Vladimir Anzelm and Alexander SigutinPartner:
Gastarbeiters of Spirit
“Gastarbaiters of Spirit” is a joint project by Vladimir Anzelm and Alexander Sigutin. “Gastarbeiter” in German means “foreign worker”. So, the title of the project reflects the idea of a spiritual feat of an artist, and questions the actual place of artistic action in the contemporary culture’s system of values.
Vladimir Anzelm (Germany) and Alexander Sigutin (Russia), on the one hand, have a common interest to the theme of religion, and, on the other – they share similar approach to the work with cultural symbols. In his coal sculptures Vladimir Anzelm reconstructs the objects of the material world which are often described in scriptural texts – a cup, a forbidden fruit, a spear, a skull, etc. These black massive objects remind us of petrified artifacts from ancient cultures, disappeared long time ago, and extracted by some unknown archaeologist from the bowels of the Earth.
By contrast with the black coal sculptures, white canvases by Alexander Sigutin reproduce the motives of the famous orthodox icons – from “Trinity” to “Assumption,” but in such way, as if they are drawn with ease, in almost abstractionist way, with one touch of a hand. Sigutin’s paintings after old orthodox icons as well as Anzelm’s sculptures after scriptural texts attract spectaculars’ attention to the important problem of religious identity revival in Russia, and of a search for a new way to translate cultural values by means of contemporary art.