Kristaps Epners

Kristaps Epners (1976, Riga) is a Latvian artist and graphic designer. He studied at the Visual Communication Department of the Latvian Academy of Arts. Since his first video installations were shown at exhibitions, Epners has positioned himself as an artist interested in things rarely explored in art, like self-discipline, daily routine, and commitment. Epners constructs generalizations through detailed, focused observation, where every tiny element or fragment of the process plays a certain role in the general structure of the work. Epners was nominated for the Purvītis Prize in 2017 and 2019; his work has been featured at the Latvian National Museum of Art, at (AV17) Gallery Vilnius, at the Tallinn Art Hall, at Den Frie Centre of Contemporary Art in Copenhagen, at the Ethnographic Museum in Gdansk, at the Akureyri Art Museum Iceland and in other venues.

Video, 2022

Maslova, an Old Believers' house of prayer in Latgale, has been miraculously preserved with its onion-shaped dome – a luxury that Old Orthodox sacred buildings were not usually distinguished for, since they were hidden. Bells were forbidden, and a rail was rung to call the congregation together. Maslova, whose toponym contains the word “butter” and the ghost of a prosperous place, is far from all political centers. In the 17th century, opposed to unification with the Greek rite, the Old Believers broke away from the official church and moved to remote parts of the Russian Empire. They did not go with open resistance, but with a kind of internal emigration. A part of them did not participate at all in the day-to-day world but maintained the traditional way of worship and remained secluded. It’s been said that Sanskrit chants were heard in the Dagda area. In 1995, the Maslova house of prayer was left without a congregation. The house no longer has icons, but the paper flowers and pads for prayers have been preserved. There is a sense of familiarity in the room. We can hear the voice of Varvara Dorofeevna.