Eurasian Cultural Alliance Public Association
Republic of Kazakhstan, Almaty
Nurmakov str, 79

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MEMORY SQUARE
Presentation of the book by Tigran Amiryan
Memory Square is a book by the Armenian researcher and art curator Tigran Amiryan. The book was prepared within the framework of the Art Prospect (CEC Artslink) residence, a month-long program that took place in Almaty and was organized by Eurasian Cultural Alliance. Memory Square was presented at the 9th International Contemporary Art Festival ARTBAT FEST.
In his project, Amiryan offers a visual narrative sketch dedicated to the building of the former NKVD in Almaty as an architectural artifact, where the common memory of the city's tragic past is concentrated. The main problem, to which the author of the book returns, is the formation of a museum in an era when museums are progressively losing their connection with real life, becoming a warehouse storage or an attraction for tourists. In parallel, we are faced with the issue of memory, which, on the one hand, lends itself to natural destruction and oblivion; on the other hand, it is regularly traumatized due to the lack of proper ways of articulating a private or shared past.
During the years of the Great Terror, Kazakhstan became a vast camp for those who were exiled here on trumped-up cases. In the center of Almaty, the building that housed the NKVD headquarters is still preserved. It is known that, in this building, not only were decisions made about the fates of often innocent people, but the actual executions were carried out in the basements. For almost 20 years, activists have not been able to transform the building into a museum in memory of political repression.