September 3, 4:00 pm
Evgeniya Abramova is an Independent researcher, sociologist and journalist
Admission is free of charge. The number of participants is limited. Please register in advance.
Curator: Gleb Napreenko, art critic, theorist and art historian, from January 2016 to March 2017 editor-in-chief of the online magazine Raznoglasie (Controversy).
What is art in today’s world? It is possible to answer this question with a paradox — art today is that which relates to non-art — that, which time and again redefines its own limits; which opposes the unequivocal regime of reading and acceptance of art and non-art; which casts doubt on guaranteed solutions and calls a halt to actions which seem obvious. Sounds too romantic? Or too reminiscent of the old modernistic concept of the avant-garde as that which transcends the barrier between life and art (the last notable outbreak of such ideas was the thinking in France in 1968)? In our lecture series On the Fringes of Art we will demonstrate that the boundaries of art are arranged so whimsically that to imagine the modern avant-garde purely as the practice of building life by means of art, with the breaking down of art’s barriers as a militaristic gesture of conquest, as some thinkers used to think, is now impossible. Art is located at the crossroads of many lines of force, and many contested territories, the disputes over which it is neither able nor willing to resolve. Our lecture series, while making no pretention at unachievable totality in this matter, will try to delineate a few such borderlands in order to show, among other things, the unobviousness of what we call art. And that very unobviousness is not peculiar to the modern world, but traces its roots way back into history: we can find it in a range of obsolete artistic and non-artistic practices, ways of life, political and economic programmes with whose vestiges and consequences we are still dealing today.