31.jpg 09.11.2018 - 08.12.2018

Arkady Nasonov Minus One

Grey light or journey with eyes closed
Travel, hypochondriac, in order to be cured of your hypochondria!
Travel, misanthrope, in order to love humanity a little!

“Letters of a Russian Traveler” by N. Karamzin

These days last year I came back from an Arctic trip. Speaking with pathos (in the original sense of the word intended by the ancient Greeks), and perhaps that is the way to make announcements about these kind of things – this journey divided my life into “before” and “after”. I cannot say that this was the first and only experience that divided my life but it definitely was one of those. And it is not even about the impressions left in the memory and in the figures but rather about the special state which I had not experienced before. Besides, I had never sailed for so long and so far from the shore. Once I sailed a yacht from the center of Germany to the north of Holland. But the voyage lasted less than three days, we moored to get some sleep, and, in addition, I was a steersman so I had responsibilities and no time to reflect... And here... A year ago, on board the icebreaker Somov, I wrote the following:  

“A monotonous horizon and grey northern fluffy light immerses me, like a person suffering from a meteoropathy, in an almost fetal state. It is similar to the same light that is called Dharmakãya in Tibetan Buddhism – the light that concentrates attention in the corridor of the afterlife world in order not to be distracted by bright temptations of illusions. The light of Luminous Emptiness. This grey light and the infinite ocean space behind the stern help me to focus and finish my script. The closer we get to the pole, the more I turn to my inner self. Like the icebreaker entering the eternal ice zone, I enter the memory zone that I have never investigated before. I died on the shore, and now my afterlife begins... We are moving towards the zero point, to absolute whiteness, purity and emptiness. Two poles. If we pretend that these are two poles of human consciousness, then for me the global Antarctica becomes a rational left hemisphere and the Russian Arctic is the irrational right one. And as I approach this pole, I begin to experience states that I have not known before... The grey haze of the sky wraps me up like a fluffy plaid blanked. I feel like an astronaut in an insulating bath. With a minimum of external stimuli, the brain produces more and more ideas.”

I could not identify this state in any way and correlate it with any past psychedelic experiences. There were comfort zones, absolute disorder, euphoria and despondency altogether. The only thing that was absent in this new state was me. All this time I was lying in my cabin, half asleep and writing down multi-episode dreams. I sent my own duplicate to attend the lunches in the main cabin or to disembark on another Arctic island, or even to draw at the desk. At collective dinners the consciousness of this duplicate could not support lively and healthy discussion of experienced polar explorers, let alone track the thread and the meaning of their conversation. I felt like a thermophilic spy in the midst of obsessive frost men. Oh! How many times have I regretted going on this trip! I regretted it every day but then obviously a fantastic sunset reflected in the northern ice, disembarkation on another island to see walruses and polar bears, double circular rainbows or northern lights got me distracted from self-pity.

One day we disembarked on Bennett Island where a memorial cross was installed in honour of Kolchak who visited the island in 1903 in search of traces of the expedition of De Toll who, in his turn, visited this place in order to discover the phantom island – Sannikov Land. We reached the island by helicopter. A strong wind was knocking down. While the spirits of De Long's expedition were hovering over my companions, the other spirits were hovering and dancing over me... The wind blew prickly snow into my jacket's hood, and suddenly I (or rather, what I sent to the island instead of myself) distinctly heard under the hood a Purcell's melody. And it was not remembering a song or humming it but hearing it! Then something distracted me. The cold and the wind... And somehow I forgot about it. It should be noted that the baroque music is associated deep in my subconscious (and not just mine – those who know, they will understand) with a feeling of cold, freezing or anesthesia. It is still a mystery how this passionate (according to European tradition) music is connected with insensitivity... The poles are closing. Icy passion…

Later, I remembered the incident on the island, and it struck me! What melody do you think I heard there? It was the Cold Song or the Aria of the Cold Genius from “King Arthur” (!!!), which was marvelously performed by the great Klaus Nomi... On the island I heard only an instrumental version without a vocal, the so-called backing track. It was me who served as a backing track at that time…

I began to analyze my state, especially the mechanism of “humming the Cold Song” on the most northern Arctic island, and tried to establish a diagnosis. The closest thing to this state happened to be the syndrome of the psychic automatism. I got rid immediately of this syndrome, called the Kandinsky-Clérambault syndrome, once I made a step from the icebreaker to the mainland. There, however, a new syndrome was waiting for me but I will tell you about it some other time...

