</Dreamscapes In Focus: Galya Budagova's Installation At The 'Outsider' Exhibition>
by </odra>
</odra> continues to shine a light on new names in contemporary art. This time it’s Galya Budagova, a Russian up-and-coming artist and photographer, who has recently won an award in photography from the A-list society of American art and is also a winner of the Hungarian Contemporary Art Prize.

In her photographs, Galya delves deep into the realms of nostalgia, friendship and intimacy. Her approach is introspective, as if in a photographic diary. She often employs point-and-shoot cameras and unconventional angles, photographing with minimal distance between herself and her subjects. Her works serve as both observations of the world around her and interpretations of what she observes.
Since 2016, she has been travelling through Europe, Africa and Asia. Galya tells ODRA that one of her most memorable experiences so far has been her visit to Vietnam, where she took part in the “Bloom x Outsider” art and music festival held in Hanoi in November, 2020. For the Outsider art exhibition, participants were encouraged to explore the theme of "an outsider" in a free and uninhibited manner within the vast expanse of an ecological park.
Her chosen theme was the enigmatic world of dreams — a realm that exists outside the boundaries of conscious, tangible reality. Her medium: a series of photographs printed on a sturdy white fabric. The photographer tells ODRA that she wanted these photographs to serve as a window to her innermost thoughts and experiences. That is why she aimed to create a vision of authentic, unfiltered memories caught in real time rather than of a carefully staged composition.

The theme unfurled through black-and-white photographs, capturing water in long exposures. Water, in its essence, symbolizes weightlessness on Earth — a fluid, ever-changing expanse. In these images, blurred and nearly indistinct, vivid figures drift against an almost black backdrop. This is a metaphorical representation of dreams’ fleeting nature, how they appear, burn brightly, and vanish rapidly.
Galya's black-and-white depictions within the lush greenery of the park symbolize the absurdity and indecipherability of dreams. In dreams, events unfold in ways that defy logic and coherence, much like the amalgamation of elements within her photographs, where elements coexist despite the fact that they could never coexist anywhere but in the realm of dreams.
One of her photographs features a transcript of a dream recounted by a young boy named Kirill. In his dream, Kirill navigates a surreal landscape (pic above).

Galya Budagova's works at the "Outsider" art exhibition resonate with the festival’s theme and encapsulate the essence of dreams — ephemeral, surreal, and ever-elusive. Through her lens, she invites audience to ponder the boundaries between reality and the subconscious, where the ordinary and the extraordinary intermingle.
Gallery / Galya Budagova