Born in 1964 in Shymkent, Kazakhstan, Erbossyn Meldibekov graduated from the Institute of Theatre and Fine Arts in Almaty, where he currently lives and works. His practice is informed by the ‘collapse of culture’ in post-Soviet Central Asia; namely, in his native Kazakhstan, where political and social disarray exists, and rivalling political and commercial tribes clash over the distribution of power and wealth.
The artist also examines the collapse of civility within a post-9/11 environment. He references the ongoing conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq, and draws on Central Asia’s epic historical past, including conquests that have accumulated a sea of ‘heroic’ monuments throughout the region.
Meldibekov deploys his ideas via a range of diverse mediums, such as video, performance, architecture and installation, which offer viewers absurd, heroic and humorous visual interpretations of human interplay.
He has exhibited internationally, with recent solo shows including Centauromachy (2007), Soros Center for Contemporary Art, Almaty, Kazakhstan; Hyper Muslim (2006), Marat Guelman Gallery, Moscow, Russia; and Pastan (2006), Galleria Nina Lumer, Milan, Italy; as well as recent group shows including Time of the Storytellers (2007), Kiasma, Museum of Contemporary Art, Helsinki, Finland; 2nd Moscow Biennale, Moscow, Russia; and Thaw, or In the Middle of the Road (2007), Russian Museum, Saint Petersburg, Russia, among other shows at the 51st Venice Biennial inaugural Central Asian Pavilion, Venice, Italy; Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin, Germany; and KW Institute of Contemporary Art, Berlin, Germany.