Arkady Nasonov


15.12.2016 - 11.01.2017

Maria Arendt, Catherine Charreyre Ailleurs, nulle part

Artists not necessarily give just a comment on ongoing social and political changes or situations, how important all that may be or not. That is daily business for politicians, analysts, journalists, commentators, but these comments surround us day for day more and more make deaden our true human feelings. In away on the opposite is standing the artist being touched by what is going on in the world and reflecting it in his or her work. 
Art does not need catchy headlines, loud colors, vulgar depiction of misery to make us think, to touch us and to understand. Artistic means make us see and understand not only by our eyes, but with our hearts and souls.
This is what I was thinking when I first time got acquainted with the works of Catherine and Maria on the topic of migrants I was thinking exactly this and their work, as different these two artists are as perfectly these two group of works work together, not only in formal ways but because of their way to approach the topic of migration. 
Maria Arendt´s embroidered maps could be populated, they make the impression that something would happen now and the maps that normally would be expected to be from paper and have no personages find their counterpart in the work of Catherine Charreyre whose fabric shirts make the spectator feel the fragility of human being and especially the one who had to leave behind everything.
The whole exhibition is held in white, a color that stands for a lot and for different. It stands for innocence as it stands for immortality, respectively life and it also can stand for grief and so white is very interesting color to work on the topic the artists have chosen. 
With this exhibition we want to create a space without a point to focus, there should not be any fix-place and no direction, like the little people drawn onto glass plates. 
Gallery Iragui hosting this exhibition makes sense - I know the gallery as the one and only gallery specialized on graphic art in Russia, the for sure most international in Moscow, delicate and thoughtful, characteristics that give the artists of this exhibition the best possible environment to present their project. 

Simon Mraz

assistant to curator: Maria Pavlova

10.11.2016 - 10.12.2016

Olga Bozhko A different culture


Olga Bozhko's new project A different culture is a total installation created from a series of easel paintings, based on the mixture and interpenetration of two visual traditions – of  Central Asia and Western Europe. The unifying element here is carton door mats that will not allow to break the museum cleanliness of the gallery as a product of western democracy. Tracing the external manifestations of the labor migration process in post-Soviet countries, the artist by all means supports the popular post-colonial discourse but remains true to her own ascetical ban on direct (and thus so uninteresting) political statements. She also manages to move away from Orientalism, the main danger of politicized art practices within the framework of this rather difficult subject – and she does it expertly, literally at the last moment, being on the edge. In her works, Olga definitely shows how the carriers and actors of bright authentic visual environment have to adapt when they find themselves in a civilizationally different design spaces and objects, and what kind of chimeras are born out of these unions. The artist creates the museum works, appealing to the history of art and Russian avant-garde in her “Skullcap” and to boisterous design of metropolitan boulevards and squares in “Hydra”, and to patriotic poster surge in “Go, Russia!”, and to the Soviet visuality of landscape sculptures in “A girl with a shovel”. The video from “Cheburek forever” literally becomes the anthem of the exhibition, representing the different culture as the psychoanalytic Different dissolved in the environment, but this does not make it less frightening, which only indicates the psychological trauma of the those who are frightened. The saddest work of the exhibition is apocalyptic “Island”, a material that would look appropriate in the construction market or in the anthropological museum of the future.


download the invitation card
03.10.2016 - 14.10.2015

Nikita Alexeev Fishing and Bubbles Part I Philosophical Fishing

I spent several months in Montenegro (its national motto is “let the impossible be”), deep in the interior, squeezed between the mountains and the narrow Kotor Bay. Every day, giant cruise liners would arrive, and the tiny town of Kotor would fill up with thousands of tourists. Then these oceanic giants would sound out their deafening horns and carry the visitors off to distant realms. Kotor would be left deserted. 

