Vladimir Potapov did not want to part with painting for a long time, but he had to choose - Cezanne spoke about the truth in painting, and today the truth is that it is not in the picture, and you have to deal with this picturesque paradox of a liar.
Potapov is looking for an answer as if he does not know it. He brought the picture out of the captivity of traditional technique, showed painting as the incompleteness of the medium. With this understanding, reality turns into an imperfect illusion, into a bad lie. Volodya gathered young painters and found out why painting is dead, but they are not yet. I shot a series of videos with knowledge involved, interrogated them about painting as a problem, no one objected. The justification of practices, even dubious ones like art, relies on agreement on the essentials. No one in contemporary art argues with the main thing.
In previous projects, Potapov collected illusory space in a synthetic perception, linking the boundaries of painting with the experience of the body. The viewer correlated his movement with the image, tried on the body of the Cyclops, found the eye, exhumed the remains of the picture - the illusion of space. The illusion returned not as a curse of mimesis, but as a construct of the meeting. The truth of painting was revealed in the experience of trying on someone else's body - the body of a one-eyed artist. Reminiscent of the Parisian photographic salons of the mid-19th century or the death of Kashchei, enclosed in a duck, etc. Orthodoxy is also reminiscent of politics - today the pictorial illusion does not need to be exposed, no one believes in it anyway. They do not believe, but they are baptized. What remains is the mythology of the production of art, the conjuncture of tradition, canvas, paints - all this romantic hallucinosis, on which the art market hooks not so much its cynical buyers of fantasies as the rest of the audience crowded around the arena. The public is a madhouse, and as long as the illusion is bought, deconstruction, like haloperidol, will not be superfluous.
I am examining contrasting images, fragments of Vladimir Potapov's free-flowing project Manifestation. Rigid monochromatic spots without halftones, the picture is reduced to a monochrome spot, nothing superfluous.
These are works in which only dry colorful pigment remains from painting. His non-contact painting excludes the artist's body, subtracts needlework from painting. He sees the similarity of his method of dry painting with the development of photography - you will not see until you sprinkle the pigment. The pigment points to the gap between the bearer of the image and the imaginary signifier, reporting on an extralinguistic understanding of the image and a new ontology of the illusory world.
Instead of a pigment, there could be earth, dust, anything - understanding this circumstance turns the pigment into that red clay, which in the language of the Pentateuch simultaneously means matter, language, man in general. The only nuance is that his video is not about sculpture, but about painting.
An artist, even if he works with painting, is not an artist because he can draw, but because he works with an image as with something initially invisible. From the ruptures of painting, when its medial basis is exposed, reality shines through, the true fetish of art. Reality for art as for a person sex is more a reason for talking than the subject itself.
This is the place where the hidden becomes visible. Pure potentiality, capable of turning into anything, like an undeveloped photograph or like Volodya Potapov's surface prepared for seeding with pigment. This is the most speculative thing in art. From there come nightmares and daytime beauties. Masturbating to her is an honor. Malevich's manifesto for the exhibition 0.10 was called "From Cubism to Suprematism. New pictorial realism. His "Red Square" is subtitled "Picturesque Realism of a Peasant Woman in 2 Dimensions". But in reality, beauties come at night, and nightmares during the day, as in Volgograd.
Potapov made a project about reality. In this project, the painting medium speaks for himself. The technique that he documents in his videos is connected with painting only by pigment and base. Turning to pigment is a revision of the foundations of painting, its techniques and rules. The pigment reveals the visual sign as an unconscious reality. But what is reality?
Volodya says - birds, they die, I'm interested in their death, it's more than a deadly microbe, it's a metaphor for the renewal of art and politics, and so on. After that, we are almost ready to perceive pestilence as the work of an artist. That is, art today is trying to overcome its medium, the image itself does not mean anything. Painting does not have to be virtuoso, but it must make the imagination watch itself. It must return to us the presence in reality, and if this is the reality of a hallucination, then we must be present in it, and not it in us.