Carter & Citizen is pleased to present Dmitry (Dima) Strakovsky’s first solo exhibition in Los Angeles. The exhibition, titled “The Way We Tell The Stories That Tell The Way” opens February 25th and closes March 24th, 2012. The gallery will host a reception for the artist on Saturday, February 25th, from 6 to 9pm.

Dmitry Strakovsky playfully engages with the mechanisms of branding. Within the art world, and in the world at large, these carefully calculated, crafted and compressed stories make up an increasingly prominent part of our cultural landscape. Corporate and personal brands flow together to present slick narratives that avoid questions. Strakovsky’s works focus on the slippages that occur along the way. They dwell on the awkward moments that expose the logic of the system. Oscillating between instances of homage and satire, this exhibition highlights three works by the artist that ask the viewer to consider how public images of brands and the stories we create around ourselves are produced, controlled and disseminated.

1955 – Jasper Johns creates his iconic work “Target with Plaster Casts”
2007 – Target Corporation sponsors a solo show of Johns’ work at the National Gallery. The “Target” corporate logo is prominently featured in the press release next to Johns’ “Target with Plaster Casts.”
2012 – Dmitry (Dima) Strakovsky completes the arc of signification by composing a set of targets
from the Target corporate logo with text from the press release for the 2007 Johns show and shoots them up at a Kentucky gun range.

“Contemplating Utopia”
1968 – Russian tanks enter Czechoslovakia, suppressing liberal reforms of the Prague Spring.
1969 – Rolan Bykov, a Russian director, begins filming a children’s movie “Attention, Turtle!” USSR authorities nearly censored the film over the tank footage, which echoes the recent events. In the end, a clear choice to avoid a turtle that gets in their way, recasts the tanks in a “positive” light. They are seen as promoting an image of a humane and loving state. The film is released to the public the following year.
2011 – Strakovsky inserts a new character into the final scene of the film: a clay turtle (reminiscent of Rodin’s Thinker). The intruder contemplates the fate of his comrade in his own anthropomorphized way.

“all that remains”
1991 – Vija Celmins paints “Night Sky #2” The work is described as being “subtle and meditative.”
2008 – A security guard at the 2008 Carnegie International, Timur Serebrykov, fails to have a transcendent moment with the work and keys it. The damage to the work is pronounced “irreparable”. Museum staff members are forced to destroy the work in the presence of the underwriters’ agent in order to collect the insurance money.
2012 – Strakovsky pays homage to Celmins and to the destroyed piece by creating an illusion of the night sky composed of several hundred computer generated images, pinned to the wall with over a thousand dressmakers pins.

Dmitry (Dima) Strakovsky was born in St. Petersburg, Russia in 1976. He received his MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (2001). He has exhibited and performed internationally in venues such as the Moscow Biennale of Contemporary Art, CCA Ujazdowski Castle (Warsaw, Poland), MASC Foundation (Vienna, Austria), Grunt Gallery (Vancouver, Canada) and Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music (Japan). This is his first exhibition in Los Angeles. Strakovsky lives and works in Lexington, KY.

Dmitry (Dima) Strakovsky

The Way We Tell The Stories That Tell The Way
February 25 - March 24, 2012
Opens February 25, 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM

Installation Views

"all that remains (installation detail)"

"all that remains (installation detail)" 2012

"Contemplating Utopia (detail)" 

"Contemplating Utopia (detail)" 2011

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