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Perestrojka

Paolo Ciregia’s project Perestrojka focuses on the Kiev uprising in Ukraine. With the reportage photographs from his private archives, shot over four years to document the Ukrainian war – from the riots in Maidan Square to the parting of the Crimea, and to the war in Donbass – he reconstructs such events with overlaps, cuts and corrosions. The aim is to create a different iconographic repertoire, to revise and to change the way to tell the war, without erasing the historical and cultural roots of such events. Ciregia highlights the complicated ethics of representing war and conflict through photography. The concept of ‘Glasnost’ (openness) was one of the central pillars of Soviet Perestrojka, challenging state corruption and allowing freedom of expression. This same transparency is, almost literally, expressed by the artist’s editorial decisions to delete from the images the most improper elements of war photography, that is the ones we are most accustomed to. Through this paradox, self-censorship is used as powerful means of social condemnation.

Artist Profile(s)

Paolo Ciregia

Portrait of Paolo Ciregia
Portrait of Paolo Ciregia

Paolo Ciregia

Paolo Ciregia (1987, Italy) lives and works in Italy. In the last five years his artistic research has been focused primarily on Ukraine, first documenting the Russian Ukrainian conflict through a series of photographs, which he later manipulates and reworks in a new way. Using cuts, burns and narrow closeups he decontextualizes the photographs creating a new iconographic register, linked to the war. Political ideologies, alienation, and means of mass control are topics on which he based his research; dissecting and reworking the languages used by this totalitarian establishment, Ciregia's aim is to reveal the atrocities behind the war, destroying the false and arrogant patina created by propaganda.