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We're a team of eight artists, curators and critics with a broader network of art professionals on the post-soviet, post-communist and diasporic spaces. With our ability to grasp, to describe and to invert the sensable, we might be your best collaborator.

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Mission

 

TransitoryWhite is an online platform for the connectivity of intersected discourses of local, regional, and global perspectives on art, design and activism. TransitoryWhite is about contemporary art from the blind spots (“white spots”) from Central Asia, Caucasus and Eastern Europe.
 
Despite the territories heterogeneous cultural, historical and religious diversity, the respective countries share a fundamental experience of a realised utopia, which lasted over more than 70 years. In the turbulent time of the 20th century, the political events taking place were differing from those in Europe, which also resulted in an original set of cultural and aesthetic questions. The uniqueness of these questions was underlined by the particular term “Post-Soviet” which was coined to describe the political, economic and artistic transition from the communist regime to the democratic states. While we don’t deny that the initial generalisation was making sense, we claim for the new discussions and discourses for the art from these regions which are not tied by the restrains of its brand. We would love to show video art, bio art, art on the edge of science, communal projects, feminist initiatives, new media performances and much more on our platform and give the possibility for discovering the transnational connections and influences of the artists from these countries. Apart from that, we aim to translate and to publish the new and old texts written by the local art historians, art theoreticians and curators, which are usually expelled from the contemporary art discourse.
 
Crucial to our investigation of those regions is furthermore, the representation of artists and theoreticians from any ethnic, religious, sexual and even political minorities as an opposition to the accumulating national discourse. We’re dedicated to exploring any transnational networks as well as limits of connection within and on the borders.
 
TransitoryWhite is the White Noise of the post-post-Soviet, a constant disturbance, a random signal, cacophony, turbulence, restlessness, which - contrary to the musical White Noise - is not constant, but is in fluctuation and transition.

Contributors

Alex Ulko

Antonina Stebur

People

Irina Konyukhova

Ira Konyukhova is an artist, writer, curator, feminist activist and the founder of TransitoryWhite. In her practice, she explores the connection between female sexuality, pop-resilience, death as well as colonial technological practices. As an artist, her works have been presented on various international festivals and exhibitions, including DocLisboa, Athens Biennale, Teneriffa Espacio del Arte, Exground Film Festival e.t. Her latest article on the early 2000s Russian lesbian stars T.a.T.u. And their influence on queer politics has been recently published by Pop-Zeitschrift by University Siegen. Ira was a grantee of BS Projects Artist-in-Residence scholarship Programm and lives and works in Berlin.

Lene Vollhardt

Lene Vollhardt-Wongrowska is an artist, filmmaker, triple Gemini, and speculative pragmatist based in Berlin and London. Through various media, her work undermines the classical juxtaposition between conceptuality and corporeality. Fascinated by the cultural signification of the female body as a processing site for transfer of value and valuation, she conceives shapeshifting, liquid counter-processes in alliance with people across various backgrounds – philosophers, human rights activists, intuits, sex workers, economists, and so on.
Vollhardt's interest in the implied aesthetic of political negotiation and its proprietary tactics of performative gaslighting is reflected in her works. She explores this in transposition with the embodiment of herself as an environment and remote viewing the weather. She has exhibited and screened at many institutions: LOOP Barcelona, Vitra Museum Basel with BlessBerlin, Athens Digital Arts Festival, European Days of Culture Karlsruhe, and Toronto Arthouse Film Festival. She has received the scholarship from the German National Foundation and the Art Foundation Baden-Wuerttemberg, and her works have received the Nikolaj Kunsthal Fokus Award (DK) and Hong Kong Arthouse Award (HK).

