Text by Marc Raymond Wilkins:
While growing up in Switzerland, my mother taught me to feel guilt and shame about my sexuality. For her, sex was a monster to be kept locked away. In Switzerland I also met Alina Kopytsa, inside LX 2291, waiting for our take-off to fly from Zurich to Kyiv. A Ukrainian artist who celebrates freedom and transformation in her work, developing her practice in a country of rocky mountains and ancient rules. I had never met her before, but after she shared her works with me on this trip, I wanted her show at THE NAKED ROOM.
In Alina’s oeuvre, we find ourselves in a world of absolute freedom, sex positivity, and playfulness. We are welcomed by the absence of shame, guilt, and gender
restrictions. Alina is not using a provocative, tense voice, but shares her observations in a self-evident, trustful, and intriguing way. She is inviting us to join the games.
Pure intimacy, without any privacy. But it does not make the observer feel embarrassed, shy, or voyeuristic. It is rather warm, natural, and embracing. She is sharing her very own adult version of the alphabet in the form of a video, and turns her favorite memories of kinky adventures with her partner, the artist Coco Schwarz, into delicate lace doilies. But she does not shy away from also sharing some of the most painful moments of her life with us, such as the silicon chair, in the center of this exhibition, introducing how she felt when she was used for sex she did not want.
Alina is not a dreamer -her work is based on real experiences. So authentic that not only her stories are real, but also the material she is working with: The underwear of her
ex-husband’s girlfriend, bedsheets of sex workers, the suit of an unknown man she found on the streets in Zurich, or pieces of her own private clothing.
Just like Alina is opening seams of used textiles to transform them into a new life, she is opening all borders, restrictions, and taboos with cotton, colors, threads, sometimes silicon, aquarelle, and wool.
Metamorphosis is Alina’s obsession, and so she transforms whatever she can get her hands on. Starting with the fabrics belonging to her mother, transforming them into textile stories, an old chair into a silicon emotion, or used bedsheets into oversized embroidered cartoons.
By transforming materials, genders, and herself, she is encouraging us to let go of all restrictions holding us back: What do I desire? Who would you like to be? But always with consent: PLAY. PAUSE. STOP.