MARIA IONOVA-GRIBINA
photographer
+7 905 718 77 72
ionovagribina@ya.ru

Maria Ionova-Gribina © 2012

Site created by Zakhar Day

Отцы / FATHERS

Проект «Отцы» посвящен исследованию самоидентификации современного российского мужчины через родительство. Для женщины подобная тема сама по себе естественна и близка. Женщина начинает осмысливать своё гипотетическое материнство с детства. Неважно – есть ли у неё дети, собирается ли она их иметь или намеревается остаться бездетной. Она всегда представляет себе новое качество собственной жизни. Знает заранее, что материнство отразится не только на привычном укладе жизни, но и навсегда изменит статус и саму ее сущность в глазах социума и в её же собственных глазах. «Мать» и «не-мать» — это основополагающие категории женской идентичности.
Всё не так однозначно, когда речь идет об отцовстве. Оно не так часто становится предметом интереса художников, работающих с темами самоидентификации и самопрезентации, значительно меньше присутствует в визуальной дискуссии. Готов ли современный мужчина быть отцом? Должен ли он чего- то достичь (и чего именно), прежде чем “заводить” детей? Влияет ли наличие детей у свободной женщины на новые отношения с мужчинами? Как мужчины к этому относятся и готовы ли они принять чужих детей? Все эти вопросы Мария Ионова-Грибина исследует в своей портретной серии “Отцы”. Проект несет в себе элемент перформанса: автор приглашает на съемку бездетных мужчин (бездетность и совершеннолетие — единственные требования к моделям), но не сообщает им тему и предполагаемые обстоятельства съемки. Согласившегося добровольца художница знакомит со своими детьми и предлагает представить, что теперь это его дети. Чем бы он мог с ними заняться? Помочь с уроками или поиграть? Вместе приготовить обед или починить самокат? Фотограф исследует сознательное и бессознательное поведение мужчины перед камерой: не откажется ли он от съемки, будет чувствовать себя свободно или скованно, насколько язык его тела отразит его психологическое состояние.
2014

“Fath­ers” is a visual per­form­ance by Rus­sian artist Maria Ionova-Gribina that explores how Rus­sian men identify them­selves through par­ent­ing. Child­less young men are invited to be pho­to­graphed without being informed about the theme. They are intro­duced to Maria’s chil­dren and asked how they would spend time with them as if they were their par­ent and to share their thoughts on fatherhood.
The idea came to Maria when her fel­low pho­to­grapher asked her to take his pic­ture for a self por­traits pro­ject. He asked Maria to make the pic­ture as per­sonal as pos­sible. Por­trait also had to reflect them both as artists. For Maria con­tem­por­ary por­trait is a lot about invest­ig­a­tion. It has to answer or rather raise some ques­tions. After think­ing about it for a while, she has decided to assign him a role of the father of her chil­dren. That’s how the pro­ject began. “We do know much more about mother-child rela­tions than we do about fath­ers”, Maria says ‚“how they inter­act with chil­dren, how that affects child­hood devel­op­ment and how it reflects on both men and chil­dren”. Research on fath­ers is a fas­cin­at­ing field of study, which cur­rently tends to raise far more ques­tions than it answers, but while couples share many of the con­cerns about hav­ing chil­dren men have their own dis­tinct worries.
Today, poten­tial fath­ers who are scared of com­mit­ment are the attrib­ute of mod­ern west­ern soci­ety. “Rus­sian men are more imma­ture than European men, for example”, Maria says. Stat­ist­ics do show that the aver­age mar­riage age in Rus­sia has increased by 3 years since 90’s. But is it because it takes more time for a man to grow into par­ent­ing or has Rus­sian insti­tute of mar­riage trans­formed into “west­ern model” with higher aver­age mar­riage age and less pre­ma­ture mar­riages? Maria let’s a viewer decide by accom­pa­ny­ing the images with quotes of her subjects.
The resume she makes for her­self is that noth­ing is per­man­ent; she is abso­lutely sure that men who are scared of the idea of a child today could become great fath­ers in the future. «It’s also so much about love, the major­ity of men I pho­to­graphed said they were ready to marry a woman with kids from pre­vi­ous mar­riage if they were in love».
For the record, though divorced, Maria is not cur­rently look­ing for a father for Luka and Fiodor.
2014





Kostya with Fiodor




Men’s thoughts on raising children: "Your attitude shifts as you age. When young, you’re like, “never!” But the older you get, the more you see yourself as a dad. "





Vic with children




Men’s thoughts on raising children:“There is considerable pressure from a society where family and children are considered an essential value; and there’s more pressure the older you get.”





Artiom with children




Men’s thoughts on raising children:“Before taking on the responsibility of rearing someone, people should first rear themselves.”





Sasha with Luka




Men’s thoughts on raising children: “It’s crucial that kids don’t invade my personal space and my comfort zone. I like peace and quiet.”





Kamil with children




Men’s thoughts on raising children: “A future father has to achieve much in terms of personal development. Raising a child is a challenging and responsible job.”





Misha with children




Men’s thoughts on raising children: “I realize that if a kid comes along I’ll have to adapt my life to his or her needs. I see this as a drawback, and I haven’t yet identified any advantages.”





Nikita and Fiodor




Men’s thoughts on raising children: “The birth of a child is an experiment with numerous variables.”





Liosha with children




Men’s thoughts on raising children: “It’s better to have kids before you achieve anything. You just won’t have time for them later.”





Vania with children




Men’s thoughts on raising children: “I think all a future father needs to attain is a sense of security.”





Gesha with children




Men’s thoughts on raising children: “In the end it’s the woman who makes the decision.”





Misha with children




Men’s thoughts on raising children: “Kids throw tantrums, make noise, and otherwise deprive you of your right for a peaceful life.”





Andrey with children




Men’s thoughts on raising children: “Small children scare me. I don’t know what to do with them.”





Gleb with children




Men’s thoughts on raising children: “A child is the pinnacle of my love towards his mother, the pinnacle of my life experience and worldview.”





Vlad with children




Men’s thoughts on raising children: “The older a man gets, the more he thinks about kids – becoming aware, planning, making sense of it all.”