In Lada Nakonechna's work, exhibition space is a certain context of scenes and positions of things, a space of everyday life in which the actions unfold—but automatically, in 'background mode', the acceptable operation of which does not require deliberate human actions. At the same time, the artist is interested in the relationship within this 'background mode' between the established and existing and the possibility of the real transformation of everyday life.
In the exhibition space, the protagonist is the motif of the traditional picturesque genre painting—the rural landscape. The idyllic, commonplace theme of the landscape lies on the surface, but it is an 'accomplice in the crime': the realistic surface of the image is intended to be a representation of reality, while the intermediary elements remain hidden in the background. The use of the landscape from artist Mykola Burachek's Road to a Collective Farm, 1937 is a clear reference to the history of the former socialist country; in particular, to the history of industrialisation, the collectivisation of agriculture and the cultural revolution, which ended with the centralisation of the cultural management system, which to this day works by established requirements.
By analogy with the representation of the landscape motif as a transparent semantic space that does not allow for self-reflection, the exhibition space includes fragments of theatrical, ceremonial public rituals—practices that produce and stage reality and which are called upon to cultivate a certain kind of sensuality, or more precisely, insensitivity to what disciplinary types of power are behind these rituals.
By literally multiplying and manipulating the image and peering into its structures, Nakonechna is wading through its surface. Conversely, she puts people in a variety of roles—from the passive spectator to one driven by directives and one seized by the guiding foreshortenings. These manipulations evoke the automatic programming of the 'background mode' of everyday life; at the same time, they release the unforeseen possibility of action in an already established, daily life.
Press release courtesy Galerie EIGEN + ART. Text: Kateryna Badianova. Translation: Nelson Navarro