Aleksey Naumchik

Y MINSK 2011-2016 (Book in progress)

Impressed by his walks around Minsk, Benjamin Cope wrote in 2002 that the city is full of ghosts of communist epoch, that a human being feels small and miserable in the absence of private space, and also about the emptiness of pseudo-classical architectural forms that the urban space is filled with. What is described by Cope are the remains of the dream of communist paradise, with which Belarus has not yet fully parted.

Over the 25 years that had passed since the collapse of the USSR most of the post-soviet countries have joined the dreams of a new paradise - a capitalist one. It would be difficult to say that this tendency has not touched Belarus. Glass skyscrapers rise in the centre of Minsk, foreign investors bring capital into large urban projects. New architecture - contrasting and overriding the old one, it seems, should become a sign of changing self-consciousness of people. But is it not an empty shell, a decoration to a play in which we have no part? Aleksey Naumchik is studying the life of a new generation in the circumstances of changing urban landscape. Who are these young people brought up and in some cases even born at the time of the unchanging political power? Does the urban space of contemporary Minsk align with their needs and could their voice be heard? The photographer is asking if the youth of today can be represented without pre-established symbols and cliche? How do the feelings of anxiety and the concern over lost futures, found on the photographs, connect to the themes of soviet and(or) western art, and what is their local specificity?

Vera Zalutskaya


As part of the exhibition "PRAFOTA award finalists", CECH, Minsk, BY. 2016


As part of the exhibition "Measurements of Emptiness", Gallery of Contemporary Art, Minsk, BY. 2015


As part of the exhibition "Process". CEH gallery, Minsk, BY. 2014