human struggle while actual struggle is never happening. Therefore, I should ask myself, do I really produce art? Or maybe I am already a product of established art market? In the end the thought is always transferred into a sellable object because everybody has needs and needs are covered by material income. The name of the gallery I decided to make this exhibition literally means “store” which is more than honesty considering that galleries are actually stores for art and artists usually openly or closely sell or dream of selling their art. The given show is a peculiar acceptance of the art market; of self identifying as a commodity evaluated through the act of creation. In the context of the exhibition the act of selling art is much more sacred then the act of creation, same as product is more sacred than human in the context of consumeristic society. Doing art, therefore means creating another value in the chain of market base relationships.

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