Places / Russia

Pasha 183 – Postmortem Personal Show

Moscow Museum of Modern Art is showing one of the best exhibitions seen in Moscow in recent times.

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Photo: Moscow Museum of Modern Art

It can be called a personal personal exhibition about one of Russia´s most interesting artists, Pasha 183, who unfortunately passed away in 2013 at the age of 29. The exhibition is curated by lina Borisova and Kirill Lebedev (Kto). Kirill Kto (he himself being one of the leading street artists in Russia) was a close friend of Pasha 183 and has created a consistent, refined exhibition to represent the work of a great artistic talent. Avoiding cooperations with classic institutions such as museums, he decided to overcome this approach in order to make the work of Pasha 183 accessible to a wider public. As a regular exhibition visitor I am very thankful for this. I unfortunately did not have a chance to meet Pasha 183. But thanks to the organizers for giving me the opportunity to learn about his work.

Since a long time I haven’t been touched so emotionally by such great content and a succinct presentation with great works and great texts.

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Vasili Tsereteli at the opening of the exhibition.  Photo: Moscow Museum of Modern Art

Vasili Tsereteli at the opening of the exhibition.
Photo: Moscow Museum of Modern Art

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For more information I would like to quote a passage from a press release about the exhibition:

The Moscow Museum of Modern Art presents the first solo exhibition of the artist Pavel Pukhov (1983–2013) who has been best known as Pasha 183, his alias. As far as the Russian museum activities are concerned, his exhibition at the MMOMA is the first project in which museum space and street art will join forces to highlight the oeuvre of a particular artist.
The spray-painted murals of Pasha 183 were just a part of the whole story. Graffiti was the artist’s medium of choice at the beginning of his career back in 2002. However, the works displayed at the MMOMA will enable the spectator to see some other facets of the street art Pasha 183 brought to light later in his career e.g. monumental installations using light and optical effects. The works of Pacha 183 address issues such as the dominant role of an industry in modern society, tackiness and commercialization (Industry, Alionka), loneliness (Locked Up), and ways of stepping out of the comfort zone (To Those Who Set the Bridges on Fire – a Dedication)Marking the anniversary of the August Coup of 1991, Pasha 183 transformed the glass doors of the Moscow Metro into the images of riot police officers (Truth on Truth – 19/8/91 – a Reminder). To pay homage to the victims and heroes pertinent to the Great Patriotic War, the artist projected the image of a 1945 gun salute on to a wall (The V-Day). The non-street artworks by Pasha 183 have become part of private collections located in Paris, London, and Moscow.

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Photo: Moscow Museum of Modern Art

In 2012 the international public learned about Pasha 183 after a number of foreign publications – including The Guardian, The Huffington Post, and The Telegraph – had run articles on the artist. The artist displayed his paintings for the first time while taking part in the 2012 exhibition held in a Paris suburb. It was a joint exhibition of works by Pasha 183 and the French artist Nebay. Following the death of Pasha 183, the British street artist Banksy dedicated one of his works to him. It is titled P183. R.I.P.

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Photo: Moscow Museum of Modern Art

The ability to expertly blend the street environmental aids with highly-colorful terse images was a trademark characteristic of the art of Pasha 183. Music held a special niche in his works. The artist drew inspiration from the lyrics of Russian rock and hip-hop musicians. He depicted the musicians. In 2012 the artist was commissioned to design the scenery of the rock musical TODD. By making use of the most unusual means of expression to enhance the intensity of visual and sensual perception, Pasha 183 suggested taking a step beyond the mental bounds applicable in a set of circumstances.

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