The Morphology of War (2017)



The project won the Audience Award at the 2019 MUHi Young Ukrainian Artists exhibition organized by the Shcherbenko Art Centre and the Taras Shevchenko National Museum in Kyiv, Ukraine.

“The Morphology of War” focuses on the idea that each society gives birth to its own monsters. In times of conflict, they procreate. A friend changes his shape and becomes an enemy – unfamiliar, ridiculous, potentially dangerous. He experiences severe morphological changes. Collective unconscious influenced by mass media propaganda produces ideological “monsters” embodied by real people. This project is an ironic reflexion of the ugliness of an armed conflict that distorts the image and the content with its aggression, but it is also an exploration of how deeply these destructive instincts are rooted in the visual culture. A viewer is a witness of this Saturnalia, in its initial carnivorous impulse. The continuous line of monsters is reminiscent of the symbolism of the dance macabre taken by Ingmar Bergman for the conclusion of his film “The Seventh Seal”.

This project also seeks to explore how traditionalism influences the escalation of violence in society. Most of the images were taken from European illuminated manuscripts and bestiaries and reinterpreted in the medium of digital large-scale graphics. The absurdity of history does not change with centuries. It has potential to emerge or to be invoked, by particular political events, from international conflicts in Ukraine to terrorist threats in Europe, Syrian crisis, drug conflicts in Mexico, and the political tension in the U.S. In the context of global fear, the project is called to reflect the initial grotesqueness of any kind of armed conflict or political tensions.

“The Morphology of War” has already been presented in Ukraine and Mexico and has gathered significant media attention. Two solo exhibitions have been presented at the National Centre of Arts in Mexico City in May 2017 (supported by Tsukanov Family Foundation) and Museo Taller Erasto Cortes in Puebla, Mexico, in February–June 2017. Some works from the project were included in the exposition at the 5th International Odesa Biennale in August–September 2017.

sveta bedareva, svitlana biedarieva, morphology of war, morfologia de la guerra