Yuriy Solomko | Montenegro

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Since 1991, with the coming of «times of change», I have used maps in my works. I form my artistic statement about geopolitics, history and personality in the world with them. I am interested in 2 positions, namely 1.The whole world (The World) and 2. Ukraine on the world map.

This new project «Montenegro» is special as it is the first time that I am doing such a project about one country. It is like pictures of a traveler who arrived in the country for the first time.

It resulted in 7 works. Every work is based on the landscape of the country, represented with the help of maps or pictorial images of the topography of the country. Next, I have taken the symbols which I can convey the peculiarity of the country with.

So, it is a Country, where people live in a stone. Such metaphor of the object is «Globus Montenegro» (the stone covered with names of settlements).

These stone mountains make life difficult, but protect and save the ethnos. This is proven in history. That is why I have used a construction helmet in another object, «Montenegrin helmet». Construction is also one of the characteristic symbols of Montenegro, but already a modern one.  The model of a hand folded as a blessing right hand is situated on the helmet. The hand of John the Baptist is situated in Montenegro. This is impressive and creates a mental field.

The next object is represented with 3 pictures: the Sky, the Earth and Water. Christian symbols of Grapes, Lamb and Fish correspond to them. And an amphora on the sea bottom is an archaeological artefact, speaking about the historical past. Expositionally, the paintings are exhibited horizontally, but meaningfully it is a vertical. And if we consider «frame-by-frame playback», we can notice that the earth changes its position vertically. Apparently vertical relations exist and dominate in society.

At the last two drawings on the map of Montenegro, by the time of their creation, I have painted Marina Abramovich and the image, created in her performance in «Balkan Erotic Epic». Marina Abramovich displayed the pre-Christian world of the Balkans in the modern world in her works.

So I created the foundation for further understanding of contemporary Montenegro. These are landscape, Christianity and folk epic.