Natalia Drobot

Artist Statement

"Nostalgic love can only survive in a long distance relationship” -- S. Boym

Recently, much attention has been given to the impact of the collapse of the Soviet Union (USSR). For some, this collapse caused post-communist nostalgia - Ostalgia. Initially, the term “Ostalgia” was only related to the feelings of Ossis (german: “Ossis”) - former citizens of the GDR. However, today this phenomenon is increasingly used in relation to former citizens of the Soviet Union, especially immigrants from the countries of the former USSR. Ostalgia was studied by philosophers, sociologists and psychologists, but in the contemporary art, Ostalgia is mainly exhibited through the use of Soviet symbols, consumer products, objects, photographs, military uniforms ..., in short through everything that people have kept since the “good old days”.

In my interpretation Ostalgia is any emotional connection with the Soviet past, which is reflected in a peculiar selection of memories from an autobiographical memory. My research aims to study Ostalgia through artistic techniques to deduce the image of Ostalgia in contemporary art by creating my own artwork and their analysis.

-- Natalia Drobot

Bio

Natalia Drobot (°1984) is a visual artist and PhD researcher in the arts originating from Belarus (Wit-Russia). She was born in Minsk, in the former Belarusian Soviet Socialistic Republic. Living during the Perestroika, the time of changing and new dreams, in 2003 she stopped her study at the University in Minsk and did a sabbatical to travel through Europe. After 5 years being an au-pair in Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium, she started her study in the arts at the Provincial University College of Limburg ( PXL-MAD ), Hasselt, Belgium in 2008, and graduated in 2013 as a Master of Fine Art. Immediately in 2013 she started her PhD research in the arts at the University of Hasselt (Belgium). Research is driven by her fascination for the Soviet topic in Contemporary Art – Ostalgia, and create a body of her work concerning this matter.

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