Taus makhacheva  tightrope 2015

Taus Makhacheva


Video, 73 min.
Materials: 4K video, colour, sound

Collection: Collection M HKA, Antwerp.

A tightrope walker crosses the abyss of a canyon in the highlands of Cauca­sians mountains using artworks of various Dagestani artists on instead of a balancing pole. The walker, Rasul Abakarov, descendant of a famous tight­rope dynasty in 5th generation, brings paintings and works on paper span­ning through the whole 20th century from one side of the mountain to the other into a structure that evokes a museum storage. By staging this risky operation, Makhacheva creates a vision of subjective institutional history of art in 61 objects, questioning the mechanisms of functioning of history of art under the threat of depths of amnesia. The way how artworks are moved above the void evokes the fragile balance of post-soviet subjectivity rein­venting itself and looking for an equilibrium between the traditional past and the national, local and contemporary culture. Ultimately the precarious balance of the tightrope embodies the existential experience of an artist always balancing on the verge of appreciation and oblivion. (Silvia Franceschini)

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