During the three weeks participants worked on the curatorial methodologies that could be applied to museums like Oriental Art Museum and developed the projects
by Lesia Prokopenko
This inevitable presence of the human behind a museum object is the blind spot within a system of classified materials, hierarchical labour, constructed narratives of culture justifying power, as well as a legacy of respective conventions and automatisms pampered by state cultural institutions. Isn't this presence also what induces the lure of a thing, makes one crave it, preserve it, place it in a state between hiding and exposure in an attempt to rationalize the admiration, get hold of relentlessly escaping memories, intercept these signals, and direct these voices? Lulled and gilded to build a myth about distant frontiers of a non-existent empire, things play their part as alienated illustrations of tamed lands, securely pinned under glass vitrines, locked inside a treasure-box. An exhibit without a museum label, once caught, all of a sudden produces a needed backlash, calling to untwist and read the structure that failed to identify it, and summoning the stories behind the missing identification.
The backdrop of a carpet, silver belts and head decorations, a metal bowler made in 1724 in the East Armenia, two festive dresses, a blue water jug, vessels for milk made of green and turquoise glazed clay, a fabric pouch with gold threads, an agaman — a bag for salt from Voskepar, a clay vessel for salt, "khurdzhin" textile bags made by Yelena Barsegian of Noyemberyan district in the 1910's. The name says nothing to an observer, but serves, along with the indicated years of birth and death (1881–1917), as a rare recognition of individual human presence behind an exhibit. This inevitable presence is the blind spot within a system of classified materials, hierarchical labour, constructed narratives of culture justifying power, as well as a legacy of respective conventions and automatisms pampered by state cultural institutions. Isn't this presence also what induces the lure of a thing, makes one crave it, preserve it, place it in a state between hiding and exposure in an attempt to rationalize the admiration, get hold of relentlessly escaping memories, intercept these signals, and direct these voices? Lulled and gilded to build a myth about distant frontiers of a non-existent empire, things play their part as alienated illustrations of tamed lands, securely pinned under glass, locked inside a treasure-box.
On the very left of the vitrine hosting artifacts from Armenia I notice a finely embroidered piece of fabric. It is different from vividly-coloured textiles around it, utterly fragile next to metal jars and weapons filling the room of the Caucasus section in the Museum of Oriental Art. The Museum has fairly enough dropped an inaccurate component of "Art" from it's official name in Russian, and clings only to the "Orient" — an imaginary path for ethnography and archeology to follow remnants of political mythologies in blind distress. I can't deny that I've focused on the Caucasus section for very particular reasons. Each country of this geographical region (hosting over 50 ethnic groups) has a complex history, and dissimilar political courses, which has resulted in its being a frequent locus of tensions fueled by oil, religion, identity politics, and oligarchic relations — not a single case without interest from the Russian state. Since early childhood I remember countries of Caucasus being in the news. I remember reading about the fluctuating numbers of people killed this April in a clash between Azerbaijan and Armenia in Nagorno-Karabakh, or Artsakh, and watching reportage about people, accustomed to being refugees, fleeing villages once again. Entering the Caucasus room of the museum causes the biggest dissonance in me: the lands with troublesome history have been evened out and decoratively represented in one space by sporadically clustered things from "the old days" — Caucasus being, for Russia, possibly the most perverse (therefore, the truest) location of "the Orient". Viewed through the lens of the XIX century Romanticism, which is where the museum is rooted in, it is not merely 'the East' (even from a purely geographical perspective it is rather South-West) — it is precisely "the Orient", a close-but-distant place of exile, mystery, drama, and violence. Observing this room with a collection of metalware, pottery, and textiles, I feel like a bystander at the crime scene. What does it mean to put these objects on display of the Museum of Orient in the first place? What am I being shown, and what do I see?
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The embroidery I'm looking at has no label. Every single piece in the vitrine is classified and marked, providing an institutional justification for its presence that can be frozen and statically preserved for decades, unquestioned, — but this piece of textile appears either as an excess or an element of a certain mistake, a slight rupture in a script about Armenia offered by the museum, which I decide to get a grasp of. This makes me observe the embroidery closer, trying to guess its origin, imagine the flux of usage it could have been a part of, and what it was intended to signify in this vitrine. The surface of unbleached canvas is rough and crumpled, uneven spaces between loosely-woven threads make it semi-transparent. Two lines of light-green shiny stitch lock the perimeter of the rectangular cloth. Inside the frame there are pairs of plants with thick stems, ivory and dark-cream blossoms with drops of blue middles. Unlabelled, omitted both in the guided tour and in the audio guide, possibly skipped by the majority of observers, it is yet a tangible particle in the information flows: of an Armenian woman who embroidered the flowers, of those who touched the fabric, of those who passed it to the museum, of real Armenia, of imaginary Orient, of flickering museum infrastructure, connected to and accounted by the Ministry of Culture of Russian Federation.
I search the web bluntly for Armenian embroidery, intuitively looking for clues to lead me on. None of the samples I find are similar to the piece from the museum, so I assume it must have come not from a very typical milieu. Only a random picture from Ovanes Sharambeyan Folk Art Museum confirms the ethnic marker: it shows an abundance of better preserved embroidered fabrics using similar light green and pink palette, one of the pieces with a double-blossom pattern relatable to the unlabelled one. But there is no precise information otherwise, and the questions remain. I find a picture of three Armenian women working on one embroidery, and think of the niches they occupied, rites they lived through, marks they left within things they silently produced, ways they were represented. Late 19th — early 20th century, the time most of the objects inside the vitrine belong to, was the time of massacres, slavery, and migration. I find a photograph of women who participated in Fedayi, the guerilla units formed "in reaction to the mass murder of Armenians and the pillage of Armenian villages by criminals, tribal Kurdish forces, and Hamidian guards during the reign of Abdul Hamid II, known as the Hamidian massacres". A photograph of women at a rescue home after having been in slavery. A photograph of a woman with her face tattooed, "which indicates that she was 'owned' by someone as a forced wife and sex-slave during the years of the Armenian Genocide".
The website of the Armenian Genocide Museum-Institute provides the following history:
"The policy of genocide against the Armenian population of the Ottoman Empire started with the annihilation of the male population and subsequent deportation the rest of the people into the Syrian deserts. These deportations quickly turned into "death marches". Deportation caravans mostly consisted of old people, women and children. En route many of the women were kidnapped either by the Ottoman Turkish soldiers or Kurdish bands, or Bedouins killing any who tried to oppose them: tens of thousands women and children perished on the way to deserts, while others, in order to escape humiliation and violence, committed suicide.

