2007-10-20 - Exhibition Sots-Art La Maison Rouge, Paris

Starting from the title of the performance I'm referring to Vladimir Majakovskii’s known political project "Windows of ROST" / Okna Rosta, a series of everyday propaganda slogans placed inside the widows of a town, noticeable for the pedestrians on their average way somewhere and back while the day. In both satirical and threatening - towards the previous political regime – manner the revolutionary personages have been featuring with weapons, appearing brave and severe. 
Thinking of what might be a political project in Russia looking like nowadays, I appeal the tradition of revolutionary art in Russia in the 1920es.

Socialist realism had criticized the bourgeois and capitalist ideals and aesthetics, when became the official media of the new Soviet ideology, whereas Sots-Art is criticizing, in its turn, the ideology of socialism. The break-up of USSR had caused the disappearance of so-called Sots-Art, and the political art today stood again the position of criticism towards the new (capitalist) authority and bourgeoisie.

Performance description:

Inside the window a red slogan "Long live the new Russia!" is placed. I appear from the window being masked as a sniper. With a rifle in my hands I aim at the public around, choosing different people as a target for a shot that, however, I never go for.
A hymn of Russia sounds, causing a proud and ceremonial atmosphere.
While acting, I coordinate with someone I am speaking with via Skype, and whose voice is hearable, and who dictates on which the next object (sacrifice) of mine should be.
With this gesture of permanent control over the people attending, I somehow produce uneasy and troubled expectations, which, however, never gives out a result.   


© Elena Kovylina, 2003-2008