Shikhlinskaya's "Illusions" on display in Baku

12 December 2014 17:59 (UTC+04:00)

By Nigar Orujova

The Baku Museum of Modern Art hosted the opening ceremony of the personal exhibition of Sabina Shikhlinskaya, Azerbaijan’s honored artist, on December 11.

The exhibition called "Illusions" is consisting of light and video installations.

Aida Mahmudova, Director of the Baku Museum of Modern Art, Founder and Head of YARAT Contemporary Art Space addressed the ceremony speaking about the works of Sabina Shikhlinskaya.

She noted that Shikhlinskaya is one of the most talented artists of Azerbaijan, who worked for years in the field of contemporary conceptual art and multimedia.

The director stressed that the works of Shikhlinskaya are exhibited and stored in private and museum collections around the world.

Sabina Shikhlinskaya expressed gratitude to Mahmudova, the museum staff and everyone who helped in organizing the exhibition. The artist expressed confidence in the success of the project.

The exhibition consists of seven light and video installations ("Power", "Glory", "Freedom", "Choice", "Happiness", "Horizons", "Nature"), which allegorically reflect images of the most common desires and aspirations of the majority of the representatives of the modern society.

The concept of the exhibition covers the artist's reflections on the famous philosophical dilemma "To Have or to Be?" exploring spiritual sphere issues and various aspects of relationship between man and society.

A work named Illusion by psychoanalyst and philosopher Erich Fromm explains that human hope for boundless happiness and freedom, material abundance and dominance over nature raised when the industrial era started. It was assumed that unlimited production will lead to unlimited consumption. However, all this only led to materialization of the modern society in which people prefer to "have" rather than to "be".

Neon was chosen by the artist as a material widely used in modern advertising industry and attract consumers. So, the project "Illusion" sets the task of critical and partly ironic perspective of the attractiveness and popularity in modern society of materialistic aspirations. Here neon is used in accordance with the visual and semantic "illusory" of the compositions presented.

The exhibition will last until January 2, 2015.

Sabina Shikhlinskaya is an established artist working in a range of medium - from land art to textiles, painting and video. She was educated at both the State University of Arts and Culture in Azerbaijan and the V.Mukhina Institute of Arts in St. Petersburg, Russia.

In 2006 she received the title of Honored Artist. Her works were represented at the 30th Council of Europe Exhibition, German Historical Museum, Berlin (2012), Documenta 13, Pavilion of Critical Art Ensemble, Kassel (2012), Centre of Contemporary Art, Baku (2011), Proun Gallery, Paris (2011), State Museum of Modern Art of the Russian Academy of Arts, Moscow (2011), The National Art, Culture and Museum Complex, Kiev (2011), 52nd Venice Biennale for the official Pavilion of Azerbaijan (2007).