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Review: 'Devoid Forms' by Anna Mladentseva

Daniil Antropov and Konstantin Grebnev's works are, what one might call, double helix manifestations of modern human activity and perception. It is a twisting structure warping out of control with an overload of post-industrial information that desperately seeks face and form. This crisis unravels in Moscow's Museum of Modern Art (MMOMA), spitting out its dregs on display for the show 'Devoid Forms'.

Daniil Antropov communicates this with an unusual attitude to form in ceramics, blurring the boundaries between micro and macro structures. As such, the heavy piles of free flowing matter could both be microscopic renderings of cells performing meiosis and a towering landfill. Antropov's exhibits seem utterly excessive despite being no larger than an average vase or a desktop computer. To throw the viewer even more off guard, the metal mesh additions make the works seem like construction sites. The photographs are grandiose in their angles, amplifying the form in coordination with data overflow. Ceramic forms get repetitively stacked over and over in the world's post-historic database, where the past gets constantly overwritten and instead turned into the present², present³...

Konstantin Grebnev chose to communicate this excess through a space that one may even call 'anti-material' or 'de-material', that assumes no breeding ground for excess –– the cyberspace, or the virtual. Grebnev works mainly with video art and experiments with photo manipulation software. The contemporary obsession over digital footprints and cycles of creating and archiving posts manifests in forms similar to those of Antropov under the cracked glaze of the computer's liquid crystal display, which Grebnev extracts and presents.

'Devoid Forms' poses as an opportunity to reflect upon the effects that data and information can have on our visual and material culture. Fragments of our post-industrial environment can be both monstrous and compact, much like the effect that human activity can have on the face of the earth, or even on the faces of their own.


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