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Andrei Molodkin | Russia

Yes, 2007

Acrylic block and transparent tube filled with crude oil
45x75x10 cm

Courtesy of the artist and Kashya Hildebrand Gallery, Zurich

Andrei Molodkin, who represented Russia in the 2009 Venice Biennale, is a political artist on all that it entails. Molodkin, who recounts how in his past as a soldier in the Russian army he replaced the experience of using drugs with eating bread buttered with engine grease, is currently working on an installation bordering the absurd, where he wishes to produce human fat using an enormous pressure pot. Following the results of this experiments, Molodkin wants to test public opinion concerning the option of replacing fossil fuel, retrieved from the depths of the earth and originating in ancient dinosaurs, with the production of fuel from human beings.

As part of this project, Molodkin approached world leaders asking them to physically participate in this process and donate their part to the production of this energy, so vital for human existence… "The blood of humanity will be the future source of energy in the world," says Molodkin in an apocalyptic, messianic tone, merging doubt and defiance with grotesque irony.

In his latest works, Molodkin displays cages made of clear tubes filled with black fuel, where, he claims, the human concept is entrapped in the barriers of capitalist thought. The work featured in the exhibition, YES, is part of this series. Here, Molodkin deconstructs the positive meaning of the word "yes," breaking it down to the monetary symbols leading international economy, thus drawing out attention to nations’ pursuit after the origins of the black gold.