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D. Kochanovich / SPACE ICON

As far as is known, in accordance with Newton's equation of masses and the square of the distance between point centers of two bodies it is possible to deduce that any object of the Solar system has a greater influence on us than any person standing by our side, habitual things and entities… However, plunged into ordinary experience, we do not feel this influence, do not hear the rhythm of the ionosphere. In his Space Icon series Kochanovich creates a visual image of this permanent proportion. He makes the universe visible without Hubble's displays, binoculars and telescopes, but directly with the naked eye of the creature, watching through pupils of thousands of artists since the Age of Reptiles - through quattrocento and postmodern times - its filiform tracer tetrahedrons, zigzags of its plasma, ionized hydrogen zones of nebulas, presence of MATTER in conformity with Rosseland's great theorem.

Whereas astronomers employ technically sophisticated methods of determining the distance, the galactic mass density. Kochanovich brings us back to the pre-historical mode to view the universe, which is not based on parallaxes, nor on the celestial sphere projection, nor on Hubble's optics, but on the insight into the ecliptic and the infinite horizon within the subject whose existence is nothing but the surface between the outer space of the Metagalaxy and the inner world of emotion. Kochanovich's experience is a meditatively out-of-body, contemplating gliding along this surface, gliding based on ravishing ascertaining and reiteration of the zigzags of the canvas, Cepheids' labyrinths and the stars of the Lyre. Every picture in the Space Icon cycle may be an illustration of Ray Bradbury's best works' and chefs-d'oeuvre of science fiction.

But Kochanovich is always complicated. A critic is sometimes forced to utter an exclamation: Dmitry, you are similar to Roerich! (Tibet, Cosmos, Light, optics of the horizon, Spirit, ecumenism). Nevertheless, in Kochanovich's works all this classic theme of the Russian cosmism of the beginning of the 20th century has a special plastic vector to…music (Alan Parsons, Klaus Schulze, Artemyev). The artist does not call upon us to anything, he just puts us in a new coordinate system, in a new perspective of the universe. The universe is not in a manual of astronomy, it is not there, it is here, on our shoulders, behind us, surrounding and being retracted into a music of planes, lavishing us with the permanent infinite horizon of the distance.

According to Schredinger's relation, we can sustain the physical thermodynamic presence of the universe, having one hundred and fifty light years in its diameter, only because we have the same span within us. The proportional symmetry of the outer (mass, density of matter, monstrous size of the Metagalaxy) and the inner (infinite bends of reflection, the ocean of the past, divided into two, totality of Eros and "I"'s borders that slip away) - this is all the basis of Max Plank's esthetically comprehensible quantum mechanics in Kochanovich's Space Icon interpretation. Probably, this is exactly what the great heretic Persian Mani's idea was when he used to say: above is what is below. For Kochanovich's Space Odyssey paradoxically turns into creating icons, wherein through compression of gas spheres of Kant-Laplace's nebulas, through quasars' and distant stars' gravity, through the Appollonic and Dyonisic beginnings of the Cretan sculpture there suddenly appear familiar traits of Andrei Roublev's and Theophanes the Greek's icons. Spherical luminescence of pulsars is unexpectedly refracted and turns into the fragile nimbus of a Christian's saint figure. Kochanovich's painting is possibly an attempt to see sanctity not only in the sphere of the subject and his actions, morals, in familiar traits of the old monk Zosima and Alyosha's righteousness - characters in "The Karamazov Brothers" by Dostoyevsky, but also in the strict permanency of geometry, in pulsation and organization of reasonable matter, in incomprehensible mathematics of the scope of the universe.

Meanwhile, in Kochanovich's experience there isn't any mysticism either of the Teutonic caliber (Eckhart, B?hme, Silesius), or of the Byzantine one. Kochanovich's mysticism is surgically rational, logical; there is no nebulous banality, no ineffable musicality, no similarity to Roerich; this mysticism is that of Newton and Bruno, set to the part of the Moog Voyager analog sequencer, accompanied by the Oberheim drum machine. It is music that is the language by means of which it is possible to communicate something substantial concerning Kochanovich's world and his works. Employing the traditional method - speaking about art, i.e. transmitting plastic and images through discrete portions - word-units - and assembling them into a field of sense, we are hardly to gain comprehension of the artist's idea, for the mystic continuum of cosmos, expressed verbally, is broken into senseless semantic corpuscles, unable to expose to us the Master's sphere. It is music that is capable of communicating order, measure, intensity and languor of the "Giotto Universe", watching "Space Voyager", non-euclidianity and rationality of the "Spiral", erotic trigonometry of the "Swan". To speak about pictures employing words is as good as to try to find the Cartesian coordinates of the point that does not exist in space. It is music that is a pure form, i.e. plastic of the visible, pulsation and kinetics of the objectivity, communicating the undistorted rhythm.

And one more point. In Kochanovich's works there is an image of the infinite vault of heaven, which is not, however, given to us in its romantic openness, accessibility. Between the viewer and the vault of heaven, the desired and magnetic spiral of the universe, there are some unexpected fortification works, a fabric sheet, a destroyed part of a building, a column, etc. This image of the artistic barrier problematizes the viewer's communication with the main event of the picture - with the pulsation of the Galaxy. The viewer feels the barrier, the test, the tabooized and unbeaten character of the direct path. There remain only indirect, winding roads of experience, where the shortest distance between two points is no longer a straight line, but an arc, a sinusoid, a curve on the ecliptic, the surface of an elliptical orbit, a trajectory of a space shuttle with Klaus Schulze on board.

S. GARIN, Ph.D. assistant professor