</A Story About Fragility of Personal Worldview in Six Zines>
author: Ekaterina Steshakova
062022 belgrade, bijeljina
Since February 2022, contemporary artist Ksenia Ilina has been keeping a visual diary, summing up the imagery of each month into a zine. Through the process of creating a series of disrupted images in colors of fragility, Ilina reflects on how everyday occurrences have gained new (and often horrifying) meanings.

The first issue was created as an attempt to proceed with a new reality that cannot be expressed in words. It features artist’s photos from February 2022 protests in Moscow and St. Petersburg, depicting blurred black masses of riot police spread across the zine pages as an abstract equivalent of an absolute evil.

022022 moscow, saint-petersburg

For the following issues Ilina uses photos taken during her nomadic wanderings through art residences and friend’s couches in Europe. Elder gentlemen pastorally playing giant chess under the Bosnian sun, hundreds of graduates wearing traditional student caps in the streets of Helsinki. For Ilina, these pictures capture moments of personal disturbance: Bosnian chess players turned out to be pro-war, while the graduation gave graduation flashbacks to navy parades. Ilina grasps moments of sudden awareness of irreversible nature of changes she observes into a carefree flow of images.

042022 hyrynsalmi, helsinki

Ilina has always been gravitating towards an abstract statement, turning her impressions into an impenetrable form of abstraction. Whilst her early series of textile designs resemble memories of the childhood spent by the sea, Ilina later switched to creating abstract video essays that capture lapses in the landscapes of reality and overthink it to the bitter end.

1 / 052022 berlin, hamburg, elmshorn; 2 / 072022 belgrade, bijeljina

Each zine exists in one copy which travels in the artist's suitcase along with a few things she packed when hastily leaving home at the end of February. Ilina chooses to print her zines using random printers that come across her way. Each of them contributes to the zine’s layout, occasionally running out of ink in the middle of the page or misinterpreting the colors. On the last page of every issue she counts up the number of days since February 22, 2022 with the hope that it's the last time she makes this count/making these calculations.

1 / 042022 hyrynsalmi, helsinki; 2 / 032022 lappeenranta, helsinki