Tatiana Fiodorova, Vladimir Us, Vadim Tiganas and Denis Bartenev
Video, 2008, 36:33 min.
Curated by Stefan Rusu
Chisinau, Republic of Moldova
The MALLDOVA film covers a series of chronicles through which the authors comment and reflect the current situation of economy, culture, public space, and other aspects of the society of the Republic of Moldova in a counter-documentary style.
“Phantom State”, the first part of the film, was produced by Tatiana Fiodorova. Its subject is citizenship and state disintegration in the Republic of Moldova. After the disappearance of the Soviet Union, the majority of states from the post-soviet space didn’t manage to realize themselves as states in principle. These states either failed to control their territory or represented a besieged democracy while it was controlled by external influencers. The Republic of Moldova doesn’t seem to be an exception in this case. Moldova possesses none of the traits of a state: its territory is divided; there is no government that could control this state within its borders; the people here were never and will never be homogenous from the ethnical point of view; and a nation in the political and civic sense failed to be constituted.
In the second part of the film the phenomenon of cultural houses is investigated which was very common in the socialist era. In Romania they were known as “Căminul Cultural” and have actually ceased to exist. In case of cultural houses in the Republic of Moldova it is the other way around: they still exist and local bureaucrats are looking to maintain their function. The precarious condition in which we find cultural houses today is commented by former activists that worked previously in one of these cultural houses in the rural part of Moldova and experts that were invited to collaborate in this project.
The third part of the film is entitled “The Locality with a Single Monument”, realized by Vladimir Us and Vadim Ţigănaş. The film addresses the controversial facets of the public space. With the break-up of the socialist bloc, the latter goes through a new type of transformation, being subject to changes day by day. Before 1989, the public space used to be excessively politicized and ideology-based, being dominated by sculptures and architectural elements of a strong monumental character. After obtaining the independence of the Republic of Moldova, the notion “public space”, as well as that of public institution or function, has only recently been put up for discussion. It is evident that the new liberal framework is much more superior to the previous regimes and manages to incorporate most of the discourse types, including new discourses that used to circulate in this space until recently. The inter-penetration of elements belonging to the communist ideology with capitalist symbols, the cohabitation of patriotic propaganda with the free market propaganda, people’s liberation from a repressive regime doubled by their liberty conditioning through limitation of their purchasing power, etc. – all these characterize the transition period that we all are now going through.