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Georgii Elaev

I am a curator, writer, transdisciplinary gay artist and researcher of Buryatian ethnicity, born in 1988 in Irtyshskiy village near Tobolsk city in Western Siberia, currently working in exile. I studied journalism and writing in University of Tyumen, and began practicing independent curating in 2016, when he became a part of an artist-run community Space Cow based in Tyumen and focused on self-publishing comics and zines.


During 2016-2022 as a part of this community I edited and published more than 50 works by local and international artists, organized two international indie small press festivals Komik Arts Tyumen, first in the Siberian region, two seasons of open summer schools Comic Camp for zinemakers (2018-2019), two seasons of self-organized artist residency Sunset (2020-2021) that resulted in same-titled urban culture festival. I promoted the Tyumen queer art community at international festivals and exhibitions Comic Arts Brooklyn, Chicago Art Book Fair, Short Run Seattle (USA), Comicfestival Hamburg, The Millionaires Club (Germany).


As an artist I self-published a series of graphic novels (the 5th volume is in progress at the moment of writing this text), participated in collective exhibitions of Ural Industrial Biennial of Contemporary Art, NEMOSKVA project and curated several exhibitions by myself.


In 2021 I began to study art history and theory, philosophy and curating in contemporary art, along with focusing on posthumanism, sound art and performance. I got interested in designing DIY synthesizers using recycled materials and found objects as well as using these devices in performance sessions. I took part in educational programs by Chto Delat School of Engaged Art, Krasnodar Institute of Contemporary Art (KICA) and GARAGE Museum of contemporary art.


After the beginning of war in early 2022 I decided to leave my hometown and adopt a nomadic lifestyle. Since February 2022 I traveled several places across Russia, Siberia, Osetia, Mongolia, Turkey and Georgia, experimenting with PureData, Max 8 and SuperCollider as well as self-made synthesizers and collecting an archive of sounds and video footage. At this moment I am interested in mushroom computing and the use of biodegradable materials in engineering devices, as well as game design and queer autoethnography.



Project:

Posthuman faculty is a research project focused on the use of biodegradable materials, mushroom computing and solar energy in sound-making devices. As a DIY enthusiast, I am interested in bringing complicated things such as environmental computing closer to everyday life of people like me who are fascinated by the process of making sounds and listening to the environment.


In this project I am going to refer to Homo Ludens, a work by Dutch historian and cultural theorist Johan Huizinga published in 1938. My idea is to introduce an idea of a biodegradable device through play and for that I would like to use the medium of a video game, respectful to both the culture of Siberian DIY music instruments and Buryatian traditional board game Shagai Naadan.


During this project I am going to research both roots of Shagai Naadan as well as modern technologies that are allowing the use of biodegradable materials in computational and sound-making devices. I am going to experiment with materials, software and hardware, documenting the whole process in Minecraft.


Additionally, I would like to host several workshops on the topic of environment-friendly DIY synthesizers out of recycled materials.


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