Julia Kushnarenko, "21 Grams", Stoneware Body, 30 X 15 cm, 2020, $2600.
The Sculpture “21 Grams” was inspired by the story of elderly woman in nursing homes in Moscow, Russia.
They met in 1941 when her father took him to their family as an orphan. They traveled half the world while the borders were closed in the USSR. They had three children. He’d died but she carried on speaking with him. And after 7 years his soul returned and settled inside her. “Now I’m never alone, and I never will be. There is no boundary,” she says.
More than a hundred years ago scientist Duncan McDougall found out that after death our body becomes 21 grams lighter. You can believe it or not but when we lose someone truly close, we want our body to become 21 grams heavier. And those who believe sometimes manage to keep these 21 grams in themselves. This sculpture is dedicated to the love story of Natalia Karpovna Struchkova and her husband.
Julia Kushnarenko, Russia
is a young ceramist born in 1991 in Moscow, Russia. She has studied directing at the Gerasimov Institute of Cinematography in Moscow. When she first started with ceramics, it was more like therapy to her. Eventually, Julia discovered that it was actually a new, separate direction in her development as an artist.
"The only thing that gets me out of bed every day, after each setback, is the ability of art and work to pull you out of total loneliness, at least for a time. When I work, I finally find myself here and now without regretting the past and not fearing the future.
I still believe in soul mates as zealously as I have faith in that the only thing that distinguishes the real art and the real relationship from everything else is the thrill when touching it. It can be frightening, heartbreaking, uplifting, but it is always about extremely vivid emotions.
I grew up in a country where you aren't encouraged to talk about your feelings. This leads to a constant sense of separateness. And at a pretty mature age, you learn to feel the full range of emotions - not only a shame - afresh. It's easier for me to talk about my experiences through a distant object - it is that object suffering, not me. It is a vase that hates/loves everyone, not me."