I miss the performances. This one, the very first one, I did in 2014 (and the others were solo and/or undocumented).

CameraCafe: will portrait for food. 

The theme of food appeared here because it was held as part of Restaurant Day — it’s a bit of a carnival in St. Petersburg, when all over the city any non-gastronomic establishments turned into cafes and restaurants for one day. Someone cooked his grandmother’s favourite dishes, someone fantasised not about food at all (but still a little about food too). This was a show, having fun and cooking something edible for money, making a holiday out of it, of course. 

I participated in Restaurant Day from the Fotodepartment in St Petersburg. It is an educational art institution where I learnt and was part of the community.

The performance consisted of taking pictures of people without any cameras, with words. I tried to transfer to paper in words and phrases in the mode of automatic writing what came to me in the presence of this person and in our mutual silence. 

As a café, I traded apples — people bought the fruit of knowledge from me in the form of a fruit and a leaf with words about them on it.

Here’s the description from the announcement:

- a performance the length of a restaurant day 

You don’t know me, I don’t know you, but we’ve seen each other — and you’re already imprinted in me, and that’s what photography does. 

And that imprint is definitely me, but so are you, and neither of us, and all human all at once, with associations and a habit of categorising. 

Andy talked about fifteen minutes of fame — I’m talking about ten minutes of attention and silence. 

You get the dish — and my attention. And at the end of ten minutes — your portrait painted in words. 

How long does it take to reflect yourself in the eyes of another? What is our image? How do we look to strangers? Next in line!

This is, of course, an ommage to my favourite book by Alessandro Barrico, ‘Mr Gwyn’. It seemed to me then and now that he understood a great deal about portraiture, and I wanted to do the same.

I have no idea if I succeeded! 

Photographed by Vera Zephyr, 2014:

Blog / Artist’s Diary

About my old performance. Victoria Dini Art

English (not yet summer) rain

and how I could not stop filming it
About my old performance. Victoria Dini Art

Kusama at Tate Modern

and my big love for her art
About my old performance. Victoria Dini Art

Camden Art Centre

my volunteering and two current exhibitions
About my old performance. Victoria Dini Art

I translated one of my poems into English

and I have no idea, of course, how well I did it
About my old performance. Victoria Dini Art

Baby Reindeer

from the perspective of a lesbian & sexual abuse survivor
About my old performance. Victoria Dini Art

A flaming bush

and my manner of work with it as an example
About my old performance. Victoria Dini Art

Capturing the moment at Tate Modern

and why I think that as curatorial work it’s bullshit
About my old performance. Victoria Dini Art

About all the cameras big and small

and why I hardly ever shoot with my Mark anymore