Vanessa Souli interviewed Lita Poliakova for Azucar Magazine, visual artist currently residing in Dortmund.
Lita Poliakova was born in Leningrad in 1986. Having lived in the ‘remote’ society in Saint-Petersburg under the Soviet Union regime, she grew up thinking critically towards stereotypes and conventional ideas. Currently based in Germany she collides common and uncommon, comments on gender issues and consumption mania to reinterpret reality. The artist moves the spectator with the rawness of her images and sincere messages. Lita’s liberated artistic character welcomes the visitor to reflect on things that normally go by unnoticed.
How would you describe yourself as a person?
Lita: Intolerant, impatient, indifferent. Touch-and-go, still organized and self-disciplined, in my terms, not German. Hopelessly romantic.
Why did you choose such different media as collage and painting?
They chose me; or I guess I am such an exceptionally talented and versatile person. Nonsense.
In my opinion, any substance can be a medium to serve the purpose of expression. Analog collage speaks to me because of the inherent destruction and revival aspects, recycling decency and straightforwardness. Mostly, I create visual poetry and rethink social constructs that are flourishing in society and appear as a given reality to the new generations. Channeling the flow or “painting” appears to me as a non-verbal formulation; mythical, cosmic or divine – understanding depends on your belief system.
What is the source of inspiration for your art?
I do not really believe in inspiration. It seems to be another construct to speculate on. As an organism, I interact with the environment and share my discoveries with others to respond and reflect upon.
What is the process of creating a work? Can you refer to your materials?
Basically, my vision is 2D, however from time to time I refer to the objects and ceramics. Sometimes turn to video but even then, my focus remains on materiality. Despite my first degree in graphic design, I am not a digital person, not against technology either, just cannot feel it fully. I’m all in for the mess: smashed and rotten still-lives, blood, cosmetics, hair, paints. My recent “invention” is custom-made natural ink, which is a perfect metaphorical medium that connects the creatures and culture.
What have been the most important facts in your life that have influenced your work?
I was lucky enough that my parents were too busy with breadwinning that they did not raise me in any kind of tradition, morality or confession. Still, I was totally affected by isolation from the developed world first in the Soviet Union and then in barbarian Russia. Well, I would say, the escape from that environment contributed to my artistic practice a lot. At least, “God” saved me from the national identity, which I find quite liberating and helpful.
Is there some artist that has inspired you greatly?
Not only one. Sadly, first, you come across the most promoted names and their aesthetics are imprinted on you almost forever. Then, you redefine the prominent authors. I’ll name the “classics”: Egon Schiele, Cy Twombly, Francis Bacon, Willem de Kooning, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Georg Baselitz, Tracey Emin, Jenny Saville, Cecily Brown.
What is your biggest aspiration or dream as a person and/or as an artist?
To contribute a significant amount of novelty/absurdity to the world and to create more images I have never seen before as well as conceptually virgin messages. Additionally, to reveal the therapeutic side of pain. Then distribute this alternative perspective with the conventional order at museum scale and share the knowledge as an educator.
For more: www.litapoliakova.com
Lita (Life Is Torturing Awesome) is a full-time visual artist based in Germany. Accidentally originated from Russia, Lita directed her pervert power to digestion and rethinking of social frameworks artistically. Upon completion of professional education in graphic design and fine arts, she turned herself into a bizarre kingdom of contemporary art. Organic paintings and provocative collages are her key practices. Holding to biocentrism ethics and the fragility of human nature, she portrays mental and physical transfiguration highlighting the issues of aging, body imperfections, lostness and prostration. Inter alia meditating on social constructs and mass culture, Lita graciously recycles paper agents in order to catalyze novelty. Unlock the potential, fight boredom and ordinary, dare to join the vulnerable flow!