Antonina Baever’s work uncovers cracks in the seemingly harmonious status quo. Analyzing “errors” of different kinds, she proposes alternative algorithms that change viewers’ perceptions and take them beyond the boundaries of traditional relationships. The subjects of her work include prostitutes placed in unfamiliar settings under the close scrutiny of a video camera; state symbols explained in slang; an artist engaging in the intimate process of grooming; and a viewer who has come to an exhibition and been given unusual instructions by the artist. A new stage in Baever’s work has been marked by the appearance of her alter ego, Genda Fluid. Increasingly abandoning the traditional social system of relationships, she constructs and brands her own utopia based on contemporary post-digital notions of the ideal world. Genda Fluid, a digital version of Antonina Baever, will live in this world in the near future. She will not be hampered by conservative social conventions, rudimentary moral norms, and outdated laws of physics. In this world, queer theory, which declares the non-normative to be the norm, is carried to such an extreme that it becomes superfluous. This world will contain none of the usual identities that evoke pain, suffering, war, and false cognitive efforts: it will feature only ideal environments and interfaces. The installation The Golden Mean (2017), which uses the corporate style and some decorative elements of the future, is the first major presentation of this impending queer utopia.
Antonina Baever (b. 1989, Moscow, Russia) lives and works in Moscow. She graduated from the Moscow State Art and Cultural University in 2010 and from the Rodchenko Moscow School of Photography and Multimedia in 2013. Solo exhibitions include: Golden Words, Moscow Museum of Modern Art, Moscow (2015); Time Shall Be No More (with Dmitry Venkov), Manege, Moscow (2014); Socialism in a Dream, Muzeon Art Park, Moscow (2014); and Getting There Together, Triumph Gallery, Moscow (2013). Exhibitions as curator include: Young Blood, Winzavod Center for Contemporary Art, Moscow (2016); Rebel Rousers, Flacon Design Factory, Moscow (2015); Hände Hoch!, Open Gallery, Moscow (2015); Trends, Gogol House, New Wing, Moscow (2015); 1:0, Praktika Theater, Moscow (2014); and Moscow Baroque 2014, Triumph Gallery, Moscow (2014). She was awarded the prize for best film at the ESF Extra Short Film Festival in the nomination “Video” (Russia, 2013).