Elena Slobtseva
Video art, installation, graphics
1981, Perm, Russia
The art history of "Russian Povera" has been reflected and later on developed by another Perm artist Elena Slobtseva. Her career in contemporary art started from ARTpolitics school, another brainchild of Perm "cultural revolution". The school provided her with the understanding that she could work with an object, performance, video, allowed to part with provincial stereotypes that excluded actual art and bring contemporary practices into the frame.
Following the concept and logic of «Russian Povera», the first and so far the main project of the Perm Museum of Contemporary Art (PERMM), Elena Slobtseva works primarily with garbage and waste. Key actors of many Elena's objects, graphic and video works are ordinary office metal staples, furniture and construction staples of various sizes. They take different roles expressing the ideas of birth, growth, aging and death; they embody live and dead objects, ideas of individual and collective. Sometimes they represent conflicts, in other works are metaphors of biological ties, historical "seams" and «spiritual bonds» (named so in the speech by Vladimir Putin a few years ago).

Body themes are important for Slobtseva's art. Her «Breastfeeding» (2012), a provocative and feminist-oriented work, was partially a performance, partially an object shown in the Perm Museum of Contemporary Art and offered the audience the opportunity to confront paradoxical games of meaning and linguistic traps. Deserts shaped as jelly breasts were served at the exhibition opening and public was supposed to consume them. The author describes it as an erotic female theme: «I always want to touch objects and jelly is one of those strange substances that one can possibly feel».
«Unnecessary Form» (2015) is another jelly-based project by Elena Slobtseva that appeals to a number of mental layers. The colour of jelly sculptures, that actually could be tasted at the show, implies the story about oil because «here in Russia we live by oil and are fed by oil». The environmental and ecological connotation is most visible here focusing the attention of a viewer on the abundance of wasted objects.

«Household Glamour» is an open permanent project that Elena Slobtseva started in 2013. It visualizes unlimited and dubious moments of a woman's life story with its immersion into everyday existence and living it through. On the one hand, a woman obeys a man and accepts her life while on the other hand discovers sometimes hedonistic or masochistic pleasures.

Unlike her previous politically driven works, «Heart» (2017) is a kinetic object free of any political connotation. It was commissioned by CCA «Garage» for the first Triennial of Russian contemporary art and shows the creation of life in an urban and technical space. Stacks and piles of staples beat simultaneously with the heartbeat demonstrating a break up with the former perception of a human body as biomorphic.
Selected works
animation and video
art objects

Matches / 2018
Art object
Lipstick (Vaccination) / 2017
Art object
Heart / 2017
Kinetic objec
Surgery / 2015
Art object
Maps / 2014
Interactive object
Breastfeeding / 2012
The Сity (Gorodki) / 2017
Exhibitions and publications
  • Perm State University, English Literature
  • Bowling Green State University, English Literature
  • School of contemporary art "Artpolitika", Perm
  • School of engaged art "Chto delat?" Saint Petersburg
Solo exhibitions
  • "Vaccination", Perm art fair, Perm, Russia
  • Billboards", Green Art Gallery, Perm, Russia
Group exhibitions
  • "Imya Rek", PERMM Museum of Contemporary Art, Perm, Russia
  • "Insects", joint project with Elana Neil, Pop-Up gallery, Brighton, UK
  • VDNH, Marina Gisich Gallery, Saint Petersburg, Russia
  • "Perm 3: Anthology of Contemporary Art 1970-s - 2010-s", PERMM Museum of Contemporary Art, Perm, Russia
  • "Mechanisms of emergence", Lyuda gallery, Saint Petersburg, Russia

  • "It's time for me to decay and you to blossom 2", Kunst House, Tartu, Estonia
  • "It's time for me to decay and you to blossom 1", Voronja Gallery, Estonia
  • "Fractals and structure", Cultproject Gallery, Moscow, Russia
  • The 1st Garage Triennial of Russian Contemporary Art, Museum Garage, Moscow, Russia

  • "Geopoetics", PERMM Museum of Contemporary Art, Perm, Russia
  • "My universities", PERMM Museum of Contemporary Art, Perm, Russia
  • "Shape of the unseen", Winzavod, Moscow
  • "Live emptiness", PERMM Museum of Contemporary Art, Perm, Russia

  • "The promise of landscape", PERMM Museum of Contemporary Art, Perm, Russia
  • "Shape of the unseen", PERMM Museum of Contemporary Art, Perm, Russia

  • "Everybody's a bit worried", special project of the Moscow international biennale for young art, Nagornaya gallery, Moscow, Russia

  • "Anthropology", Perm Central Exhibition Hall, Perm, Russia
    Foundation artists
    © 2018 «Malyshchuk foundation»
    + 7 903 079 77 77
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