A frozen lake in the Russian city of Vladivostok. A circle of 18 LED’s hammered into the thick winter ice with the use of drills and chainsaws. Lights flashing to the intense electronic rhythm of music from Denis Kazakov. The stage set for a show of ice and light.
Created by Concrete Jungle. They describe themselves as working at the “borderline of street art, architecture and engineering.” According to Feliks Mashkov, the co-founder. The project wanted to take advantage of the opportunity presented by producing art in an area with extremely long and cold winters. “Ice is the only translucent solid material that can be found in abundance in nature” says Feliks. Vladivostok is known for it. “Five months of winter allow for experiments with negative temperatures.”
Another reason was more local. To draw attention to the neglect of the ‘Mine Town Park’. An area in the centre of the Russian town which has become neglected and uninviting. “This park is a very important place for Vladivostok” says Feliks. “It has approximately the same location as Central Park in New York; that is, in the heart of the city. Now it is desolate, there is no lighting there, and visitors do not feel safe.”
The parks abandoned state did give one advantage though. Namely that the authorities don’t really care about what goes on there. “It gives some kind of freedom” says Felix. The kind of freedom perhaps that would allow for a show of ice and light to take place in the middle of it.
Originally opened in 1985 on the site of a former military munitions depot. “Art can determine what the future of the park will look like” says Feliks. “We are convinced that a revitalization of the park as the main public space in Vladivostok is only a matter of time, and that “Ice & Light” is the first of many milestones that will eventually see the space completely transformed.”
Concrete Jungle is an architecture and design workshop founded by Feliks Mashkov and Vadim Gerasimenko, both street artists. The company is committed to the design and construction of the urban environment and public spaces.
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