The Armenian genocide resulted in the kidnapping of thousands of Armenian women from their families, usually during deportations or overnight stops. After the organized mass killings of the Armenian male population, during the first stage of state-orchestrated policy of extermination, the Ottoman governors implemented another pre-meditated phase of the genocidal policy: the destruction of the rest of Armenian population in the Ottoman Empire, this time targeting the elderly, women and children.

Some of those individuals who were kidnapped and integrated into Muslim family life, over time forgot about their Armenian ethnicity and even lost the ability to speak their native language. In order to save their own lives and the lives of their loved ones many Armenian women forcibly to adopted Islam. They eventually were married off to Muslim men and in keeping with local tribal customs, were marked with specific tattoos. Tattoos were extensively used as amulets in the Middle East and Islamic countries, with the wearers believing that the mark imbued them with magical powers. These tattoos were often in the form of dots or a small "x" and provided protection, strength or fertility. These new markings represented new belonging and a marked change in their life.

After the end of the First World War, many Armenian organizations and foreign missioners helped rescue Armenian women and children from their captors. These rescue missions turned into large-scale operations, rife with danger. Particularly, Karen Yeppe, a Danish missionary who, with the assistance of some Arab tribe leaders, up until 1928, rescued approximately 2000 Armenian women and children from Muslim captivity. She helped establish special rescue homes in several locations which helped put an end to the tragic and painful ordeal many Armenian women had suffered.

Many volunteers paid dearly with their lives for being involved in these rescue operations and many Armenian women felt victim during their escape attempts.

The kidnapping of Armenian children and women and their subsequent rescue efforts outlines one of the most tragic and dramatic episodes of the genocidal policy implemented by the Ottoman Turkish government against Armenian population in the beginning of the 20th century."

