Ludmila Belova’s Solo Exhibition Opens at LUDA Gallery in St. Petersburg

St. Petersburg’s LUDA gallery opens a personal exhibition project PASTORAL by Ludmila Belova. The exhibition, developed with CYLAND MediaArtLab, will be on display December 21, 2016-January 5, 2017. The report from the opening night available below.


Ludmila Belova PASTORAL
December 21, 2016—January 5, 2017
LUDA Galllery (Mokhovaya 42, St Petersburg, Russia)

Digital world is everywhere now: we are surrounded by innumerable gadgets, robots, computers. When we go on the internet, we accept existence of another virtual world, where – unlike the real one – everything is splendid. There is no time there: it can be stopped by pressing «pause» button. In that world we stay forever young, one can be easily transformed into a hero or a criminal, there is no day or night, no gravitation. Digital world is benevolent, always ready to help, show the way, find the medicine, feed, console and entertain. It is a new pastoral, counterposed to harsh reality. The main image of pastoral – sunny summer day – is transformed here into a blue light of computer screen, that allures us into the virtual reality with its original pastoral eternity.

Project «Pastoral» is a reflection on smooth merging of world of humans and world of numeric. Previous works of Liudmila Belova are engaged here in a dialog with new works. Audio-installation «Archive» plunges the viewer into a humdrum. Interactive audio-installation «Time Capsule» stores sounds of our time. Decoration of porcelain plates «Soon Will Be» tells about the history of media. In a series of photo collages «Smooth Transit» landscapes, shot in the dusk, convey transitional states of nature and invisible techno- ether. Panel «Numeric and Gadget» depicts new pastoral 3D space: the main character of the project, a Numeric Girl, walks around this world, holding in her hands a selfie stick, while her numerous copies, printed on 3D printer, dance on a digital grass to the sounds of pastoral music and twitter of electronic birds.

And over all of it reigns «The Free Wi-Fi», which is a series of interactive objects.

The exhibition “Pastoral” is a world of illusions of digital space. Along with the digital method of reproducing and producing the world, new symbolism arises. What does something that is fundamentally cerebral and invisible look like? How can the image of the digital space be shown? What cannot be seen gains visual form with the artist, thanks to expression. In the series of interactive pictures “Free Wi-Fi”, as the viewer approaches a wave lights up, symbolizing the magical means of communication, which as we know has a wave nature. In the object “Gadget and Number”, 3D models are placed in a collage on a matrix of a liquid crystal panel, living in this space. In the installation “Overture”, figures of porcelain girl shepherds printed on a 3D printer are placed on a screen, reproducing a digital meadow accompanied by the music of Jean-Baptiste Lully.

If a pastoral in the traditional understanding is a peaceful bucolic scene, lit with bright sunshine, a digital pastoral is a digital mirror which shows something that does not exist in reality, is a reflection of a reflection. Instead of sunlight illuminating idyllic landscapes, digital spaces flicker with cold lunar silver – a reflection of the light of the sun. Identical 3D shepherdesses rotate in a mirror they are reflected in, creating a likeness of a likeness. The porcelain girls admire themselves, looking into selfie gadgets, embodying the stage of the mirror in modern technology. The lunar characters of the digital world reflected in their own reflections live a parallel life, no less and no more happy and sad than their pastoral prototypes.

Olesya Turkina