Ilya and Emilia Kabakov: Someone Under the Carpet

For Immediate Release:

Ilya and Emilia Kabakov at Wolfgang Roth & Partners, Fine Art


Ilya and Emilia Kabakov: “Someone under the Carpet” will be at Wolfgang Roth & Partners, Fine Art from November 30th, 2010 until January 15th, 2011. This exhibition is the first of its scale to be held in Miami by the internationally renowned couple. The exhibition includes early and recent installations and projects by the Russian-born Kabakovs. An opening reception will be held on Tuesday, November 30th from 7-10pm, to coincide with Art Basel Miami Beach 2010.

The central piece of the exhibition is the installation, Someone’s Crawling under the Floor (1998). The viewer enters and encounters a large space almost entirely enclosed except for a small opening. Looking in, one notices that something is happening in the middle of the space – under the floor – or more precisely, under the carpet. Upon closer examination, it becomes apparent that a human figure is crawling very slowly. The contours of the body, arms and legs, are discernable. It is crawling slowly, tracing circles “under the carpet”.

Adjacent to this installation, The Reading Room (1995), offers visitors an opportunity to interact directly with historical and informative texts, which illuminate the Kabakovs lives and works. Here, tables and chairs are placed, reminiscent of a library, enabling a leisurely examination of these materials.

In the second room of the 8,000 square foot gallery, the viewer encounters works from the Kabakovs’ The Flying Komarov. Artistic and textual elements from the album are displayed in the presence of four large-scale carpets found on the surrounding walls. The carpets present images of people flying in the air, high over the life below them. The images on the carpets reference universal themes such as survival, escapism, personal fears and phobias. The room emanates a sense of childlike fantasy bordering on the fantastic.

The West window of the gallery is dedicated to the “Ship of Tolerance” project. Ilya and Emilia Kabakov’s fantasy ship, which spreads the message of tolerance, has been built in different corners of the world. Local children participate in the project by studying the theme of tolerance and by decorating the sails with their original drawings. The model of the ship from Siwa, Egypt is displayed alongside three video installations, which document this project in Siwa, Venice and St. Moritz. The installation heralds the launch of the project in North America. Plans are underway for the project to be realized in Chicago and Miami in 2011.

In 2008 the Kabakovs launched the Garage Centre for Contemporary Art in Moscow, exhibiting their total installations for the first time in twenty years after leaving the country. Their exhibition, “The Incident at the Museum” and Other Installations, at the State Hermitage Museum in St Petersburg in 2004, was the first exhibition ever held there by living Russian artists.

Ilya and Emilia Kabakov are Russian-born, American-based artists who collaborate on environments which fuse elements of the everyday with those of the conceptual. While their work is deeply rooted in the Soviet social and cultural context, it still attains a universal significance.

The Kabakovs live and work in Long Island, New York. Their work has been shown in such venues as the Museum of Modern Art, the Louvre, the Guggenheim, the Whitney Biennial in 1997, and the State Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg. In 1993, they represented Russia at the 45th Venice Biennale with their installation, “The Red Pavilion”.

Wolfgang Roth & Partners, Fine Art is a vehicle for establishing world-class exhibitions in Miami and is committed to positive community engagement and social contributions. The gallery offers a rare collection of art otherwise unavailable in the Miami market. Wolfgang Roth & Partners, Fine Art is honored to launch the 2010 Winter art season with this prestigious exhibition.