AROTIN & SERGHEI – contemporary art research and creation
Alexander von Arotin & Serghei Victor are forming an artist duo, specialized in the creation of large–scale installations that opens the surface of images into unknown dimensions. Questioning everything we see… both artists are working together in a uninterrupted dialogue, publishing their multidisciplinary intermedial installations and paintings since 2010 under the name AROTIN & SERGHEI.
“Marcel Duchamp’s objet trouvé dominated for a long time Contemporary Art. Instead of observing objects of the past, our research and creation are focussed on materials of the future, still in development. We build our artworks integrating new technologies and medias, our visions are in a permanent state of ambiguity and in transgression of our known space – an oneiric space of free thinking“.
The duo is working in a direct cooperation with scientists, engineers, developers, philosophers, and leading art institutions such as ARS ELECTRONICA, TEFAF, museum in progress, IRCAM-CENTRE POMPIDOU, KUNSTHISTORISCHES MUSEUM Wien, FONDATION BEYELER and BIENNALE DI VENEZIA. As European artists representants they participated at the conference The State of Fine Art in European Parliament. Free Space was the title of their workshops and conferences at the Luxemburg University. The work of the duo was also subject of analysis and thesis at University Ca Foscari, Venice.
cultural background and education:
Alexander von Arotin, born in Vienna, in a multi-linguistic family with origins in the Austrian-Hungarian Monarchy up to the Persian prince Zaccharian von Arotin, and fro the other side with influences of Russian culture. He started to study piano the age of 4 and had first stage experiences with 5 in Aischylos’ “The Birds” at Burgtheater Wien, in TV shows, as well as participating in rehearsals and shootings in the giant Mosfilm studios in Moscow (his father’s second wife was the Russian movie star Maja Bulgakova). So the spaces of theatre- and film stages and their endless transformation possibilities became more and more the real homeland of the growing artist. He participated in numerous concerts in State Opera Vienna, Schönbrunn Palace, as well as in Tournées in Japan as a member of the Vienna Boys Choir, made orchestral transcriptions at the age of 13, and studied the art theories of free–floating forms by Kandinsky. With 16 he was admissed in the class of Music Theory and Piano, later also Composition and Orchestra Direction at Vienna University of Music. With the composer Luigi Nono he analyzed the textures of Wagner’s music, and he participated also in his masterclasses at Centre Acanthes and in the same period in Giorgio Strehler’s Faust rehearsals at Piccolo Teatro Milano. These personalities encouraged Arotin to go further and to explore more artistic techniques. With 18 he started his studies of art, stage- and film design, and art history at University of Applied Arts Vienna, with Axel Manthey, Klaus Zehelein, Oswald Oberhuber, and workshops by Bob Wilson, Vivienne Westwood, a.o. Simultaneously to these studies, he create his first artworks and theatrical creations with texts by Pasolini, Garcia Lorca, Werner Schwab at Salzburg Festival Hellbrunn and Künstlerhaus Vienna, as well as the kinetic installation project “The Happy Day Balance” in homage to Samuel Becketts”Happy Days” realised for the inauguration Richard Meyer’s Art Center Stadhaus Ulm, Germany, starting point of the collaboration with Serghei Victor.
Serghei Victor, speaks in 9 languages his origins are in a family from Cracovia, settled by Stalin to Bessarabia, next the to the black sea. If one ask Serghei about his home country, he will speak about the texture of the black humus, about the unbelievable fragrance of roses and growing wine blossoms, about the dark red colour of wine and the sunset at the Nistru (Dnestr) region – the eastern “limes” of the Roman Empire… In fact he was born in the last years of URSS, in Chisinau, actually Moldavia, city of Pushkin’s exile, not far from the Danube delta, where also Ovid had his exile, in a cultural melting zone of old Thracian and Roman culture, but also influences from Romania, Ukraine, Poland and Austrian–Hungarian Monarchy. Far from soviet ideology, the giant library at his uncle’s house gave Serghei the possibility to study the old European cultures and languages. With the age of 6, he went to ballet school, had piano lessons at the music school, 12 years old he went to the theater college and with 15 to the institute for fashion and design. Afterward, he worked in the cultural management in his home city, and in the management for “Melodia”- the biggest Russian record label – in Moscow and Sant Petersburg. He studied in Moscow french language, and later Art and History at the Vienna University and Montpellier University. In Vienna Serghei started to collaborate with Arotin as a performer and co-manager, with growing experience this collaboration became a straight partnership and from 2010 both artists decided to publish their creations together as a artists duo.
- For their first common exhibition the artists duo chooses the TEFAF Fine Art Fair in Maastricht. The exhibition included the three dimensional painting Mute Space and Black Light drawing cycle. White Screen and Crazy Cells were to exhibited at Gallery Flore in occasion of Art Brussels and in Berlin. Pink Sound in Paris, Traces at MACBA Barcelona, Microcosmos in Milan. In Austria they realized [non lieu] – one of the first video mappings in the world – an installation for Beckett’s Godot.
- In 2013 AROTIN & SERGHEI started with the first part of their Infinite Screen project at Wiener Konzerthaus with Klangforum Wien in cooperation with museum in progress, as well as the solo show Free Cells at Bildraum Gallery Vienna.2014 Ars Electronica Festival showed in a large scale solo exhibition the intermedial paintings cycles, a sound installation, the 70 meters installation “EVERYTHING WE SEE COUD ALSO BE OTHERWISE” in homage to Ludwig Wittgenstein, as well as a real time projection with space modules with BrucknerOrchestra Linz.
- In 2015 the duo realised White Point a subliminal video installation for wall and floor in 8K for the media collection of Deep Space, ARS ELECTRONICA. The installation and live animation Infinite Screen part I is shown for the inauguration of Biennale di Venezia – Musica, and the installation Faces of an Infinite Screen curated by Martina Mazzotta at Gujral Foundation, Palazzo Benzon, as a part of the official collateral event of the 56 th BIENNALE DI VENEZIA.
- 2016 Light Impulse solo exhibition at Espace Muraille Geneva. Vers La Flamme / Radical Atoms Ars Electronica. Infinite Screen / The Babel Tower– 1200m2 installation with 5 hours/30 days sound composition, for the 125 years of KUNSTHISTORISCHES MUSEUM in cooperation with museum in progress. Light Cells solo exhibition at ARTCURIAL Vienna. Prometheus / White Point – 4x40m installation on 3 walls and performance of Scriabin’s Prometheus with Mikhail Rudy piano at FONDATION BEYELER.