M HKA, Antwerp
20 January 2018 - 29 April 2018
image: © M HKA, Collection M HKA
The Ukrainian artist Nikita Kadan started on an artistic conquest from his hometown Kiev to bring into view the turbulent and especially violent history of his people, his country, and by extension the whole former Soviet Union. Kadan draws, paints and makes installations – often in collaboration with architects, human rights activists and sociologists – and always with an eye on the dark side of the past. The artist wants to show how the horror of the past is still visible and noticeable in present-day life. Kadan not only shows his own struggles with culture, heritage and patriotism, but especially how the harmful effects of their abuse still affect daily life.
In 2015, the M HKA acquired Nikita Kadan's installation The Possessed Can Witness in the Court, a construction of archive shelving with works of the artist and personal objects. Later, two additional works were purchased: The Chronicle, a series of drawings by victims of torture, pogroms, the massacres in Volhynia and prisoners during the Nazi regime, and The Spectators, a portrait series of 'public enemies' from the former Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic in the 1930s. This ensemble will now be shown together for the first time.
> Nikita Kadan, The Possessed Can Witness in the Court, 2015. Installation, metal construction with various objects like lightbox, photograph, plants, coal, a take away leaflet etc., 220 x 150 x 70 cm.
> Nikita Kadan, The Spectators, 2016. Drawing, charcoal on paper, 5 x (75 x 55 cm).
> Nikita Kadan, The Chronicle, 2016. Drawing, ink on paper, 18 x (15 x 20 cm)/(20 x 15 cm) .