Guerilla art in Donbass: Sergey Zakharov – the Banksy of Donetsk
After photography and film discussed by Walter Benjamin in his essay “The Work of Art in the Age of Its Technological Reproducibility” (1936), contemporary mass culture brought a new artform into being which to a great extent relies on reproducibility – graffiti and street art. Nowadays, distribution of artworks via Internet makes reproduction a common phenomenon.
Walter Benjamin saw technical reproducibility of artworks as a threat to their authenticity. According to Benjamin, the place and time of creation of an artwork are its crucial elements. But what happens with guerilla art, constantly in the state of instability and danger of being displaced?
After the establishment of the DPR in East Ukraine, Sergey Zakharov distributed subversive cut outs over the city of Donetsk. Because of their controversial character and direct political massage the art pieces had been immediately removed from the city centre. The cut outs gained a new life after having been published and distributed on the Internet.
The role of social media and the way of distribution of artworks will be in focus of my presentation. Observations on the phenomenon will be especially interesting in the context of political actionism.