The nice thing about a cliché is that nobody really knows precisely what it’s about but everyone knows what it means. “Kalinka” is the sweetly reduced form of the Kalina berry, but, of course, it’s also the 1860 song to which we can all sing along: “Kalinka, kalinka, kalinka moya!” It’s a song that evokes images of Russia’s folklore, its music and even what we might call its soul. A cliché is never real, but can be true if it helps to focus our thoughts: this might be a notion we’d like to distance ourselves from but it’s also one we can play with. Miranda Konstantinidou took the second option. “Kalinka” is Russia, or at least what we think it is, and it takes that thought to the limit. We see old Russian cloths, brocades and carpets. We see stars that might be emblems from the Soviet period but also moving stars like those in fireworks. Definite, classical arrangements are the result, stitched onto high-quality velvet and enhanced only with small crystals that subtly support the delicate patterns.The nuanced coloring of the velvet creates an unconventional, mysterious world of color that transports us to a distant realm. It creates a splendor of form and color that draws us in and intensive perceptions that we can play with: most “Kalinka” pieces can be worn with either side showing.