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This project seeks to shed light on the censorship of art in Russia and its consequences. The deterioration depicted in these photographs mirrors the developmental atrophy forced upon the Russian art world through self-censorship caused by societal and governmental pressure. Over time, only traces of what was once a thriving creative community will be left as artists cease their work, emigrate, or are compelled into hollow aesthetics and patriotism.
The linkage of somber imagery from Russian villages to incidents of censorship of art in Russia creates a sense of conflict between what is shown and what is written to encourage the viewer to pay greater attention to the information given. Only a handful out of a wider range of cases could be described here; they embody a phenomenon that has slowly been suffocating any social, economic, and political critique out of art.
Exhibition: 'Spiritual Profanity'. Depicted Pussy Riot in the form of a religious icon. Offended the religious community's feelings. Entrance to exhibition blocked by activists, later closed entirely.
Interactive play: ‘Moscow Trials’. Play about exhibitions ‘Careful, Religion!’ and ‘Forbidden Art’ as well as Pussy Riot. Performance interrupted by Federal Migration Service and members of ‘Modern Cossacks’.
Exhibition: ‘Welcome to Sochi 2014’. Satirized Russia hosting the Winter Olympics. Considered Russophobic and defamatory. Exhibition closed. Curator, Marat Gelman, fired.
Exhibition: ‘The Sculptures We Do Not See’. Offended the religious community’s feelings. Destroyed by Russian-Orthodox activist group, ‘Gods Will’. Four sculptures by Vadim Sidur heavily damaged.
Opera: ‘Tannhäuser’. Depicted a religious icon and nude woman on stage together. Offended the religious community’s feelings. Production shut down. Theater director, Boris Mezdrich, fired.
Exhibition: ‘We Won’. Presented nonconformist view on Victory Day (9 May) in Russia. Raided by Russian Federal Security Service and police. Artists and gallery suspected of extremism. Exhibition closed.