Nuclear Test Field. Inheritance without a testament, 2012, 71x107 cm, Inkjet Print
Kurchatov 22, 2012, 5-8 channel video Installation, HD, Surround Sound OMFO
BALAGAN!!! Contemporary Art from the Former Soviet Union and Other Mythical Place
An exhibition of 150 artworks by 75 artists from 14 countries in the former East
Curated by: David Elliott
Organized by: MOMENTUM for the NORDWIND Festival 2015
In Russia, BALAGAN!!! is a popular exclamation that describes, with celebratory gusto, a farce, a fine mess, the most unholy of cock-ups—but it is also a major international exhibition of contemporary art from the former USSR and Eastern Bloc that reveals a world in which chaos and misrule, along with the social comedy that results from it, are celebrated and scathingly exposed. Balagan originally meant “fairground.” By the 18th century, it had become associated with the activities of the people who worked in them: puppeteers, clowns, and jesters, who made fun of and satirized established order. From the beginning, however, artists have realized the potential of balagan as an effective framework for revealing the truth.
Today, the revolutionary politics of laughter, as well as the cathartic release it promises, are engendered by a sense of outrage at cruelty, inhumanity and the abuse of human rights. But balagan is not only modern: ever since time began, chaos has been ever-present. This exhibition is about how some artists choose to depict the chaos of our times critically, challenging its power through humor, parody and the power of art itself.
AES + F (Russia), Afrika (Sergey Bugaev) (Russia), Vyacheslav Akhunov (Uzbekistan), Shaarbek Amankul (Kyrgyzstan), Evgeny Antufiev (Russia), Lutz Becker (UK / Germany), Blue Noses Group (Russia), Sergey Bratkov (Ukraine), Yvon Chabrowski (Germany), Olga Chernysheva (Russia), Valery Chtak (Russia), Chto Delat? (Russia), Vladimir Dubossarsky (Russia), Andrej Dubravsky (Slovakia), Natalia Dyu (Kazakhstan), Sasha Frolova (Russia), Ivan Gorshkov (Russia), Georgy Guryanov (Russia), Dmitry Gutov (Russia), Sitara Ibrahimova (Azerbaijan), Nikita Kadan (Ukraine), Aleksey Kallima (Russia), Polina Kanis (Russia), Krištof Kintera (Czech Republic), Francizka Klotz (Germany), Irina Korina (Russia), Egor Koshelev (Russia), Katarzyna Kozyra (Poland), Olya Kroytor (Russia), Gaisha Madanova (Kazakhstan), Vladislav Mamyshev-Monroe (Russia), Natalie Maximova (Russia), Yerbossyn Meldibekov (Kazakhstan), Almagul Menlibayeva (Kazakhstan), Boris Mikhailov (Ukraine), Ciprian Mureşan (Romania), Kriszta Nagy (Tereskova) (Hungary), Deimantas Narkevičius (Lithuania), Ioana Nemes (Romania), Pavel Pepperstein (Russia), Pirate TV (Russia), Sasha Pirogova (Russia), RECYCLE Group (Russia), Mykola Ridnyi (Ukraine), Arsen Savadov (Ukraine), Mariya Sharova / Dmitriy Okruzhnov (Russia), Slavs and Tatars (Eurasia), Haim Sokol (Russia), Leonid Tishkov (Russia), Aleksandr Ugay (Kazakhstan), Oleg Ustinov (Russia), Anastasia Vepreva (Russia), VMS Group (Russia), Stas Volyazlovsky (Ukraine), Viktor Vorobyev / Elena Vorobyeva (Kazakhstan), Vadim Zakharov (Russia), Sergey Zarva (Ukraine), ZIP Group (Russia), Artur Žmijewski (Poland), Constantin Zvezdochotov (Russia)
A 265-page illustrated catalog, designed by Barnbook, also telling the backstory of BALAGAN!!! in theatre and art, accompanies the exhibition. Details available on the MOMENTUM website.