25/24: Marina Tsurtsumia - the VAULT
Marina Tsurtsumiya (1964) - film director. In 1987 she graduated from the faculty of film direction at the All-Union State Institute of Cinematography.
From 1998 to 2000 she was art director in the Ð/À* ‘Art and Craft’, the film ‘Love is Stronger than Death …’ about the first Moscow hospice, made with a grant from the ‘Open Sky’ programme + Internews.
Since 1994 she has worked with the advertising agencies Aurora, Art and Craft, RIA ARP, and Profilm, she is engaged in social advertising (1st Moscow HOSPICE, numerous jobs for the Russian division of GREENPEAÑE, and anti-war clips to the music of Peter Gabriel).
Tsurtsumiya’s filmography consists of 12 films, including: The Architect Konstantin Melnikov (40 mins., a videofilm for ÌÒ 2 TV (Hamburg) 1989. / Only Death is Inevitable … (135 mins., colour/b&w, 35 mm) 1992. / Island of Moscow (video-art 30 mins., broadcast by Ostankino) 1994. / Nearer to the Heavens … (from the cycle ‘100 Films about Moscow’, art director Savva Kulish) 1997.
Marina Tsurtsumiya’s work has been shown at international film festivals in Rotterdam (Holland), Montreal and Vancouver (Canada), Mill Valley and Denver (USA), Lyublyana (Slovenia), Istanbul (Turkey), Teheran (Iran), Dortmund (Germany) and Cannes (France).
Since 1997 Marina Tsurtsumiya has been collecting amateur photographs of the sky, taken by her friends and acquaintances in various cities of the world. Her project ‘The Heavens’ is a panoramic chronicle of the heavenly spheres made up of random photographs – a kind of global anti-globalisation patchwork, and everyone who wants to is invited to be a co-participant (PO Box 27, 125040 Moscow, Novaya Bashilovka, 6, Greenpeace ‘Nebo’).
“Observation of the sky, in addition to applied meteorology, has opened up for mankind the vault, cupola, hipped roofs and the plafond in architecture. That which people built out of stone, wood, metal and glass over the past five thousand years has only reproduced the structures of the firmament. Just as plafond painting only copied the vaults of heaven. Vaults of the vaults. All tall buildings – towers, pagodas, pyramids and ziggurats – from earliest times have in some way symbolised the vertical structure of the sky, and all staircases sooner or later led heavenwards. In the photographed sky, as distinct from its painted prototypes, we much more often see skyscrapers, not as an illustration of the myths of the Tower of Babel or the Heavenly City, but as a sky-blue photographic background to demonstrate the achievements of the Metropolis and Photoshop in the fight with nature for the benefit of mankind and the advertising agency.
The photograph of a fragment of the sky itself is of greater value when it possesses more feeling than visual object. And the camera becomes more sensible in the hands of someone whose hands are stretched up towards the sky. Thus the taking of photographs may return to itself its lost qualities of ritual.” (Yu. Avvakumov)