Voloshyn Gallery presents the personal exhibition of Sergii Radkevych “30 meters above the sea level”.
Sergii Radkevych is a muralist, who natural way combines street art and sacral themes in his works. Such combination seems to be controversial, though, Radkevych’s art is based exactly on the balance of modern frescos and graffiti. His wall paintings root from east Christian iconography. In his works the artist conjoins simplified religious symbols with geometric forms in order to create modern spiritual abstract form. Radkevych does street art and public art looking for various architectural objects that either out of use or remain in indefinite state and turning them into spiritually active space. Also, he works in painting and graphic techniques which will be presented at the exhibition “30 meters above the sea level”.
The project “30 meters above the sea level” is by some means a kind of visual monologue that is made of small mis-en-scenes, the works that introduce personal experience of the author. The main counting point is subjective “self”, which spreads all around the environmental world and captures it. According to Radkevych, the works consist of different elements that interject each other. “They form a cluster of their own semantic signs that freeze in vacuum space. It’s the set of symbols which are conditional reality. For instance, space gravity and the long jump measurement scale are modern forms of social competitions and dependencies, having been involved in which we have to obey the rules of the specified “game”. The image of a donkey as a self portrait is a visual technique borrowed from icon painting where human images appear in zoomorphic depiction delivering diverse messages”, says Radkevych.
Concerning the sensual and compositional set we can create a parallel field with the works of Bosch and Siqueiros whose paintings are performed from the dark to the light with complicated individual images occupying the space and constructing organized chaos.
“30 years are covered like 30 meters above the sea level. Over the horizon line that is the absolute and the peace… ”, states the artist.
A part of the exposition consists of the works form the series “Letters from Ukraine” made in 2015 as Radkevych was staying at the residence in Freising, Germany. According to the author’s words, these works were realized on the edge of emotional landscape and “archeological research”, since “Letters from Ukraine” are actually the texts of news bulletins coming from the Motherland, having been snatched from mass media space and layered onto the landscapes of Freising. They were made literally of Bavarian soil and reflects the conflict of two worlds.
During the stay at the residence in Freising a few self-portraits “0 m above the sea level/Self-portrait” which can be seen at the exhibition were painted as well. In these works, the author was aimed at discovering his own “self” and self identification beyond the usual for us ground, search for ultimate state of peace, regardless of the circumstances and also, to transform own self portrait into modern iconographic image by means of line, colour, spot, to transfer a portrait to emotionless state similar to the art of Sumer and Ancient Egypt.
The work “In search of Silence/Homeless” which was applied on the wall of the gallery is the continuation of the street series project “Homeless”. In this case it’s artificial intervention to the space of the gallery losing former dissonance idea of painting urban environment. The main idea is visual change of environment, search for peace through the lines of face. It’s an attempt to gain the visual image that doesn’t have gender certainty and doesn’t arouse any odd emotions in such complicated modern times.
Sergii Radkevych was born in 1987 in Lutsk, Ukraine. He graduated from Lviv National Art Academy, Monumental Painting department. In 2011 he was awarded II PinchukArtCentre Special Prize. Nominee of the MUHI 2017 and PinchukArtCentre Prize 2017. The works of Radkevych were chosen by the artist Julian Maland for the presentation of Ukrainian street art environment in the documentary “The New Explorers” for CANAL+. Sergii is also one of the co-founders of the street art festival BLACK CIRCLE FESTIVAL. His works can be found in private collections of France, Germany, the USA and Poland; collections of International Fine Art Fund (USA) and Street Art Museum (St. Petersburg, Russia). At the moment, the artst lives and works in Lviv, Ukraine.