In the Closet

Ilya & Emilia Kabakov


Installation, 190 x 60 x 60 cm.
Materials: drawings, wood, pictures, lamp, clothes

Collection: Collection M HKA, Antwerp (Inv. no. BK7024_M186).

The small room between two walls that makes up In the Closet is decorated as a kind of improvised bedroom, with a bed, cabinets, and a number of personal objects. The small wooden door is left ajar, as to arouse the visitor's curiosity; inviting him to peek inside, the work takes on a slightly voyeuristic undertone. Attached to the wall inside is a text, in which Kabakov reminisces about the place where he used to go as a child to read and to dream. With In the Closet, Kabakov seems to attempt to recreate such a place for himself. The work exudes comfort and warmth, but at the same time, it's a refuge, a place to hide. The title, too, suggests that something is hidden: perhaps Kabakov alludes to his previous double life as a Soviet illustrator and subversive artist?

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