Victor Alimpiev is without doubt one of the most promising Russian artists of like no one else in expressing things with images and sounds that could not be expressed in any other medium. The feelings his work evokes are as intense as they are obscure. Enchantment’, ‘alienation’, ‘rapture’… these terms are both adequate and insufficient to describe the essence of Alimpiev’s work.
The sculptural character of the human figure is a recurring element in his work. He treats his actors as a painter flinging paint at the canvas. The bio-mechanic training methods that the Russian actor and theatre director Vsevolod Meyerhold developed in the first half of the twentieth century seem to be a major influence. Alimpiev orchestrates his actors, he lets them carry out rituals and lets them move collectively within theatrical settings. The result is similar in a way to Aernout Mik’s work, but Alimpiev’s camera work and image manipulation create a surreal atmosphere that brings him closer to Matthew Barney. The best way to describe Alimpiev’s modus operandi is ‘lyrical suggestivity’. He gives the impression of trusting on his intuition in his use of music and his editing of images. While documentary tendencies seem to be predominant in the contemporary visual arts, Alimpiev emphatically chooses for artificiality. Alimpiev offers a glimpse of a world that is situated somewhere above our own. For the duration of the work, we share an intense moment of extraordinary beauty. Sublime in the truest sense of the word.
Sweet Nightingale (Russia, 2005, single projection and three monitors, 6:00 min, loop)
Summer Lightnings (Russia, 2004, single projection, 3:00 min, loop)
Victor Alimpiev― Artist
Victor Alimpiev was born in Moscow in 1973. He graduated from the Art School of Memory of 1905, and the New Art Strategies at the Institute of Contemporary Art in Moscow. Today Victor Alimpiev is one of the most interesting and distinguished figures in contemporary Russian art. His works are included in the collections of such important Russian and Western museums and foundations as the National Center for Contemporary Arts, the Moscow Museum of Modern Art, Tate Modern, MuHKA, MART-Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art Rovereto, Cultural Foundation EKATERINA, Contemporary City Foundation, the Nicola Trussardi Foundation, Sandretto Re Rebaudengo Foundation. In 2005 TATE Modern acquired Victor Alimpiev’s video “Sweet Nightingale”. In 2007 Centre Pompidou included video “My Breath” in its collection.