Russian Pasha 183

One of the last comments on our Russian website is Pasha's. He wrote: "Thank you for the great report." For that report, we decided to remove the photograph you now see above, so as not to show Pasha's face, but now it doesn't matter...

 

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Two years in a row we published our inspirations of the year and inspiration no 1 in both articles was Pasha's work. In 2011, it was the work he made on the day of the 20th year of the collapse of the Soviet Union, and last year we were inspired (not in a really good way) with his global recognition as 'Russian Banksy.' The whole story showed how foreign, mostly British media perceive Russia only in black and white tones through the prism of colonialism, giving Pasha silly aliases, and basically promoting once again a British art. On the other hand it also showed how the public, art-critics and media in Russia can't value what is happen here and too often recognition to local artists comes only through the western media.

Most newspapers in Russia and around the world already wrote or are going to write about Pasha's sudden death, and even the "English Pasha" put a candle on his main page of his website to commemorate Pasha. We hope that at least after his death people will start to value his unique, honest and naive art; that at least a couple of his last works will be preserved on the streets of Moscow; that books about his art will be published and a big exhibition will be organized.

But what we really hope is that people in Russia and other countries and cities will not wait for foreign journalists to write about something happening in their own backyard to realize how talented, amazing and original some of the things and people surrounding them are. Many of Pasha's works were about Russia and values we lost after switching to free-market consumerism and of the influence of neo-liberalism, reflecting and romanticizing in his childish naive way the legacy of late Soviet times. Another talented Russian street artist Kirill Kto wrote about Pasha's death that now: "you better think of those who are alive, still alive."  Think of those around you who really need your support, value what they do, help them and do not give them stupid aliases they don't like and don't deserve.

 

Pavel Pukhov aka Pavel Andropov aka Pasha 183 or just P183 died on April 1st, 2013 at the age of 29.

 

 
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Pasha's favorite locations were abandoned buildings and distant places where he made his site-specific, black and white drawings and light projections.

 

Lots of Pasha's work have performative component and light—for Bridge inflater (?) he used molotov cocktail.

 

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On city streets he managed to attach to electricity as here attaching microwave commenting situation with facades of old building ruined with thousands of ugly air conditions. 

 

He even used remote control that made some of his works even more temporary and performative than usual street art and urban interventions.

 

One of the most well known works of Pasha 183—glassed made in 2009.

 

After a couple of arrests of opposition activists Pasha made installation on the fence of a jail in the center of the city.

 

Probably this is the greatest work of Pasha—made on 20th years of collapse of Soviet Union. He always been influenced by Russian rock of late 80-s with strong anti-communist (anti-totalitarism) statement. But after collapse many of them felt betrayed with free-market shock reforms of 90-s. Pasha tried to reflect this feelings making that stunning interactive work combined with video-documentation accompanied with a sound track by Mashina Vremeni (Time Machine—Russain rock band). 

 

Pasha's last works even more naive and honest, where he reflects his nostalgic perception of Soviet past through his childhood in the City of Childhood series.

 

Pasha had so many plans according to his Facebook page. He wanted to marry and at the end of last year he created a gigantic work welcoming in the new year, 2013.

 

This is the last of Pasha's work made at the end of March. It says "Those who infected us with this is healing our wounds... Am I incurable?" After his recognition by world media he had an opportunity to travel to France and when he came back he shared his disappointment with West. Most of his latest work as "Motherland" reflect his pain (in his honest childish way) about Russia that became a distant part of neo-globalised free-market world, atomised society and people who couldn't value what they have had completely occupied with consumerism.

 

 
Pasha 183's official website (in Russian):
www.183art.ru
 
Cover photograph by Egor Rogalev