Arsenal (2019) is a visual inventory of photо cameras produced at the Krasnogorsk Mechanical Plant. Initially engaged in military production, the enterprise also started to produce civilian goods over time. Eventually it became the largest manufacturer of photographic equipment in the USSR, going on with production of sighting and surveillance systems at the same time. The military and the civilian products often share the same components, which highlights the connection between surveillance and photography.
The project consists of a single-channel video and gelatin silver prints. Due to the specifics of the printing technique the prints are going to gradually deteriorate over time with exposure to light. The fading process of these images poetically reminds us about the tools that make images disappear from our cultural memory together with a glorious past. Tsayder’s emphasis on photography’s materiality and intimate process begs the answers to the questions: what is the future of the image? How do we make them and how do we consume them? How can they continue to help us remember?
Single channel video, 29'47'', idea and direction by Anastasia Tsayder, photography by Irina Larionova, music by Kirill Shirokov
Gelatin silver prints, 30×30 cm
The project was commissioned for the 5th Ural Industrial Biennale of Contemporary Art, which took place in Ekaterinburg, Russia in 2019 and was curated by Xiaoyu Weng
Arsenal, installation views at 5th Ural Industrial Biennale of Contemporary Art main venue Ural Optical and Mechanical Plant