Pavel Metelitsyn

Pavel Metelitsyn is a software engineer and developer focusing on interactive data presentation, user interfaces and web technologies. He is driven by the idea of making the information more accessible through interactivity and gamification. Working together with creative agencies he implemented interactive multimedia stations for Neues Historisches Museum, Frankfurt/Main, made a kiosk app for a permanent exhibition at Deutsche Nationalbibliothek, Frankfurt/Main. Besides that, he works with a wide range of clients from FinTech Startups to national research institutions, helping them to collect, process and present the business information. Pavel holds an M.Sc. in Mathematics.

Willi Reinecke

Willi Reinecke is a film director, writer, and researcher on Lev Vygotsky's Psychology of Art at the Institute for East European Studies (Freie Universität Berlin). He is teaching at Szondi-Institute for Comparative Literature and Institute for East European Studies. He worked as assistant director of the documentary film "Familienleben" which premiered at Berlinale 2018. The film was nominated for German Documentary Film Award and was awarded prizes at Saratov Sufferings Festival (RU) and Neisse Filmfestival (GER). He's currently working on documentary films for Institute of Contemporary Art Yerevan and Deutsche Gesellschaft e.V.

Sascia Reibel

Sascia Reibel is a graphic and product designer. Her focus lays on printed matter, especially books and posters, with a strong dedication for typography. She engages in projects within the field of culture, art, and education. She studies communication design at the University of Art and Design Karlsruhe and has also studied in the design master program of the Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing, China. Her work has been honoured with several awards, including «Most Beautiful Swiss Books», «Most Beautiful Books from all over the world», «Bronze Nail, ADC», as well as the «Badge of Typographic Excellence, TDC New York.

Thibaut de Ruyter

Thibaut de Ruyter is a French curator and critic who lives and works in Berlin since 2001. In the last ten years, he has organized exhibitions at Kunstmuseum Bochum, Museum Kunstpalais Düsseldorf, Museum of Applied Arts in Frankfurt, HMKV in Dortmund, EIGEN + ART Lab and CTM in Berlin, Muzeum Sztuki in Łódź and CRP / in Douchy-les -Mines. One of his latest projects is a travelling exhibition co-curated with Inke Arns for the Goethe-Institut: The Frontier that calls into question the dividing line between Asia and Europe in the former Soviet states. Since 2017 this exhibition has been exhibited in St Petersburg, Moscow, Tashkent, Almaty, Krasnoyarsk (u.A.) and will open in Erevan in May 2019. His areas of interest range from new media to spiritualism to "exhibitions that are not exhibitions". Most of his projects are related to everyday, pop or underground culture. He has been the German correspondent for the French magazine artpress since 2003.

Lioudmila Voropai

Lioudmila Voropai is a curator, art critic and media artist. She studied philosophy at the Russian State University for the Humanities (RGGU) in Moscow and New Media Art at the Academy of Media Arts (KHM) in Cologne. Her curatorial and artistic projects are mainly focused on issues related to institutional critique and fake as an artistic strategy. As an art critic, she contributes to XZ Moscow Art Magazine, Art Issue, Logos and other periodicals. She is also a translator and editor of the Russian translations of Jürgen Habermas (Legitimation Crisis), Slavoj Zizek (Parallax View), Giorgio Agamben (State of Exception), Michael Walzer (The Company of Critics) among others. Lioudmila Voropai is an adjunct professor for Media Theory and Philosophy at Karlsruhe University of Arts and Design.

Ina Hildebrandt

Ina Hildebrandt is an art historian and cultural journalist. Born in Kazakhstan, she grew up as a so-called Russian-German in the south of Germany. After spending years of total assimilation she developed a strong interest in her cultural roots. Several long travels and stays took her to Easter-Europe over Russia to Central-Asia. Thereby she started to focus more on those regions also as art historian and journalist. She lives and works in Berlin. 

