OPENING HOURS: Tue – Sun 9.00 – 13.00; 14.00 – 18.00; Mon – closed

Feb 28 - Mar 30 2023

Youlian Tabakov. GENESIS

Between February 28 and March 30, the first exhibition of Youlian Tabakov from the GENESIS cycle with over 70 works - photographs, three-dimensional spatial objects and the video installation "Vacuum" will take place in the small hall of the Ruse Art Gallery. The exhibition includes a photographic series created mainly in the years of Covid-19, a video installation based on the work Ad Infinitum (“Toward Infinity”) by his father, the conductor Emil Tabakov, written in Japan in the 1980s and inspired by a journey against the rising sun, and objects, for the making of which Youlian Tabakov used an elephant's tail, a bird's nest, a coat of natural leopard skin, butterflies and charred wood, a children's toy from the 19th century.
"This exhibition is very personal and highly emotional in its charge. Most of the photographs and objects were created in 2020 and 2021 - a time when I went through the 9 circles of Hell. I take it as an observation of my inner state, not sure I can fully contain it yet.”
GENESIS in Ruse is the first exhibition of the eponymous 7-month cycle, which the artist Youlian Tabakov will present in his own format at different exhibition spaces in Ruse, Plovdiv and Varna. In Sofia, the exhibition will be with new works that have not been shown until now.
GENESIS is the last part of, and the title of, a triptych of three of my projects - "Blinks" (2015), "Portrait of a Dying Titan" (2021) and the eponymous "Genesis" (2023). In Sofia, I will show the last part of the triptych - completely new works, and outside of Sofia, the presentations of GENESIS will include works from each of its parts in combination with works from the series "Vacuum" (2022). This is my first exhibition cycle, in which I will meaningfully mix parts of individual projects according to the place of each presentation - 4 galleries in 4 Bulgarian cities"
GENESIS in Ruse Art Gallery includes the following series:
(1) Photographic images accompanied by short texts of rambling thoughts and observations on timelessness. The initial series, made in 2021, was born from the "emergency" situation Covid-19 and counts 60 daily posts on social networks, each containing a photograph and a short text about the image. A situation in which routine goals disappear to such an extent that the question remains about the meaning of what you did and the significance of the relationships you had with the people around you. "Vacuum" was created with the support of the National Culture Fund - Creative Initiatives session.
(2) VACUUM - a video installation with a duration of 27.15 min., in which parts of the musical work Ad Infinitum ("To infinity") sound. Ad Infinitum was born while Emil Tabakov was flying to Japan and watching the sunrise from the airplane window.
"He was moving toward the rising sun, and perhaps the sunrise was moving toward him, or they were both moving toward each other. At the end of the work they meet. Would the infinite be infinite if you met it?”
  (3) Facilities Mother and Child United, 2022 (elephant tail and synthetic rope) - Sometimes baby elephants grab the mother's tail with her trunk and she leads them. A process of continuity and development, of movement, and movement is life. The work is a small reference to Damien Hirst's MOTHER AND CHILD DIVIDED and a comment on the evolution of matter and the smooth replacement of the spiritual with the inert and the subsequent spiritualization of the inert mass in our consciousness.
Cherti, 2022 (remnants of genuine leopard skin coat, 19th century children's toy) - Appearance/shape is deceiving. Sometimes it gives non-existent content, and other times it hides the essence completely. What makes us feel more pain? That which appears painful, or that which is born of pain. If form gives meaning, does it not become real, or does it remain seemingly real?
Shelter, 2022 (bird's nest, egg and galvanized wire) The object was found in a storage room. In the egg you can see an almost fully developed bird in its "own home". Thus the stories are nested within each other: the wire took shelter in the warehouse, the nest in the wire, the egg in the nest and the bird in the egg. Although they are together and inseparable, each is completely alone and unable to connect with the others.
Nameless for the saviors and the saved, 2022 (butterflies and charred wood) - Born of "rescue" one of the definitions of the Russian INVASION in Ukraine. In ancient Greek, the word for soul and butterfly is the same: Ψυχή (psyche). The butterfly in Ancient Greece is a symbol of the soul, sometimes associated with the dead because of the legend of the goddess of the soul, Psyche, who returned from the realm of the dead with butterfly wings. Is the conqueror a liberator? Is the savior the destroyer?
Youlian Tabakov is a visual artist. His education includes scenography at the National Academy of Arts, Sofia, fine arts at the ENS des Beaux-Arts, Paris and Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design, London. After 2002, he settled in Sweden and Bulgaria, where he carried out scenography and costume design projects for over 60 theater and opera productions, plays and documentaries. He illustrates children's books and collections of poems, directs feature-documentary films. He has solo exhibitions and participation in group shows in Bulgaria, Sweden, the Czech Republic, and the USA. Some of his most popular projects are "Three Sisters" - an author's performance based on A.P. Chekhov, the spatial installations "Blinks" and "Portrait of a Dying Titan" - a series of photographs and three-dimensional objects, the documentary "Csvetanka". Among his awards are the "Steven Dohanos" prize for the drawing "For a Green Planet" Society of Illustration NYC and the "Askeer" award for the costume design of the performance "Idiot 2012" based on Dostoevsky. He was awarded the "Golden Age" for his contribution to the development of Bulgarian culture.
The GENESIS exhibition cycle and its individual series are carried out with the financial support of the Ministry of Culture, the Capital Culture Program, the National Culture Fund and Koyana Trencheva and in partnership with the Union of Bulgarian Artists, City Art Gallery - Ruse, City Art Gallery "Boris Georgiev Varna, Metropolitan Puppet Theater, Fotofabrika Foundation, Buzludzha Project Foundation, 62nd March Music Days International Festival,, 8PM, STREAMER.BG.
  • Feb 28 - Mar 30 2023