Six large-scale canvases. Reliefs: laconic almost monochrome, but hence – clear expressiveness of the space. Collage. Natalia Sitnikova’s new solo exhibition in “Agency. Art Ru” is called “Letters without a Theme”. There are in the title itself those ideas of contrast with an element of absurdity, which the artist is developing, combining timeless themes with the realities of today. Why write letters if they do not have a theme? To whom are they addressed? And, really, can a letter be so huge? “Our present world is so full of information, flows of information. A letter, on the one hand, is also part of this flow. But, on the other, the lack of theme contrasts with today, when virtually everything carries information”, the author explains her idea. Looking yet deeper, the viewer reaches the fundamental association: the six letters refer to the six days of The Creation.
Reliefs, which make up the second meaning layer of the exposition, refer us to history, not mythological, but Art history. Their voluminous texture is filled with recognisable sculptural quotations: the cross, the circle, the six-pointed star – signs firmly woven into the cultural code of humanity and not requiring further explanation. By the way, Sitnikova’s paintings, done in mixed media, are not flat: their white canvas, at times just waiting for the artist’s touch, is covered with convex layers, and the complex landscape, emerging as a result, illustrates the passage of time. Another element of the exposition in the exhibition hall of “Agency. Art Ru” – is collage that includes a number of small graphic works, as a tribute to this compiled, synthesised, but exceedingly relevant genre.
In “Letters without a Theme” the idea of the absence of a theme, of reticence, contained in the concept of the exhibition along with minimalist colour, inevitably infers obeisance to the Eastern artistic tradition. Paying tribute to one of the greatest arts – calligraphy, Natalia Sitnikova creates her own version of hieroglyphics. As a result, the hieroglyphs of the artist’s personal alphabet form a message – deeply personal, but addressed to a wide range of unnamed recipients.