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This document was last updated on March 10, 2019

6th September 2019

It is more important to make films queerly than to make queer films

interview

12th July 2019

When there are no opputurnities, create your own Giardini

article

Asli Samadova

1st July 2019

Juggling Dinosaurs

article

The precariousness of motherhood in arts
Anna Kamay

24th June 2019

Interview with Elene Abashidze

interview

14th June 2019

Unfortunately, we cannot pay for your flight and accommodation

article

Thibaut de Ruyter

28th May 2019

Ich liebe dich!

article

Antonina Stebur

17th May 2019

Interview with Anna Vahrami

interview

23rd April 2019

Artist Portrait: Anastasia Akhvlediani

portrait

13th April 2019

Artist Portrait: Alisa Berger

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Thibaut de Ruyter

21st March 2019

Faig Ahmed

interview

Interview geführt von Ira Konyukhova und Pavel Metelitsyn

18th March 2019

There Is Sex After Soviet Union!

article

Irina Konyukhova

11th March 2019

Interview mit Samvel Saghatelian

interview

Geführt von Ira Konyukhova

8th March 2019

Artist Portrait: Salome Dumbadze

portrait

4th March 2019

Interview mit Chinara Majidova

interview

Geführt von Ira Konyukhova

26th February 2019

East Wind - Art in the Former Soviet Republics

article

Thibaut de Ruyter
Not An Exhibition, DK Rozi, 2018
Niichegodelat
Galerie Peresvetov Lane, Moskau. Cyber-nomadische Ankunft, 2019
Niichegodelat
Galerie Peresvetov Lane, Moskau. Cyber-nomadische Ankunft, 2019
Niichegodelat
Not An Exhibition, DK Rozi, 2018
Niichegodelat
Not An Exhibition, DK Rozi, 2018
Niichegodelat
"Arbeite mehr! Mehr ausruhen!" Auf dem Foto: Valentina Petrova. Eine Vortragsreihe über sowjetische Arbeiterplakate im Zeitalter des Spätkapitalismus.
Foto von Dina Zhuk

- Ich liebe dich!

- Oh, sag mir das mit einem Kopfstein in der Hand!

 

Populärer Slogan der 1968er Bewegung

 

 

Im Mai 1968 ging Gilles Karon mit einem einzigen Ziel auf die Straßen von Paris, um die Proteste fotografisch festzuhalten. Heute, wenn man durch diese Fotos schaut, bleibt das Auge immer wieder an der gleichen Figur hängen: die Figur eines jungen Mannes, der einen Kopfstein wirft. Die Bewegung des Körpers auf dem Foto sieht so frei und skulptural aus, dass nur der Faule diese Komposition nicht mit der berühmten antiken Statue des Diskuswerfers vergleicht. Daher stammt wahrscheinlich der Wunsch, das Bild eines Mannes, der einen Kopfstein wirft, als das Bild eines alleinstehenden Helden zu beschreiben, der alleine gegen mehrere monotone Polizeibeamte steht. Einer gegen die ganze Welt ist ein Lieblingsbild der Revolutionshelden.

Not An Exhibition, DK Rozi, 2018
Niichegodelat

Aber etwas auf diesem Foto erlaubt es mir nicht, diese Figur einfach als Helden zu beschreiben, wie sie in der klassischen Literatur oder auf Leinwänden von Künstlern dargestellt wurden. Er tritt immer zum Betrachter mit dem Rücken auf, wir sehen sein Gesicht nicht, und das bedeutet, dass dies nicht so sehr ein großer Held ist als eine Funktion, eine Struktur. Dieser Kopfsteinwerfer ist keine bestimmte Person - jeder, der auf die Straßen von Paris ging, war dieser Kopfsteinwerfer.

 

Mit anderen Worten, wir können hier niemanden bestimmten hervorheben, ein Gesicht, ein Name und es auf die Fahnen setzen, einen Film über diesen Helden drehen, der für die Revolution gelitten hat, oder andere Mythenbildung betreiben. Konkrete Namen entgehen uns immer, wenn wir über die Ereignisse von 1968 sprechen. Dies erklärt das fast vollständige Fehlen großer Erzählungen über Mai ’68. Das Hauptgesicht der Revolution ist kein spezifischer Teilnehmer an den Ereignissen - weder Sartre noch ein rothaariger Denny oder Godard -, sondern der aktuelle Schauspieler Louis Garrel, der in drei Filmen über die Ereignisse von 1968 spielte: "Dreamers" von Bernardo Bertolucci, "Constant Lovers" von Philip Garrel und "The Young Godard" von Michel Hazanavicius.

