Marina Alexeeva (b. 1959, Leningrad, USSR). Since 1991 M. Alexeeva has been working with the media of micro-installation. The artist collects the sample interiors of public places and private living spaces placing them in small boxes – presenting sort of the concentrated environments.

The ever-increasing success of these “Lifeboxes”– currently one of the most in-demand works of Russian art – can be explained by the fact that M. Alexeeva’s boxes are connected to multiple facets of our artistic and everyday experience. They are not only “built-into” the self-description of relevant art, but they also unite cultural tradition with fresh modern-day customs. Most importantly, the artist includes one of the most significant functions that make modern life attractive: she turns standardization into a playing field.

Inside M. Alexeeva’s lightboxes, there is always a transformation of a standard going on. Any object in its normal place can, here, unexpectedly demonstrate freedom from stereotypes of behavior and perception. The author copies nature not in the sense of increasing the diverse versions of something, but by developing mimicry of the world’s vivid transformational power. The superb level of art in “Lifeboxes” is supported by the artist’s ability to look at things untraditionally and see their essence – new images.

After materials of the article by Ekaterina Andreeva

(contemporary art department of the State Russian Museum)



  • Saint Petersburg Stieglitz State Academy of Art and Design
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