Under
the Mountain

 

PERSONAL EXHIBITION
CCI FABRIKA, MOSCOW, RUSSIA
CURATOR MARTH VON LOEBEN
MIXED MEDIA
2019

Sapun Mountain is a hill located southeast from the city of Sevastopol, Crimea. It is a seemingly unimportant ridge in the nature surrounding the city, while, instead, it has been of crucial tactical importance in the past. Both during the infamous Crimean War (which raided the land from 1853 to 1856) and the Second World War, Sapun Mountain was the epicentre of important battles, witnessing the bloodshed of countless valorous warriors coming from different countries who lost their lives fighting over this hill. On top of the hill, a large area dedicated to the fallen soldiers of the Soviet Union was erected after the end of Second World War, with a towering monument at its centre. It is a painful spot for the city and the inhabitants of Sevastopol: a place where different ages are woven together and the burden of the past still has a strong influence over the future; where historical facts meet traumatic memories from the wars and become the dreams of new generations. In this second chapter of the project, I wanted to pay a tribute to this beautiful place with a heavy legacy: the soil of Sapun Mountain is drenched in blood, rich with the metals of bombshells and explosives, and has become a resting ground where the spirits of the many fallen soldiers have found a sleepless dwelling. The text written by Marth von Loeben for the exhibition at CCI Fabrika in Moscow takes you through the layout of the different objects by the manner of a nightmare. Just like in all dreams, the unfolding of the tale is not chronological but follows the urgent drive of the narrator to climb the hill. The same drive pushes the viewer to jump from artwork to artwork and become immersed in the narration of the whole installation. They will encounter creatures engulfed in flames, a circle of brides chanting to raise their husbands from the soil of Sapun Mountain where they are buried, and they will all march uphill towards the last assault made by the thin red line.