Alexey Kallima

KallimaAlexey Kallima was born in 1969 inGrozny, Chechnya.
He attended Krasnodar College of Fine Arts (a painting course) from 1984-88.
Since 2001 he’s curated the France Gallery.
Kallima lives and works in Moscow.

Chechen Women’s Team Of Parachute Jumping

In large, almost monumental canvases the artist depicts training sessions of the top parachute jumping team of the Chechen-IngushAutonomousSovietSocialistRepublic, which no longer exists. Creating a photographic effect of authenticity, his images embody a Chechnya which we perhaps can only see today in documentary photographs. It’s Chechnya without the 12-year war. It’s the Chechnya he saw with his own eyes in pre-war Grozny.
Now Alexey Kallima, having referred back to images in his memory in which technology, the body and dreams are combined with the raptures of flight, is finding the source of pictorial delight in the past delight of the observer. He is offering his version of what was important and valuable in socialism — the spatial, sensory, corporeal settings of life in the 1980s, exceedingly far from the dream, but which today calls forth nostalgic memories of a peaceful and stable life, particularly in the Caucasus.
The obvious allusions to Deineka, who also loved heavenly spaces populated by the new man who’d mastered technology, indicate interest in the socialist past.
But this comparison is far from perfect. Here, the slightly frightening though progressive technological nature of Deineka’s graphics. This comparison allows one to also notice that Kallima’s paintings are free of another frightening side of the art of Socialist Realism: its link with imperial ideology. In the complex development of history and ideas, contemporary art is acquiring more and more tangible regional connotations.

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