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Asel Kadyrkhanova Machine_18-11.jpg

Installation, mixed media

Image: The work exhibited at Focus Kazakhstan: Postnomadic Mind, Wapping Project, London, UK


              The work commemorates millions of nameless victims of the Great Purge in the USSR in the 1930-s. It features an old typewriter and a thousand of arrest warrants with erased data. The red thread in this work is used to visualize and materialize the traces of the event in space of memory by becoming a line that connects an act and its consequence, the perpetrator and a victim.

The arrest warrants are digital copies copied from real documents; the surnames of arrestees have been erased but those of perpetrators left intact. In this way, each warrant becomes an index referring to the real person who signed it, thus posing questions of individual participation in collective violence and showing how an ordinary bureaucratic act can become an act of violence in a totalitarian society.

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Asel Kadyrkhanova machine fragment1.jpg
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Machine, Kasteev Museum of Fine Art, Almaty, Kazakhstan, 2013

kadyrkhanova machine_18 installation art
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