Empty but revealing

KS Studio Detail

The power of the unseen
Konstantin Sotnikov sends us this gorgeous shot from his studio. Arranged like an old masters’ still life with candles flickering and ruby-red dregs on the table. Jazzy elegance and bygone vivacity still flavour the filmstill ambience. Who disappeared from this room? What’s the story behind this scene?
A glimpse into the studio as an allegoric visualization of the invisible, offers a mental framework to “re-evaluate the merits of the inconspicuous life, to search out some antidote to continuous exposure, and to reconsider the value of going unseen”, Akiko Busch reflects in her inspiring essay “How to Disappear. Notes on Invisibility in a Time of Transparency” (2020). The clairvoyant reflection was penned shortly before the pandemic pushed art, artists and cultural life towards an unforeseen paradigm reflecting the invisible.

Magic cloak of invisibility

Drawing on the notion that every presence echoes with its absence, the inverse of visibility can be powerful. In Greek mythology, gods and spirits walked invisibly on earth. The magic cloak of invisibility has always been a desirable superpower. For predators and prey, for living beings in both the animal and the plant kingdom invisibility can be key to survival.
So, for a short moment in pandemic times let us appreciate the power of the unseen. To disappear into, lose oneself in… and emerge transformed, with new hope for the possibility of a surer, quieter, more humane way of being.

With love from Konstantin Sotnikovs studio

How to Disappear
Penguin 2020