The following day I get a chance to flip through archival photographs of exhibits from the section of art from Armenia, including early Christian miniatures, solemn 19th century portraits, painting and sculpture from the Soviet years, well-known works by Martiros Saryan. In particular, I'm looking for ways women would be represented. There are no female artists, but there are reflections of a trending gaze. In the midst of the faded cards I stumble upon the works by Vardges Surenyants, strongly resembling the style of Pre-Raphaelites. He paints massacre scenes, covered up women leaving a church, women as mythic royals, sexualized exotic women. His painting of Salome made in 1907–1912 bears a striking resemblance with a photograph of an Armenian teenage girl who was forced into prostitution in 1915 in Mardin (Turkey), found among the pictures of tattooed women. The distance between these two images is possibly similar to the distance between a story told by the museum about a thing and the presence of other realities within it, desirable and painful, therefore classified and decorated. A woman who embroidered the piece is a ghost, textiles produced by similar invisible hands veil and unveil her, serve as smoke-and-mirrors to reveal a hologram of certain time and space, like a nude in another painting by Surenyants. It's easy to glide through this hologram — offered as a potency by any displayed thing — staying within a grid of the museum game, but the game can be read only by playing it too.
On July 28 I go back to the vitrine in order to receive the information about the embroidery. I approach the only person present in the room — the guard — in order to lead myself to a reliable source.

Guard 1:
I have no information on the objects. You could ask the tour guide, but they are all gone now. You can ask the administrator on the ground floor. But please don't tell the administrator that I directed you to them.

You may get the information about an object by calling the department. There is a phone on the wall, and the list of numbers next to it. Probably there is someone in the office.

Young girl on the phone:
I'm the child of the employee. Please call when mom is back. Maybe in 5 minutes?

Administrator, overhearing:
Back in 5 minutes? I wouldn't be so sure that she is going to be back at all now.

Department Employee:
Are you saying the explication is missing? The label? The label might be missing in this vitrine because they are being replaced at the moment. Did you say it was Armenia or Azerbaijan? I can't provide you with any information. How long are you going to stay in Moscow? Well, you may talk to Roslavtseva. Roslavtseva's name is Lidia Igorevna. Call her on Tuesday, she is on sick leave and will be back.

On July 29 I check if there is anything about the embroidery on the audioguide. In the Caucasian section it presents only information about metal jars and a carpet, representing all the carpets of the area, the use of which "was mentioned by Xenophon and Herodotus". The most specific information on textiles on the audioguide is the "multitude of complex patterns" and them being "genuinely practical". However, I run into another guard, different from yesterday, and decide to double-check my guesses about the availability of information.

Guard 2:
Are you sure there is no label? No text?

(She approaches the vitrine, in disbelief, looking at the display in utter confusion, processing what she sees as if she was observing a Martian landscape for the first time)

This is a tablecloth or napkin, with a repeated ornament. Possibly, they did not consider it important enough to be labeled. One may find unlabelled objects in the vitrines.

Are you sure there is no information in the general text on the wall?

On August 2 my meeting with Ms Roslavtseva is being rescheduled for another day. I walk around the room once more, lucky to overhear a visitor talking to his teenage son: "Here are your ancestors, the avars. Take a picture of this spoon, let's show it to your grandmother in Dagestan, and ask if she is able to find any differences". I think about the expectations of people who come to see things in the museum: things, presumably, in their glory.

On August 3 I finally meet Lidia Roslavtseva. She says she is not the one who composed the vitrine, so she doesn't know why the label could be missing. She also confirms my guesses about the timeframe the embroidered towel was produced in, late 19th — early 20th century, and it's being a non-typical Armenian textile. The piece might be coming from Crimean Armenians (violently driven out of Crimea in 1944) or Turkish Armenians who fled to Crimea escaping the genocide, which leads me back to the histories I've started tracing. Embroideries were completed in Crimean monasteries or brought to the church centers, in particular in Yalta and Feodosia, by secular women. The towel, being not the fanciest artifact, was most probably presented to the museum by someone who inherited it from their family. It could have been obtained from a different museum during the exchanges that took place in the 1920-40's. But originally it does come from a church centre in Crimea. "Most probably," says Roslavtseva. "I'm not the one who completed the exposition," she finds necessary to add again.
Behind Object
by Jo Ying Peng and Anna Litovskikh
The project "Behind Object" tries to look at how the museum delivers the interpretation through displaying objects to the general audience in ways of visual perception. And how to look at the institutional process through interpreting the nature of objects to depict its cultural image and value for museum's collection display. The unseen roles behind the cultural context of objects in institutions played a parallel role to most of the museum curators in collating and archiving knowledge. With the unmarked distance through representation, this project will go through interviewing museum staff from different departments, including curator, collection keeper, archaeologist and researcher to study their relationship with the objects, to find out more about hidden narratives "behind" the institutional presentation. It attempts to access the knowledge that objects contain through careful and attentive gaze of someone closely dealing with it, thus, inevitably building a special relationship. Throughout the process of open research "Behind Object" tries to reveal the hidden dialogue behind the museum and "its" collection.

