The New Composer's "Talking Space"
The subject of space ("cosmos" in Russian) is one of the most influential
since late 1950s. It changed psychic and cultural spheres of human life.
Since the launch of the first satellite ("sputnik" in Russian) the process
of cultural globalization start moving very fast. The sound of the first
satellite has united the earthly audiosphere. And the satellite television
created conditions for the effect of telepresence, or split psychic presence.
In our audio-visual report we would like to explore the changes in human
psychology and culture happening in connection with the development of the
space industry. Our special interest is space monuments. And to be adequate
to the subject we have to use a special form of representation. In our
audio-visual report we would like to represent a disoriented narrative on
one of the most ideologically oriented master narrative of the second half
of the 20 c. - the one of space. Concerning the subject of space and
disorientation we have to represent some sort of absence of the point of
view. There will be several sources to bring the information to the audience:
1) two talking figures - Olesya Turkina, art critic, member of the Russian
Space Federation; Viktor Mazin, art critic and psychoanalyst - visually
represent splitted presence, a dialogue, disorientation. Though the text of
the report itself is "academic" in terms of its logic, grammar, etc.
2) sound source - Valery Alakhov, a composer using in his music different
sounds form the space culture.
3) two slide projections: one is to show different images from space
culture (photos, stamps, posters, etc.), another one is to show space
monuments we analyze, three video-projectors, one to show
collage from Aelita, Protozanov's famous movie made in 1923 and dedicated
to the voyage to Mars, second for the collage made from Klushanskij movies,
who influenced Kubric, third for the collage from Soviet documentary about Space
The idea of space/cosmos is an ideological cradle of our generation. Space
narrative was one of the dominant in the film industry, it rather often was
at TV in documentaries and everyday news reels. It was important sphere
represented in stamps, postcards, posters with portraits of the
cosmonauts.Some monuments were installed in different cities.
Space praxis presupposes disorientation in territorial sense. It represents
a possibility to be outside oneself, so far as there is no point of view in
space, there is no zero point of identification. In this critical situation
as always techne becomes a part of human. This sense of orientation
appeared thanks to technological apparatus of orientation, the system of
navigation to which rely on cosmonauts. Machines say humans where there are
up, down, left, right, north, etc. In fact this situation is rather more
complicated, as soon as there is The Center of the Space Flight Control
involved in the communication for the sake of the navigation to follow the
Soviet identity (and we may presuppose the American one) was in main
respect constructed in connection with the subject of cosmos. It was part
as an official ideology, as a part of visual art, cinema, music, fiction,
etc. Why absolutely different strata of different societies could identify
themselves with, among the others, this subject?
One of the points of our generational orientation is space/cosmos so far as
"our generation" is the first one which could really think about to
overcome the earthly gravitation, about possibility to look at the planet
earth from the outside, about "complete" deterritorialization. The symbol
of the breakthrough of the territorial law became Yuri Gagrin. Gagarin one
of the most popular heroes, a pop star, or even the pop star a proper sensu
of the generation.
The analysis of the space monuments (to Gagarin, Sputnik, Tsiolkovsky) and
space exhibitions (made by Rozhdesnvensky in 1959, 1961 and by Afrika in
1995, 1999) is followed.
The idea is to reach the effect of symbolic
gravitation by surround sound (the text, a kind
of libretto specially written for it about Space mythology
which created our generation), images (video-collages
projected into 3 screens and 2 slide projectors also dedicated
to Space mythology). The presentation will represent
a kind of Space Opera, composed by Valery Alakhov,
on Olesay&Viktor's text, surrounded by Space images.
This event was produced and directed by Polina Sirosh, artist and event producer
from St Petersburg Russia and New York to continue cultural exchange between Russia and the United States.
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