Over the past year and a half, in my daily routine around the house and in programmed walks, intriguing patterns began to emerge. While in years of work as a fashion and portrait photographer my eye has worked to enhance a particular sheen, with “Regime” I’ve allowed myself to enter into a passive solemnity where only the sun is spotlight, and the accumulative patch-ups, degradations and “improvements” of the urban environment in Moscow quietly expose themselves to me.
A plodding and subtle rip in the wallpaper in my apartment waits for its daily moment in the noontime light; a taped-up shattered windshield on a totaled Hyundai plays with the rusted-out window covers nearby; the lustrous toe of a Malchish Kibalchish statue—tenderly rubbed by generations of children—puts the silent shadows of the Pioneer’s Palace Park in heady relief. Artifacts of the Soviet era intermingle with now also abandoned technical advancements of the 90s, and there is the sense that anything “new” or temporary will someday certainly begin to fray and show its age, too. Nothing is permanent—but somehow everything is.
The language is certainly personal but my subjects, if we can call them that, betray a certain universality—at least for Muscovites. Harnessing the daylight at certain moments to show the static nature of change, I feel that my work is, in a sense, archaeology in reverse—flattening time to the point where the banal details of a shared history become simultaneous. The result is not completely unsentimental, but nor is it nostalgic—it is simply, and beautifully, the present.