Alexandra Beteeva (she/her)
I am a Russian artist based in Glasgow, exploring roots as the cornerstone of identity.
Working from memory as well as cropped images, I am motivated by themes of immersion and invitation. I set stages and choreograph its inhabitants. The challenge is working out that balancing act — creating a world where figures cannot exist without the space and the space cannot exist without the figures.
Contemporary political reality in Russia sees a complete rewriting of history and no one is acting, paralysed in a world of mythologies and nostalgia. Myths do not exist anywhere except cultural memory. It is, however, a ruined and fragmented culture, with accordingly unfamiliar myths, which breed violence and horror. What is left among the debris of the cultural tradition and what is art’s role in filling this void?
Works featured in the RSA Annual Exhibition 2021, VAS Annual Exhibition 2022.
There is a conversation that emerges between the real subjects and something otherworldly, uncanny. I look at traditional fairytales for inspiration. The works are loaded in context, rooted in explorations of pattern.
I find myself drawn to my family’s old photo albums. I paint the past to transport one to the present, connecting the gap that explains the chaos, obvious now more than ever. I use painting as a tool to process reality.