Georg Barinov was born in 1988 in Leningrad, in the former Soviet Union and emigrated to Germany as a child. The young artist is a board member of the Stuttgart artist collective "Platform 11" and regularly exhibits nationally and internationally. Barinov works under the pseudonym "Гоша" (Gosha), his Russian pet name. His Russian roots are reflected in his art, as is his Western influence - as in his current exhibition "No country for young men": the artworks show a synthesis between Russian and Western culture, combining subjects from the former Soviet Union with those of Western capitalism: there are matryoshka, cosmonauts and icons, as well as American status symbols such as the comic book heroes Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck and Bambi. Barinov's art is socially critical and political, questions our habits, and subtly criticizes the excess and consumerism of the throwaway society. The East-West conflict is also a recurring theme in his art.
When did you start working as an artist?
Art has surrounded me all my life. My mother had worked for a long time as a stage designer at the State Theater in Stuttgart, so I had many points of contact with the visual arts since my childhood. I started with really elaborate and large paintings during my medical studies in Berlin. There was no special trigger... at most the search for a balance to the monotonous studying.
Why did you start working as an artist?
An essential aspect or the reason why I started to make art was the attempt to process or to unite the big contradictions between my native country Russia and my today's native country Germany. This theme has accompanied me all my life and especially in childhood was something very formative for me.
Which techniques do you prefer?
When it comes to techniques, I'm very open overall, because I'm mostly not about the way of production, but more about the actual idea of the work. And if my idea is better expressed through a chalk drawing than through oil paints, then the decision is very easy for me. However, one aspect that can be found in many of my works is that of "upcycling". I love to work in my art with old utensils, packaging materials or disposable items. For me, they represent the remnants of our civilization and thus tell very special stories for me. Especially since the viewer can often find more access to a work, for example, because the used disposable item may once have belonged to the person's favorite candy bar.
Who and what inspires you?
I usually find inspiration in very absurd places. For example, I always find construction sites very exciting. It's not so much the buildings that interest me, but the materials that are carelessly thrown into these large containers by the workers. Here I have often been able to equip myself with exciting materials. Another very inspiring place is the scrap yard. Of course, an important role is also played by my hometown of Saint Petersburg, which has been an important source of inspiration for many of my works.
What would you like to achieve in 5 years?
A solo exhibition in New York.