Collection of essays about artistic statements in Belarusian contemporary art

Marina Naprushkina:
cycle “Office for
Anti-Propaganda”,
since 2007

ZBOR #28

Archive of the political propaganda, transformed into a political platform

Includes total installations, actions, video, literary and journalistic editions

Marina Naprushkina:cycle “Office forAnti-Propaganda”,since 2007

Fragment of the installation “Office for Anti-Propaganda», 2010

 

The Office for Anti-Propaganda of Marina Naprushkina is an on-going and growing project of knowledge, initiatives and artefacts which question political and social consensus. Naprushkina reveals the hidden influence and interference of politics and economics in the social processes. The artist presents a project at different venues most often as a total installation, such as the exhibition Opening the Door? Belarus Art Today in Vilnius in 2010 and Warsaw in 2011. In this work the artist uses the visual products of Belarusian official ideology. In an exhibition space this propagandist symbols and narratives bring discredit on themselves. The concept of simulatio as of a strong element of irony goes back to ancient rhetorics. Back then it was used by a weak opponent to win time and space to strike back. In her video work Belarus Today (2008) or Wealth for All (2009) Naprushkina emphasized the emptiness of political statements which are totally detached from the lives of ordinary citizens.

For certain specific projects Naprushkina interacts with local initiatives, strengthening the collective voice of counter-propaganda. Belarus activists put the newspapers made by the artist, Convincing Victory: Two Stories of the Real History and Belarusian Self-Government, 2011-2012 in mailboxes across Belarus. Colouring book My Dad Is a Policeman. What Does He Do at Work? (2011)  was made during the campaign against gender violence, and it was also spread through non-artistic channels. Park for the Community in Lublin (2013, as a part of the Union Festival of Art in Public Space) the artist created together with the artist Pavel Althamer, Selchanka Women’s Association of the Belarusian village Zalesie, assistants and enthusiasts from Ukraine, Warsaw and Berlin.

Creating works that are built on a particular context and address a specific socio-political problem is one of the areas of Naprushkina’s activities. Even more important task Naprushkina sees in the formation of stable, sustainable initiatives that are able to act autonomously and on a long-term basis. Her Institute of Future in Minsk is an educational platform at the crossroads of politics, art and feminism. In Berlin she organized and managed an initiative among her neighbours to support refugees – New Neighbourhood // Moabit (neuenachbarschaft.wordpress.com). Refugees that arrive in Germany and prepare for the courts can find Marina’s Refugees’ Library very useful. It is an archive of cases considered by the Berlin courts (refugeeslibrary.wordpress.com).

Disgraceful People, as they were referred to by Foucault, those “who could be noticed only if they interfere with the authorities” are the main characters and partners of Naprushkina’s work. She helps to make their voices heard articulated.

 

Marina Naprushkina (born 1981, Minsk, Belarus) – artist, activist. Founder of the “Office for Anti-Propaganda” political platform. Initiated projects Belarus//The Institute of the Future, Neue Nachbarschaft //Moabit.

Lives and works in Berlin, Germany.

 

Text: KALEKTAR ©

 

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