The solo exhibition of Irina Petrakova in Galerie Iragui continues the long-standing
collaboration of our gallery with the artist. Sculptures and embroideries of Petrakova were
exhibited at the group show of 2014 “Sixth sense you have, or what?” curated by Konstantin
Bokhorov. In 2016, Irina’s multimedia project Apotrebin was part of the pharmakon
exhibition (curator Boris Klyushnikov).
We are very happy to open a new exhibition season with Irinas solo show which is entirely
made up of graphics. The project has been curated by Anatoly Osmolovsky.
“The first work of Irina Petrakova, which I saw and which immediately impressed me, was a
drawn chair. It was a simple chair, but it was unusually drawn – it could hardly be seen
through the solid “hatching wall”. It was the result of the thickening of the hatching as if it
came to fruition out of it. At the same time this work was very mysterious, it wounded the
perception and frightened with some kind of hidden unobvious threat. The chair, perceived in
the artistic context as a sign of the reflexive art of the idea-conceptualism, acquired some
distinct intonations of a horror movie, terror and deep depression.
“The hatching wall” became Irina’s main artistic method. But you have to understand that
Irina's graphics results from withdrawal rather than from addition which means that “the
hatching wall” kind of has been existing originally, and the artist withdraws from this “wall’
its parts and makes certain objects visible. The principle is very sculptural. It is well-known
that the art of sculpture is the art of withdrawal; this has been the law when working with
stone, but when working with clay, the artist also mostly uses the withdrawal of its extra
The art of graphics, of course, is built in the opposite way. When we want to draw something,
we add. Line, hatch, blot...
But in Petrakova’s works, the “darkness” exists from the beginning, and in order to draw
something, one has to get rid of a part of this darkness.
The exhibition makes this method visible. This is not a collection of some random series but
a whole statement. We see how a figurative image is born from the wall of hatching, from the
The title “Come and hide here” is intriguing and somewhat mocking – being offered to hide
in the darkness, you are not even aware of who you are hiding with in this darkness”.