What would Eagle say?
What would Eagle do?

Let's talk Eagle

What if there is no Eagle

But if there is an Eagle,
Does she see herself as an object or a thing?

Does she look behind?

Conversation of the Eagle and the Others

Eagle says: I am beyond what you think.
Researcher says: Some highly might.
Eagle says: I have to say that I am a verb. I am 'To perform' and 'To act'.
Curator says: This piece is one of the highlight of the museum collection and also one of the most valuable object from it.
Eagle says: I am an adjective. I am 'Fabulous'.
Archaeologist says: The root is existence, root of life. And the Eagle is its keeper.
Eagle says: I am a conjunction. I am 'Relationship'.
Keeper says: Of course, she represents her own time, like paintings of some styles represent theirs.
Eagle says: I am a pronoun. I am 'Symbol'.
Keeper says: She doesn't really give me that much aesthetic pleasure, but I understand her importance.
Archaeologist says: I am always admiring and marvelling at the Eagle, every feather is created and planted separately, so much work put into it, She is a masterpiece.
Eagle says: I am a noun. I am a subject term. I am 'Glory'.
Researcher says: The spread of the wings shows power, authority, protection of all earthly.
Eagle says: I am a noun. I am an object term. I am 'Gift'.
Curator says: I believe that the Eagle has a very interesting story behind it and it might bear lots of things.
Eagle says: I am a verb living in the past tense. I am 'Written'.
Archaeologist says: But what makes me connect to the piece, to think about existence, is not the Eagle, it's the root.
Eagle says: I am the first person. I am 'Self'.
Researcher says: There is a contrast of top and bottom - top is white, aspiring to go up, bottom is ground, rooted.
Keeper says: For a long time she was kept in the storage, in oblivion.
Eagle says: I am a collective noun. I am 'Art'.
Keeper says: The restaurateurs found out that each feather (carved from ivory) could be taken out of the Eagle body, so then they plucked her like a chicken.
Researcher says: I feel her freedom and her patronage.
Eagle says: I am a kidnaped noun. I am 'Fetish'.
Meanwhile, I am also a nomad none. I am 'Legend'.
Curator says: It's difficult to have personal feelings for the Eagle, as she's just like a national flag. For me she's like a national symbol.

Eagle says: I am an irreplaceable subject term. I am 'Eagle'.
Visuality and Thingness of Trans-Ethnography in the Context of Unrealised Future of the Past
by Liva Dudareva, Denis Maksimov,
and Rana Ozturk
Unless the Soviet Union had not been formed in 1922 on the basis of national self-identification of the ethnicities populating its territories, the country could have made the case for trans-ethnographic appropriation of cultural artifacts. What does it mean for the narratives of connections between material objects as evidence of history, aesthetics and alternative story-telling? How do these objects manifest themselves in the context of advancing globalization? The artistic investigation of Liva Dudareva (METASITU), Denis Maksimov (Avenir Institute) and Rana Ozturk presents an analysis of potentialities within the alternative cartography of Eurasia. Material, visual, representational, etc. fluidity manifested in migration, transition and conversion of thingness in the objects of ethnographic museums and beyond them is approached from a speculative perspective of trans-historicity in the present and in possible futures. This project also refers to the cultural geographer Doreen Massey's idea that "identities/entities, the relations between them, and the spatiality which is part of them, are all co-constitutive" and cannot be based on distinctiveness of places, cultures and nations. The Moscow Museum of Oriental Art is approached as an object in itself for post-disciplinary analysis of contemporary cultural discourse pastiche. Critical demystification of political and cultural identity through the objects is achieved by means of deconstruction of their "secondary" layers of thingness.
Thoughts on Queering the Ethnographic
by Eliel Jones

