Dimitri Kozyrev Paints Disrupted Landscapes To Critique The Edges Of Art And War


Dimitri Kozyrev - Painting

Dimitri Kozyrev - Painting

Dimitri Kozyrev - Painting

Dimitri Kozyrev’s paintings are captivating, to say the least. His color precision from plane to line and surface to sky balances the ephemerally abstract beautifully with a hardened environment. This compositional fracturing feels like ice cracking on the pond, disrupting the reflection or illusion of us and our structures, before we crash into a new reality.

This “crash” echoes of Constructivism or Futurism, with deep contemporary critique on not just the disruption of landscape during wartime, but maybe even more so, the distortion of self, identity, and technology in relation to art and activism as these terms relate to the avant-garde, painting, and intention in today’s milieu.

On this note, Kozyrev elaborates:

“I have titled this body of work ‘Lost Edge.’ I use the word ‘edge’ because I draw a comparison between the notion of the avant-garde in war and the art world. In the early 20th Century, the avant-garde was at the height of its importance in both realms. Now, however, I maintain that just as the concept of the military avant-garde has been “lost,” because of changes in methods of warfare, the avant-garde in the contemporary art world, has also lost its edge.

“The source material for this body of work is images of ruins of the once mighty fortifications of the Mannerhiem Line, built to protect Finland from the advances of the Soviet military avant-garde. Finland’s attempt was valiant and not in vain; this war and the lives that were lost in 1939 are largely forgotten. The fortification lie in ruins, and nature is slowly reclaiming them. Similarly, the ‘cutting edge’ of the contemporary art world seems to have become blunted. Viewers of the avant-garde work of many visionary artists of the early 20th Century were shocked, challenged and inspired by The Malevich’s ‘Black Square’ and ‘Fountain’ of Marcel Duchamp. Because of changes in society, like changes in warfare, it has become difficult for today’s contemporary artist to generate the same level of response without resorting to vulgarity.”

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Hot Rotor Magazine

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Here are some scans from the short lived Hot Rotor Magazine, which as far as I can tell was a promotional item issued by the turbine/rocket engine company Turbonique. The images, helpfully scanned by Jason Torchinsky, convey a playful sense of futurist optimism which was all too common in 1960s America, yet we can still clearly see that Turbonique’s vision of the future is very much steeped in 1960s industrial design and culture.

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Richard Galpin

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British artist Richard Galpin has developed a very specific method which he uses to create all of his work, going all the way back to 2001. He shoots photographs in cities and then takes a scalpel to them, stripping away pieces of the image until a new kind of image of urban space – a very futuristic urban space – emerges. So while he is imagining the future, we can still see the vestiges of the past.

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