saint-petersburg

Valery Koshlyakov

Marble Palace

In 1984, Alexander Brodsky and Ilya Utkin imagined a museum that would house disappearing urban buildings, important and otherwise, as a way of salvaging the past and, thus, collective memory. Each building, reduced to a scale model, would hold equal status in the exhibit. “After all,” the duo explained, “each is suffused with the soul of its architect, builders, inhabitants, and even the passersby who happened to cast an absentminded glance its way.” Their project, notable for its inevitable juxtaposition of all forms of architecture and its muddling of high and low, prevailing ideologies, and historical distinctions, also acts as a helpful prologue to the recent sculptural work of Valery Koshlyakov, whose architectural investigations into the strata of cultural memory—and, at the same time, the transience of its “built” expression—seem almost to literalize Brodsky and Utkin’s “paper

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