Gallery Owner Elena Bakanova About Her Favorite Books

A life 2022

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Gallery Owner Elena Bakanova About Her Favorite Books
Gallery Owner Elena Bakanova About Her Favorite Books

Video: Gallery Owner Elena Bakanova About Her Favorite Books

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IN THE HEADING "BOOKSHELF" we ask journalists, writers, scientists, curators and whoever is not about their literary preferences and about the publications that occupy an important place in their bookcase. Our guest today is Elena Bakanova, director of the Paperworks Gallery.

INTERVIEW: Alisa Taezhnaya

PHOTOS: Pavel Kryukov

Elena Bakanova

gallery owner

Relations with poetry did not work out, there is only Brodsky

and Mandelstam

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The reading habit was formed by itself and as an opportunity to withdraw, an opportunity for mental solitude. Since childhood, I have loved to be alone and I have never been bored. As far as I remember, my parents did not force me to read. As a rule, after revisions in your heading my favorite books fall into the genre of "adventure" or "travel". Starting with "Dunno on the Moon", "Niels's Wonderful Voyage with Wild Geese" and later "Gulliver in the Land of the Lilliputians" or "Don Quixote" read in childhood, ending with Borges, Proust, Umberto Eco or Fowles, Houellebecq and even Bret Easton Ellis … All these authors form for me the corpus of the literary theme “Map and Territory”. The characters in these books are artistic half-freaks, half-eccentrics in search of the meaning of life and in flight from its philistine despondency.

The book that made a huge impression on me as a teenager was Marquez's One Hundred Years of Solitude. I think I am unoriginal in my choice of a teenage book. The most difficult relationship I had, perhaps, with Marcel Proust, I always read him not enthusiastically, but "through I can not," and he is a terrible bore. There was a similar relationship with Joyce. I once read in an interview or article by Umberto Eco that in the book "The Name of the Rose" he deliberately made a monotonous introduction of a hundred pages in order to weed out the impatient reader and set a certain reading rhythm. But the book is grandiose and further events develop very intensively, in a semi-detective genre. This writing trick led me to experiments with forced reading.

During a certain student period of my life, I read a lot and, as a rule, several books in parallel, so at the same time I mastered the basic skills of speed reading. In general, when I need to, I can read very quickly or arbitrarily change the reading speed. Returning to genres, authors and content, in my priority list of books I did not find anything "about love" or about the "greatcoat" of an ordinary person, which is so rich in Russian literature of the 19th century. I do not know what dictated such a personal choice, but, as I wrote

AS Pushkin, "Is there a lot of greed in the trough?" Another thing is "War and Peace", "Demons", "The Brothers Karamazov", the search for the grails, secret maps or Masonic conspiracies.

Vladimir Sorokin is the purest example of contemporary art in literature

and a continuous field of experiment with the tongue

Here's a brief summary of my whole mimesis, genesis and anamnesis. I return, frankly, only to Shakespeare, Tolstoy and Dostoevsky. As the ancient Greeks said, mine is what I learned or ate. That is, everything that I learned has already become mine. Authors and prototypes are lost, and I do not suffer from nostalgia. I read, however, regularly Bukowski's stories. Relations with poetry did not work out, there are only Brodsky and Mandelstam.

As a student, at a certain point, she completely switched to non-fiction, but the most that is fiction - philosophy, mainly modern French, structuralism, post-structuralism, etc. This was a compulsory program in the study of contemporary art and its theoretical foundations … Favorite authors then - Barthes, Deleuze, Derrida and Baudrillard. Contemporary art for me began with Marcel Duchamp. That is, not from the plastic, but just from the theory. The choice of contemporary art as a sphere of professional activity is also, apparently, so that it never gets bored.

My bookshelves are mainly occupied by albums on modern and old art, theory and history, and modern architecture. I like to see not less, and now even more than to read. Books are laid out and placed on all the shelves wherever they come. By the way, all my adult life I have been accompanied by books of the publishing house Ad Marginem, and now they publish a lot of interesting things.

