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3-channel video, carpet, pillows, drywall construction
produced with the support of
Pinchuk Art Centre and Goethe Institut Ukraine

TikToker's: Viktoria Dzyziuk (@victoriadzyziuk), Roman Kobryn (@romkoko.b)
Artist assistant: Alexandra Smirnova
Soundtrack: the komakoma

Design: Taira Umarova
Thanks to: Valeria Schiller, Ivana Bago, Olena Kasperovych, Tetyana Pylypchuk, Oleksandr Burlaka, Miss Angela, Iryna Khodak, Oleksandr Khodak, Kharkiv Residency Slovo (project of Kharkiv Literary museum), NGO “Cultural Traffic” and pakufuda.

In his new artwork, Khodak explores the political potential of the trending Chinese social media TikTok, its algorithms and the possibilities to invent a new political language comprehensible to the youth.

The artist invites the visitor to lay back and dive in the stream of TikTok videos with references to Ukrainian avant-garde practices. The videos were mostly shot in Kharkiv’s 'Slovo' House, which was an important cultural centre in the 1930s for Ukrainian avant-garde artists, the majority of whom were eventually repressed during the Stalinist era. For this work, Khodak invited two TikTokers to Kharkiv to participate in the rebuilding of the city and create video content on-site, under virtually constant missile and artillery shelling. In an attempt to revive the broken tradition of Ukrainian Modernism, the artist asked the TikTokers to live in the ‘Slovo’ House for several days and to speculate together about the new post-war utopian country.
Right across the room from the corner with the TikTok videos, a huge drywall construction is placed; its shape refers to the aesthetics of avant-gard
e monumental projects. The construction is covered with quotes from the leaked viral video from 2007 showing the Ukrainian politician Mykhailo Dobkin trying to properly deliver his speech for a campaign ad for local elections in Kharkiv, with his political ally Hennadiy Kernes brutally instructing him from behind the scenes. In the installation, the artist juxtaposes an absolutist maximalist utopian idea of how politics should be made with the actual reality of politics.

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