Saturday, September 18, 2010

A BMR Survey in Chisinau, Moldova

Moldova’s Gross National Income is one of the lowest in Europe. The economic crevasse at the EU border is countered by wider railway lines and higher heels worn on women’s stilettos. While the financial situation is extremely uneven across the ex-soviet territory, the train lines and the bodily elevation of the female population are rather constant, responding to invisible biometrics.

The imperative of verticality, typical of the civilized world, is completed by the one of height. The skyscraper and the space race, from the Cold War period, are gradually replaced by the new high altitude standard: the heel pedestal competition.

In the public space in Chisinau, the totalitarian sound of heels is oftentimes the only feminine voice. It obscures through frequency and intensity the spoken discourse, the controversies, gossips or neighbourhood arguments. The groundlessness of the high heeled Moldavian women is visible both on the sidewalks and on the billboards. It seems to be a resistance movement in the flood of nationalist slogans aiming at luring the citizens closer to the ground, but paradoxically the same company is responsible for both campaigns.

BMR has chosen several locations in Chisinau to collect numeric data regarding the height of the heels, thus warning against a lacuna in the official statistics. The results of the survey will be displayed in place of origin, in the form of a graphic of the heel height variation in time. This will be shown both in the public space and in the state institutions situated in the immediacy of the studied area. BMR recognises an institutional disregard of the relevance of such data. In the spotlight are: The Romanian Embassy, The Stock Exchange, The National Commission for the Financial Market, The State University, The Center for Contemporary Art [KSA:K].

All the graphics will eventually be displayed in the proximity of the National Bureau of Statistics of Moldova. The Bureau of Statistics has refused collaboration with the Bureau of Melodramatic Research, therefore the presentation will take place in the public space.

See the results of the research here