Sofya Gavrilova, Alexey Korsi

gavrilovakorsiSofya Gavrilova was born in 1987. She holds a Ph.D. in geography. In 2012 she graduated from the Rodchenko Moscow School of Photography and Multimedia. Winner of the Silver Camera competition (2011). Longlisted for the Kandinsky Prize 2012 in the Young Artist —Project of the Year category. Alexey Korsi was born in 1986 in Moscow and graduated from the Moscow Architecture Institute. In 2010 he enrolled in the Rodchenko Moscow School of Photography and Multimedia. Alexey Korsi was a co-curator and Sofya Gavrilova a participant in a special project, “Barbarians,” at the 3rd Moscow Biennale for Young Art (2012), nominated for the Innovation state art prize in the New Generation category.

The artists explore the relationships between objects and the space in which they exist, and pass through various levels of interpretation in their investigation. The idea for the project came from something that happened to Sofya Gavrilova — a chance dialogue about whether the shadow of a beach umbrella belongs to the umbrella itself. “I once had a very interesting experience at the beach. In the morning I sat under a big wooden umbrella and went for a swim. When I returned an hour later I saw two men resting in the shadow of my umbrella. Disappointed that I had been deprived of my hard-won shade, I asked them to leave ‘my shade.’ At this was pointed out to me (very justifiably, I might add) ‘the shade cast by the umbrella doesn’t belong to it.’ It wasn’t the time or place for philosophical discussions, but this question ‘does the shadow of the umbrella belong to the umbrella’ got stuck in my head.”
These words prompted the concept that grounds the project: Do objects have their own personal space, and how can we define its borders? Anybody has a right to invade not only the shadow cast by an umbrella but also the space between the umbrella and its shadow. This is an ephemeral zone that belongs to the object and its shadow and is also a part of space, and it is difficult to define its boundaries. Incidentally, for the source of the light that gives birth to shadow, this space is unattainable — it is a blind spot inaccessible to the observer’s gaze or contact or the all-pervading light.