Grindr, a cruising app mostly used by gay men to find sex, has slowly made its way into a space of cultural acceptance. Even amongst straight men and women the app seems to have gained popularity under an unwritten consensus that acknowledges a desire and need for casual sex. What was once a subcultural underdog is now a widely referenced site. But what is only worse that its inclusion into heteronormative terms and conditions is its use by a heterosexual community. In countries where gay rights are precarious or inexistent and queer communities are undesired, gay men using Grindr are falling into a new kind of hate crime that targets and exploits casual encounters as a tool for aggression. Men are being tricked into meetings that result in their beatings, violence often followed by a full strip down of belongings and cash; a humiliating, painful and traumatic experience that often goes unreported because of shame, fear of being 'outed' or because it is simply not possible to do so. Another trend that perhaps seems less dangerous, but that is without a doubt equally damaging, is the use of the app as a tool to wander into the secret life of the gay man. A recent example took place at this year's Rio Olympics. White, male, straight, British journalist Nico Hines created himself a Grindr profile and roamed the Olympic park cruising for gay Olympians online, only to later report about his findings, describing his cyber-encounters as if they were proud trophies; the prizes of a hard day's work in the land of the bent. The feature drew outrage mostly from inside the gay community. We read his text as a violation and direct aggression on each male body that he had hoped to showcase, namely gay Olympians who hadn't come out in public, or at all. But what was even more concerning than this demagogical intent was Hines use of language as that of an outsider attempting to demystify a community of users, others; an exercise that served to observe and expose, to exoticise and alienate.
Extract from Thoughts on Queering the Ethnographic, Eliel Jones
LPMC (Local Practices with Multiple Connections)
by Kathleen Reinhardt, Eszter Szakacs, Mi You
Our proposal of a methodology revolves around the question of how to re-embody history and historical material residues. We take the artworks and artifacts at the State Museum of Oriental Art in Moscow as a starting point and trace the ecology of their emergence, for which we apply a generic interpretative model of what we call "local practices with multiple connections." More specifically, we look at Nicholas and Helena Roerich's engagement with a so-called "spiritual geopolitics" and its (missed) political potentials in terms of building trans-/international connections in their time. Through taking the model of interpreting the multiple practices of the Roerichs as a point of departure (which is to say, we do not locate the Roerich family as a source of inspiration), we analyze the evolution/mutation/co-option of such social-political movements as transnationalism/internationalism, as well as the occult and forms of organized networks in other time periods. This methodology may be materialized in the form of study programs, workshops, conferences, as well as exhibitions and performances.

The diagram instantiates this methodology of the tracing of forms and meanings: in this case, the trans-/international connections and organized networks—that is LPMC—through three main strata and time periods, the 1920s-1930s, the 1960s-1970s, and our present time. The diagram thus illustrates the multiple threads and possible connecting points between the different references without centralization, oppositions, or fixed correlations.
Stories from the State Museum of Oriental Art
by Olga Deryugina and Katya Borodina
The focus of our interest was the history of the Museum of Oriental Art – in particular, its methodology, how the items for the collection were obtained and treated, what were the exhibition politics. We researched documents about the Museum, starting from its foundation until 1990. It was interesting to find that the aims and methods of the Museum's work have seemingly not changed significantly during the period of about 70 years but of course, they were deeply influenced by the country's political course. However, in the current display we can see no traces of the socialist framing e.g. its immense fixation on the subject of labour conditions and social equality. And there are no traces of the cabinets of Revolutionary movements of the Eastern people which existed in the Soviet times. Instead, the current exposition provides a nearly achronistic view; objects seem to be deprived of their functional, social and historical meaning in concession to purely aesthetic perception. Also the Museum's history remains largely hidden from visitors. As far as the current display employs the tendency to mystify the story of objects rather than explaining the socio-historical context of things, we decided to combine a selection of the most eloquent quotes from the Museum's documents with illustrations from children's books of the Soviet era. We can not unveil the elaborate mythology behind the multiple historical and ethnic layers that coincide in this collection, but at least we can connect the local mythology the Museum creates with a general mythology of the country which imposed a certain influence on the visual and structural language of the institution.
Untold stories
by Anna Kozlovskaya
Presented in the museum display are artifacts which are legitimated by their "value". But what kind of value is it? The museum collection started with artifacts that were collected by travelers from different countries. In the museum the objects are now categorized by their regional provenance just like it was 30 years ago. Short descriptions of the artifacts, the "design of the vitrines flooded with artifacts – this setup doesn't describe a cultural transformation, human beings or stories, but represent a total narrative without any private or historical context.

I focus on one typical showcase with plates from Central Asia dating from the end of 19th and beginning of 20th and in my research I try to understand the museum's logic of presenting things and try to find a possible value of an object, that could be important if one finds some connections with the stories that are behind the object. Talking with museum staff, reflecting on complexities of communication, I did some a research in some archival materials and historical context I try to compare the official narrative with the stories that could be told, but they are hidden.

