International Studio Programme : May 2006

Serhiy Bratkov


Serhiy Bratkov From the series KIDS: Jenya, 2000

Serhiy Bratkov is a photographer active in The Fast Reaction Group, an urban interventionist collective prominent in Ukraine during the mid-1990s (together with Boris Mikhailov, Serhiy Solonsky and Victoria Mikhailova). His work arrives out of a consciousness of his own time gauged against the political, social and economic contingencies of the "just past". Bratkov's subjects are seemingly listless within a liminal space inscribed by the temporal gap between Ukraine's Soviet period and its subsequent reincarnation as an evolving market economy and political anomaly. In recent work, Bratkov remixes images that approach the child as a subject beyond common juvenile clich├ęs approaching a generation of children that hold a residual consciousness of what transgressed while prematurely entering adolescence located in an antithetical elsewhere. These kids, forever, parentless and invulnerable, are consumed by an alienating experience of youth that is often reduced to exchange value by the international demand for adoption and abundant sex trafficking.