Rustamova translates issues like displacement, language and identity into installations and videos, in which she combines audio and photography.
About the artist
For her first solo exhibition in the Netherlands, Meggy Rustamova (1985) presents videowork and a new installation in which she combines photography and audio. Rustamova was born in Georgia but moved to Belgium via the Netherlands with her mother at the age of eight. While never referring explicitly to her origins, themes such as language, identity and displacement are central to her work. She approaches these subjects sometimes through performances, and at others using photos, sound installations or video. For her videos, Rustamova often starts collecting pictures that she transfers to film and where she builds a story upon. Her videos play down in the twilight of fiction and reality, personal and collective memory. At De Brakke Grond she presents two works: Light Deportation and l'Invitation au Voyage.
Light Deportations (2017)
For De Brakke Grond Rustamova developed the installation Light Deportations (2017), a poetical reflection of the impossibility to fully represent reality. With her brand new installation the artist takes a new step in her explorations of the relationship between static and moving images. This work is a total installation consisting of seventeen photographic prints of a tree, printed on canvas along both sides. The starting point for this photo was the artist’s attempts to photograph a tree in Hiroshima. The photographs not only provide the subject, but also the backdrop. This is particularly evident in one of the three accompanying audio fragments, in which the artist talks about her deportation as a refugee through the woods. Or has she adopted this story from someone else?
L’invitation au Voyage (2014)
One of Rustamova’s other pieces, L’invitation au Voyage (2014), is comparable with Light Deportations because she films the stationary images in the same way. The video L’invitation au Voyage consists of a succession of black-and-white archive photos accompanied by commentary from the artist. As the camera slowly roams over the photos, zooming in on details, she spins a story around the individual images, weaving them together. Reality and fiction, memory and the blurring of the mind, history at micro and macro levels, are brought seamlessly together. Yellow, erased Post-it notes stuck to some of the photos act as a trigger, stimulating the viewer’s imagination to further fill in the gaps in the narrative.
About Meggy Rustamova
Meggy Rustamova lives and works in Ghent. As a child, she migrated from Georgia with her Assyrian mother, finally settling in Belgium after moving around the Netherlands. After studying theatre at the Herman Teirlinck Institute, she obtained Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in visual art from the Royal Academy of Fine Arts (KASK), and spent some time at the Universität der Künste in Berlin and the Higher Institute for Fine Arts (HISK) in Ghent.
In recent years, her oeuvre has become increasingly international. She has exhibited at International Film Festival Rotterdam (2016 and 2017), in S.M.A.K. in Ghent (2016), Beursschouwburg Brussels (2016), Tallinn Art Hall (2016), Bureau des Réalités, Brussels (2015), Kunsthalle Wien (2015) and the Bonnefantenmuseum, Maastricht (2014).
|Images||Light deportations © Meggy Rustamova 2017|
|L’invitation au Voyage © Meggy Rustamova 2014|
|Observations © Meggy Rustamova 2015, installation view Beursschouwburg Brussels|
|curated by||Wytske Visser|