Solo exhibition KINDERGARTEN. Childhood Denied, Bologna (Italy)

Solo exhibition by Anna Skoromnaya, winner of the Arteam Cup 2017, curated by Matteo Galbiati

Centro Unipol Bologna (CUBO)

11 April – 1 June 2018


CUBO has been supporting the Arteam Cup since 2016, because it believes in developing talent and shares the prize’s aims of promoting and supporting emerging artists. The winner of the 2017 prize, Anna Skoromnaya, will therefore see her work housed at CUBO’s Spazio Arte from 11 April to 1 June 2018. With the artist in attendance, KINDERGARTEN. Childhood Denied, the new exhibition project from the young Belarusian artist, will be unveiled on Wednesday 11 April 2018 at 6 pm.

The setting for the work is a highly unusual playground, where the children are replaced by moving images, their voices evoked by nursery rhymes in the background, incorporated within the shapes like toys. This intense artistic creation provides a surreal journey through the ruins of a fragile and delicate topic, the violation of children’s rights, impressively managing to restore contemporary art’s role of contemplating social issues in addition to aesthetic and cultural reflections. Child soldiers, child brides and child labour are just some of the forms this violated childhood that deprives children of all opportunities takes, and Anna Skoromnaya’s KINDERGARTEN cycle is a cry of outrage about something to which she felt a duty, and above all an urgent desire to give shape.

The works from the cycle Popcorn Machine and Cream Hand Mixer # 1 and # 2, presented at previous exhibitions, are joined by two brand new works created especially for CUBO’s Spazio Arte: Cotton Candy Maker # 1 and # 2, dedicated to the ordeals faced by child brides. Everything takes place in an air of apparent normality, with children, swings, slides, and brightly coloured building blocks, and the apparent peace and quiet of an environment where everything seems in order, under control and safe, just as you would expect in a play area or kindergarten. However, the illusion of this apparent normality is shattered in the cruelest way possible when, amongst a plethora of colours, sounds and images, we are forced to confront reality: Anna Skoromnaya’s holograms show oppressed, exploited and maltreated children carrying out actions or experiencing situations that we would assume were fiction were it not for the atrocities we see in the news every day.

As Antonio D’Amico wrote in the catalogue for the Must Gallery exhibition in Lugano: “While everyday life in our globalized world has the semblance of normality, in places that reason seems to have abandoned childhood is denied, and children are obliged to be adults and live in a KINDERGARTEN with none of the amenities or joy of a normal nursery”.

The exhibition at CUBO is enhanced by a specially designed, intuitive multimedia app that allows visitors to get more from the exhibition’s contents. This highlights CUBO’s aim to make the Spazio Arte a versatile and experimental environment, dedicated to work from emerging artists and from better-established creatives that want to present a new project or their latest research to the public for the first time. Spazio Arte aims to foster dialogue on contemporary issues, acting as an open, curious, courageous and inclusive container: a benchmark for artistic experimentation in Italy.

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