Nishni Novgorod’s automobil factory GAZ once produced a few cars with well-crafted interiors which were used for parades only. Those parade car’s most distinguishing feature however was the unique stick and handle in front of the rear bench. The handhold served the person standing in the car as stabilzer, thus underlining and strengthening the perfomance of the official person while waving or saluting the spectators. In contrast to conventional mass-production in industrial cities, the handhold itself was a special product, costum-made and a perfect ready-made. Bechtle’s work presents the stick – essential for smooth realization of the parade’s protagonists – as a sculptural object and creates a representational setting for this item. Therefore the video work is using advertisement strategies like slick 3-D animations and hence refers to familiar promotional images, only interrupted by a short clip. This intermission shows a child with a cat singing a famous russian lullaby while holding the handhold – knowing that nowadays a cat is able to create more attention than any parade by beeing click-/likeable online. Parade borrows a strategy which is particularly adopted in politics, trying to create a balance between attention and sedation.
Parade, exhibition view, Trekhgornaya Manufaktura, Moscow, 2015