PIZZA (02) | ARTHUR GOLYAKOV
Pizza (02) by Arthur Golyakov belongs to that category of artworks that gradually reveals itself as one approaches it physically, a crescendo, an attraction that gradually materializes into a slow and relentless reflection on consumerism and the waste of essential goods, stimulated by the undeniably effective use of the stereotype of gluttony: pizza.
A classic pizza box is propped open against the exterior wall of an urban building, covered by graffiti. The box is visibly full, and its contents appear intact, stimulating a sensation of hunger, a natural physiological reaction in the observer, somewhere between curiosity and surprise. However, after ac closer examination, the deception, a deliberate misunderstanding, becomes evident: what appeared as an inviting and irresistible pizza is revealed to be covered with a layer of paint, rendering it inaccessible.
But even more than the paint, it is the true nature of its composition that stands out: not flour, water, yeast, but rather a mundane and synthetic polyester used to simulate the crust and toppings.
Golyakov’s artwork is so realistic that it effectively achieves its purpose of provoking the viewer and prompting a reflection on food consumption and waste, among the degenerations of contemporary capitalism. The pizza box is abandoned, amidst leftover and rejection, as is often actually found and seen: that building and that wall could belong to any Western city, that box a symbolic element of degradation in its state of being discarded and abandoned.
A promise of happiness, the satisfaction of a need, hunger and food not as survival but as hedonism.
Pizza (02), as indicated by the number in the title, alludes to a ‘first’ version of the same work, simultaneously declaring its absence. Serial in its production, Golyakov narrates in this mediated manner the stages – attempts and errors – that lead to the realization of the finished work, a process that is actually always in progress, changing depending on the contexts.
Pizza (02) was exhibited near an officially abandoned building chosen by the PLAGUE collective as the venue for a group exhibition, which included the participation, among others, of Golyakov himself.
Pizza (02), 2022
Extruded polystyrene foam (XPS), acrylic, spray paint, cardboard, reinforced tape, variable dimension.
Installation view at “Credit History”, off-site show curated by PLAGUE, as part of the exhibition “Dirty Laundry” curated by Torre Alain, Gözde Filinta and Marian Luft. Photo by Lina Venmer. Courtesy the artist.