I sat on the shore, gazing at the liners, at the sea, and thinking: according to the laws of probability, among the hordes arriving on The Euro Dam or The Princess of the Oceans, there were bound to be some who in terms of their intellectual abilities were on a par with Aristotle, Hegel and Wittgenstein. But I, sitting on the shore, didn't meet them, didn't get to know their thoughts; they boarded their vessels and, like the passengers of the “philosophers' ship”*, disappeared into the distance. I remained sitting on the shore. 

All I could do was try and fish out from the sea those thinkers whose illuminations I was at least to some extent familiar with. But what should you use to catch Aristotle, especially there, where they believe in the possibility of the impossible? Brick, maybe? Which bait is most likely to catch Husserl's attention? Is it not a piece of cheese?

Nikita Alexeev

06.09.2016 - 01.10.2016

Carlos Noronha Feio as you do on earth...

Galerie Iragui and narrative projects, London are pleased to announce first solo exhibition in Moscow by Carlos Noronha Feio (born 1981, Lisbon, lives and works in London). Noronha Feio has a diverse practice that includes actions, performance, video, drawing, painting, photography, rug works and multi media installation. He consumes, manipulates, juxtaposes and performs or re-sites media as research into cultural, local and global identity.

07.06.2016 - 02.07.2016

Valeria Nibiru Roundelay

Having chosen herself the name of the solar system’s mythical twelfth planet on the eve of the apocalyptic proximity to the Earth, Lera Nibiru began to create worlds at the crossroads of sleep and wake, myth and reality, ethics and politics, adults and children, large and small. Nibiru is a cosmogonic concept in the Sumerian mythology which signifies a transition point, a crossing. The borderline state, the ecstasy, the transition from the terrifying to the sublime, the art emerging from the foreboding disaster – here are the themes of installations, paintings and drawings by Lera Nibiru.

Descended (or risen) from the frightening sphere of an ancient ritual to a seemingly harmless children’s room, the roundelay retained its topos. The roundelay embraces the time in which there is neither past, nor future. One can say that the circle dance embodies a spatial representation of the archaic time with its isolation and cyclicality binding the living and the dead.

The New Year’s children’s costumes are spinning around the Christmas tree on the pages of the folded booklet. The centripetal force of the empty center attracts the empty shells of children once lived and those who are not yet born, but who will have to carry inevitably the burden of the cardboard myths. Despite the brightness of these cherries, little suns, teapots, flowers and fishes, their characters - just like Fedor Sologub’s quiet children - dance "their quiet, sad circle dance" in a still moonlight.
The roundelay of lifeless pale girls comes out of the pond in Nikolai Gogol’s “May Night, or the Drowned Maiden”; "the inanimate circle dance… of the dark creatures " wanders around in Yuri Mamleev’s texts; "the inhabitants of the last visible tier dance a peaceful transcendental roundelay” in Pavel Pepperstein’s "Mythogenic love castes" (whom Lera Nibiru names as her Zen teacher).

The circle dance of neither alive, nor dead creatures, of the spirits and hallucinations is spinning in Lera Nibiru’s watercolors. Who are they, these bunnies, bears, swans, gnomes, pioneers, astronauts and matryoshkas holding each other’s hands, paws, wings? What is their center of attraction? Astronauts float in weightlessness around a candy cane which is parodying the mysterious Monument in the "2001: a Space Odyssey". Naked pioneers are whirling around a smirking snowman with a phallic carrot-nose. Matryoshkas surrounded the mother-Matryoshka from which they all came out. Nibiru’s roundelay is a riddle in which there is no solution. One myth is superimposed on the other. Characters which used to live peacefully in children's rooms suddenly become heroes of the old and new myths. Hand in hand they lead it to the ecstatic world of chorea where Apollo Musagetes gathers his muses who dance in ‘karagods’ and ‘haragods’. The wheel of fate turns, the imaginary celestial sphere spins. Nibiru’s circle dance is a cosmogony of the childhood fears that the artist puts in a category of the sublime. Finally, Nibiru is the world-axis around which a rotation gradually turns into a spiral. It brings a circular motion of runaround to a different dimension which is the dimension of personal experience where we find ourselves face to face with what the artist visualized.

Olesya Turkina