A painter by training, the Russian artist Nikolay Polissky designs strange constructions out in the landscape. His work involves producing spectacular architectural forms that are always ecological. Fleeting and transitional, his pieces are meant to disappear over time. The artist produces his projects using natural materials to hand in the environment he is working, features of the landscape which are an integral part of a particular region. His ephemeral works change in step with the seasons, forming wood reserves during public festivals and even sometimes going up in flame. Beyond this fleeting existence, they remain etched in the collective memory, embodying a sort of social utopia. In his monumental sculptures, the artist designs spiritual and ironic symbols of traditional Russia – a “magnificent, static, awkward and monumental country all at the same time.”
“I realised that painting was no longer providing what I was looking for. By drawing and painting this space, I knew that I had to work in a concrete way in this very real place, that this was where my studio, my laboratory was. Contemporary art seems to me to have too little to do with the wondrous show of nature; it is too elitist. It has got bogged down with typically urban questioning.” Nikolay Polissky
What has fascinated Polissky is the shadow cast by the big ancient cedars in the Historic Grounds at Chaumont-sur-Loire. Looming plant silhouettes covered in thousands of vine-plants have mysteriously “taken hold” of the site, sparking new legends there.