Article Number: 1442
English, 28 Pages, 2005, Jan van Eyck Academie
Alevtina Kaknidze

The Drawings

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'If you really want it: don’t buy it, turn it into lines'. That must have been one of the motives for Fine Art researcher Alevtina Kakhidze (Ukraine, 1973) to make several black and white drawings of luxury commodities and their prices, as Norman Bryson clearly points out in his essay I don’t need it/I want it.

One of the activities to prepare the societies of the former Eastern block for their engagement in Western social and cultural systems, he states, is shopping. This Western consumerist culture is exactly what Alevtina Kakhidze critically researched in her exhibition at the Glaspaleis in Heerlen (summer 2005) and now in her series of cards, The drawings. 'If advertising is the dominant visual language of commerce, Kakhidze’s drawings involve the subtle undermining of that language, a playful emptying out of its lines of force.' Kakhidze’s criticism not only takes place on the level of the drawing, but also by approaching the shop as a gallery, as a venue that carefully exhibits its precious goods. It is 'a ‘minor’ resistance, perhaps, that Alevtina Kakhidze’s drawings turn against the process of becoming a normal, that is to say, normalized, Western consumer'.