Уяви Україну – Маленькі та великі історії / Imagine Ukraine – Small and Big Stories
Small House of Giants / Будиночок велетнів, 2012
Small House of Giants is a combined object, an architectural collage of sorts. It consists of a ready-made living container for builders from the 1970s (containers of such kind are still in use in Ukraine) and a model of a geometric facade referring to the modernist Soviet architecture of the same period. The window of the container is protected by a typical Soviet window grate with radiating bars like the rays of the sun. This ubiquitous element of the post-socialist urban environment is a recurrent motif in Nikita Kadan’s oeuvre, thematising the tension between oppression and dreams, impoverished everyday life and utopian horizons. The installation is accompanied by clippings from socialist publications, emphasizing the shifting social role of the worker within the new capitalist environment in Ukraine. At the same time, it also suggests a critical stance towards the fictive heroic position of workers in the Soviet past. Small House of Giants focuses on the conditions of post-Soviet Ukraine, where neo-capitalist relations are built on the ruins of the ideological society of the past.