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Insignificant alterations

© Pavel Pepperstein

© Pavel Pepperstein

Vienna, 2.10.2014—23.11.2014

exhibition is over

Krinzinger Projekte

Schottenfeldgasse 45, A-1070

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Curator: Olga Sviblova

Curator: Olga Sviblova


For mass-media

The exhibition Insignificant Alterations presents works of artists belonging to the Moscow Conceptualism circle: Nikita Alekseev, Andrey Monastyrsky, Collective Actions, Inspection Medical Hermeneutics, Yuri Leiderman, Pavel Pepperstein, Victor Skersis, and Andrey Filippov, as well as German Titov, one of the most brilliant followers of the Moscow Conceptualism traditions today.

The fundamentally contemplative Moscow Conceptual School emerged in the 1970s, during the socalled «stagnation years» in the Soviet Union. The artists belonging to the school cultivated a tradition of Russian laziness, which dates back to the famous Russian classical novel Oblomov (1859) by Ivan Goncharov. The main character of the novel, Ilya Oblomov, mostly lies in bed while reflecting and conceptually contemplating—in contrast to another leading character, Stolz, a German who actively tries to change the surrounding world. Oblomov symbolizes the sleeping Russia, which is perhaps not worth being awakened?

In one of the interviews Pavel Pepperstein mentions that he joined Moscow Conceptualism after becoming acquainted with Andrey Monastyrsky in the late 1970s. At the time, Monastyrsky mostly lay on a sofa with his back turned to the world. Nevertheless, he was open to communication. The Moscow Conceptualism circle has developed a contemplative tradition through fixation and reflection on specifically insignificant alterations. The above relates to «invisible» actions by the group Collective Actions that address the «members» only. As well as to the interactive object Finger by Monastyrsky that encourages viewers to make a minimal, socially insignificant effort. As well as to an installation by Inspection Medical Hermeneutics with a bed and books as main «characters» (Russian people traditionally read books in a reclined position). As well as to a video by Titov with barely noticeable three flags—white, red, and blue—flapping in a wasteland.

Nowadays, the role of significant alterations and global tremors is growing both worldwide and particularly in Russia. It forces the conceptual paradigm of «insignificant alterations» to be reapplied, being so deeply rooted in Russian mythology, literature, and social traditions.

Insignificant Alterations addresses not only the subject of this years edition of curated by "The century of the bed but also the long termed series Curators Collectors Collaborations, initiated by gallery Krinzinger. This program aims at engaging curators and collectors in co-realising exhibitions on the basis of the respective collections and in opening new perspectives on collecting policies. The exhibition was prepared by Multimedia Art Museum, Moscow. Olga Sviblova is the Founding Director of the Multimedia Art Museum, Moscow. Since 1988 she has been curating major international exhibitions, including the Russian Pavilion at the Venice Biennale in 2007 and 2009.