Nikolay Oleynikov
Born in 1976 in Nizhny Novgorod (Russia).
Lives in Saint Petersburg (Russia).
Member of the group "Chto Delat".
"In a cold sweat I jumped out of my bed,
I dreamed that uprising was no longer possible...", 2016
Installation (textile, sewing, acrylic), dimensions variable
Courtesy of the artist
Artwork is carried out with the help of cooperative "Shvemy" (Anna Tersehkina, Olesya Zamojskaya)
The materials for this work are used bedsheets and towels that have preserved traces of life lived – someone's wishes, nightmares, impulses, dreams and bodily fluids. Actually, the theme of sleep has been present in Oleynikov's previous work. In 2005 he created his monumental mural "Sleeping worker", and in 2007 the graphic series "Heroes". If the first thematised the political sleep of the modern working class, then the second, which portrayed indifferent young people sunbathing on the beach, spoke to the civil passivity of the contemporary intellectual class. In his new work the artist returns to the theme of sleep and yet again interprets it politically. The hero of this work, "waking up in cold sweat", realises that his beloved "left in the sunrise", but his conscious still lives the thought that tortured him in his sleep, "insurrection is impossible". Thus the artist connects the loss of his partner to the impossibility of civil political action. In other words, to him love is rebellion, and the excitement of revolution is akin to sensual excitement. Love and political revolt are also comparable in the fact once materialised they make old life impossible and open a door into something new and uncharted and what in the moment seems to be definitely glorious.
artistic director of the project: Viktor Misiano
National Center for Contemporary Arts
Moscow Museum of Modern Art
Jewish Museum and Tolerance Center
Made on