The "simple" plate

The simple plate from Central Asia dating by the end of 19th – and beginning of 20th is presented in the showcase of the Museum of East with a short label of a very formal information – name, date and region of origin. Is it beautiful? Maybe… Does it present a typical life in Central Asia? Maybe… But what kind of story could the "simple" plate tell us if we look through the history of its place of origin and the persons who owned it? This plate was belonged to a military engineer B.N. Castalskiy and in 1934 was presented or sold to the Museum. This plate was brought not by an expert or scientist and might be an ordinary souvenir. A souvenir that was probably made especially for tourists. But it is presented in the Museum as a typical part of human behavior in Central Asia. Is it really so? Tracing the history of engineer B.N.Castalsky I found the information of the book, he wrote, which was about the issues of irrigation system in Uzbekistan (the part of Central Asia). In the early 20th century the Soviet Union transformed some republic of Central Asia in a huge cotton plantation. It was one of the most ambitious engineering projects in History – there were built thousands of kilometers of irrigation canals and they were made almost manually. A lot of people were directed to Central Asia to build a system of irrigation and pick cotton. In the archive of the Museum I found some propaganda posters.
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Since that time the image of the cotton became the main symbol of Central Asia. There were build a state factory producing dishes with the new drawing – cotton instead of vegetal pattern. And manual ceramic production had been prohibited for a long time.

Due to the huge irrigation facilities in the 80-s of 20th water in the Aral Sea – the main waterway of the region – rapidly disappeared and it became obvious an ecocatastrophe.
Nowadays the cotton trade with Central Asia is under a ban by EU community because of using forced labor (children and the civil servants are forced to pick up a cotton). The cotton changed the history of the region forever. Today you can buy the simple plate with a similar pattern as you can see in the Museum as a souvenir while travelling to Central Asia or as a plate for use in a common food market in Moscow.
So is this "simple" plate as simple as the Museum shows us?
The Rematerialization of the Art Object
by Evgenia Novgorodova
Re-materialization of the object is old news in the art world. The conceptual art movement, described by Lucy Lippard in "Six Years: The Dematerialization of the Art Object from 1966 to 1972", "emphasizes the thinking process almost exclusively" and "may result in the object becoming wholly obsolete." However, the object strikes back and privileges the new materiality over its content. Symptomatically, digital art works seek a means of existence in the tangible world, flirting with the limits between digital and traditional cultures. The process of re-materialization turns to be the embodiment of remix culture. In this context an ethnographic museum where the objects and artifacts continuing an imperative governing in silence becomes a ground for exploring contemporary modes of production, appropriation and reproduction.

This project is an experiment of approaching one of the marginalized objects from the Northern Asia Art collection of Moscow Oriental Art Museum within the narratives of authenticity, ownership and the importance of the "hand" of the artist. Initially being a certain hybrid of craft and art Yakutian silver jewelry "ilin kebeeser" is re-materializing in two artists' talks to be back into a public space of the museum where people could look at it, hear it, and talk about it.

The RemaTeRializaTion of The aRT objecT


Ksenia Kudrina – artist
Alexander Manzhuriev – artist
Evgenia Novgorodova – curator
Oriental Art Museum – location
v-a-c foundation – organizer
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In dialogue with
Lucy Lippard

Six years: the dematerialization of the art object from 1966 to 1972; a cross-reference book of information on some esthetic boundaries.

The studio is again becoming a study. Such a trend appears to be provoking a profound dematerialization of art, especially of art as object, and if it continues to prevail, it may result in the object's becoming wholly obsolete.
Joseph Schillinger
The mathematical basis of the arts
biological stage of mimicry
a magic, ritual-religious art
art for art's sake
experimental art, novel art
Scientific, post-aesthetic
"disintegration of art," the "abstraction and liberation of the idea"

2054 II
by Karen Vestergaard Andersen, Chiara Ianeselli, and Larion Lozovoy
For all happiness that has ever thrilled the heart; all greatness that has nearly destroyed us with its force; every broad, transforming thought ~ was once nothing but the pursing of lips, the raising of eyebrows, the shadows on a face: and this expression on the mouth, this line above the eyebrows, this darkness on a face ~ perhaps they were always there in exactly the same form, as a marking on an animal, as a crack in a rock, as a bruise on a piece of fruit.
Auguste Rodin, Reiner Maria Rilke, 1907

A bruise on a piece of fruit hides the cave of the worm that has grown its habitat inside that juicy planet since it came to life. Phidias' Zeus in Athens was shaped by an elephant, they all disappeared, to perhaps become legend.

Karen Vestergaard Andersen, Chiara Ianeselli, Larion Lozovoy have fallen in the void of a graceful flask of the State Oriental Art Museum of Moscow, and have been wondering in that space since then, accompanied by the melodious screeches of bullets that they could not avoid.
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