Memento Mori is a site-specific project that will cover seven European metropolises in seven years.
Natalia Skobeeva believes that play is the most natural state for experiences to be gained and for boundaries to be questioned. She poses a question to each city, and through the participation of local artists, invites the city to play with the idea, adopt and transform it. The result is a live performance in the city’s commuting routes during rush hour, and a video piece documenting the experiences of the artists and commuters.
Skobeeva is interested in communicating with cities during their period of transformation, when the city is found in a liminal space. Artist is looking to explore the subconscious of each city separately and all together by creating the subtle uncanny situations during the unstable hours of transformation. The specific locations relates directly to the cities, choosing places of transience, for example bridges and ferries. The idea is played out over seven different routes, building on the significance of the number seven in many cultures as a symbolic number of life/death.
Skobeeva’s personal biography interplays with her exploration of the current state of human affairs and recent cultural developments, associated with on-line societies and networking sites.
Memento Mori Moscow is the third of seven projects and will take place in September 2011. The great city was asked questions in regards to consumerism, challenging the city’s perception of current social values.
Incorporating important urban features of the city, the project will take place on the most engaged routs of transportation in the city – its roads. The artists wants to play with an idea of a carpet as a symbol of achievements and prosperity, which is going back to many decades and many city’s generations. During evening rush hour seven city’s central narrow but busy roads will be paved with the very familiar to the city carpets, while the cars will be continuing driving on their usual routs. All seven happenings will be filmed on camera. After the event the carpets will be re-installed on the walls of the gallery and re-gain their status as an object, caring all the signs of car’s tracks. The city will be invited to visit the show and re-answer and/or re-valuate current social states of affaires.
Memento Mori Moscow will work with the same concept as Memento Mori London and Memento Mori Istanbul, taking place within the period that the commuting public is held momentarily in time/space. Differing from Memento Mori London and Memento Mori Istanbul, the commutes will actually be able to witness the happening, but almost unable to participate in the project as passing by in the cars, which will explore the concept of the project in the unique and site-specific way.