Vladimir Sorokin is the purest example of contemporary art in literature and a continuous field of experiment with language. He returned with Telluria again as a great Russian writer. Pelevin for me is in the category of desktop literature, I read him as a whole, as an old friend with an amazing sense of humor, who succeeded in the genre of social satire. I'm going to read the Amendments by Jonathan Franzen in the near future, I put it off all the time.

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"In search of the lost

time"

Marcel Proust

I never had a chance to pass by this novel. Merab Mamardashvili constantly wrote and analyzed Proust. Proust also proved to be a cult figure for Moscow Conceptualism. He invented the genre of a new modernist novel - an existential journey through life, shall we say. Literature is hard and is an existential journey for the reader as well.

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Don Quixote

Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra

A great book about the loneliness and punishability of artistic behavior.

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The name of the rose

Umberto Eco

Umberto Eco is one of my favorite authors - a philosopher, semiologist, medievalist, so the novel is set in a medieval monastery. The genre is a philosophical-detective novel in which a monk (or abbot?) Turns out to be a serial killer, who cannot stand laughter and irony. A relevant metaphor for all time, as they say. Eco's list of favorite books also includes the novel "Foucault's Pendulum" and the philosophical analysis of art of the second half of the 20th century - "Open Work".

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"Map

and territory"

Michelle Houellebecq

This ironic novel by Houellebecq is a modern version of Proust's existential novel. The most interesting thing about it is that, in addition to the main character, he introduces himself into the novel as a character under his own name and commits a caricatured act of euthanasia over himself in the genre of "Texas Chainsaw Massacre". In addition, Houellebecq's novel for the first time contains contemporary art and its criticism as a phenomenon of contemporary culture.

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“Poems. Poems "

Vladimir Mayakovsky

A romantic character, poet, revolutionary, his figure intrigued me almost from childhood.

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Novel

Vladimir Sorokin

Well, what do you say here? Sorokin is a genius. The book "Novel" refers to the author's academic period - a period of experiments with the deconstruction of language, form and genres. The name of the protagonist is Roman, from the city he comes to visit relatives in the village, large-scale pastoral paintings end with a bloody meat grinder and intertext in the finale. “Roman shuddered. Roman jerked. Roman stirred. Roman jerked. Roman is dead. " "Novel" and "Norma" are a must read of modern Russian literature.

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Glamorama

Bret Easton Ellis

One of the main books of the 90s. Again travel - adventure - existence, again social satire, again blood, massacre and explosions, as I like, in literature, of course.

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"Magic

fairy tales"

Charles Perrault

Well, how can you comment on a book from the obligatory list of children's literature, and especially the fairy tales of Charles Perrault, whose characters, such as Cinderella or Little Red Riding Hood, have become the archetypes of modern psychoanalysis? Perhaps the anecdote of the American conceptualist Joseph Kossuth, which he told during his visit to Moscow (three times with me) to different people and followed the reaction: “Little Red Riding Hood is walking through the forest, meets a wolf. The wolf tells her: "Now I will rip off your clothes, throw you on the ground and fuck you in the ass." To which Little Red Riding Hood takes a pistol out of his pocket, puts it to his temple and answers: “Either everything will be like in a fairy tale, or I’ll kill myself.”

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Collection

Jorge Luis Borges

"Life is chaos, but the world is text."Intellectual, philologist, philosopher and librarian of incredible and inhuman erudition, who created charade books. Borges has repeatedly said that art and philosophy are almost identical for him. Stories-phantasmagoria, stories-edification, page-by-page notes to imaginary texts, hidden quotes and borrowings - all this fascinated me very much.

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Hamlet

William Shakespeare

Tragedy in five acts. In Russian translations of the XIX – XX centuries. Hamlet has been translated into Russian more than twenty times. Each translation is a new interpretation. And, as you know, “William Our Shakespeare” does not need lawyers.

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Demons

Fedor Dostoevsky

Great book. This, perhaps, is all.

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