Galerie Peresvetov Lane, Moskau. Cyber-nomadische Ankunft, 2019
Niichegodelat

Aber zurück zu unserer Figur des Kopfsteinwerfers. Als Gilles Caron einen Mann, der einen Kopfstein in Richtung der Polizei wirft, fotografierte, bezog er sich natürlich immer wieder auf bestimmte Personen. Sie haben Namen, Biografien, bestimmte Interessen, aber diese Figur kann nicht heroisiert werden. Genauer gesagt, wenn sie immer wieder mit dem Rücken zum Betrachter aufgenommen wird, wird sie zu einer Universalfigur oder zumindest zu einer Figur, die diese Universalität beansprucht.

 

In einem der bekannten Slogans vom Mai 1968, die übrigens auch mit dem Werfen von Pflastersteinen verbunden sind, kann ein ähnlicher Übergang von tiefsinnig zu politisch, von privat zu öffentlich, von einzigartig und individuell zu universell gesehen werden. "- Ich liebe dich! - Oh, sag mir das mit einem Kopfstein in der Hand!"

Dies ist auch eine Transformation, eine Lücke, eine Anwendung und ein Anspruch auf das Allgemeine. „Ich liebe dich“ und generell Liebe wird immer als tiefsinnige, wenn man sagen darf, extreme Sinneserfahrung beschrieben. Dies ist eine Erfahrung radikaler Sensibilität, die, wie es auf den ersten Blick scheint, nicht mit jemandem geteilt werden kann (in gewissem Sinne kann sie auch mit dem Gegenstand der Liebe nicht völlig geteilt werden). Der Zustand der Liebe ist das, was auslöst und was das Auslösen verursacht.

 

Auf eine seltsame Weise ist die Antwort auf das Ersuchen des "Ich liebe dich" die Forderung nach extremer Beteiligung und Öffentlichkeit. Genauso wie wir Liebe als innere Erfahrung radikaler Sensibilität interpretieren können, können wir Partizipation an der Revolution als Aufruf zu radikaler Kollektivität, Ausstieg aus der Privatsphäre in die Öffentlichkeit, als Praxis radikaler Politik verstehen.

Natürlich haben wir immer die Möglichkeit, den Slogan von 1968 im Freudschen Geist zu lesen, als Übertragung oder Sublimation der individuellen libidinösen Energie in das Feld der Macht und der Politik.

Aber vielleicht werden uns diese zwei Bilder: das Bild eines Kopfsteinwerfers, eines Helden/Funktion (Forderung nach dem Universellen) und der Slogan „Ich liebe dich!  - Oh, sag mir, mit einem Kopfstein in der Hand!“ (auch eine Forderung nach Universalität) helfen die Fragen erneut zu stellen: Wie sollen wir heute zusammenleben? Vielleicht wird es uns auch helfen, bestimmte Felder und Taktiken für neue Praktiken gemeinsamer ungeteilter Existenz zu finden.

Galerie Peresvetov Lane, Moskau. Cyber-nomadische Ankunft, 2019
Niichegodelat

Was zieht uns an dem vor 50 Jahren erschienenen Slogan an? Dies ist eine Feststellung einer Überempfindlichkeit als Prämisse. Wenn wir versuchen, das Paradigma zu beschreiben, das die Welt gerade erst anzunehmen beginnt und das in den 2010er Jahren seine Gestalt angenommen hat, dann wird ihr zentraler Kern die Sensibilität sein. Die Gründe für diese Empfindlichkeit liegen in völlig unterschiedlichen Bereichen und Trends. Wir sind sensibler geworden, weil wir uns konkret und ständig im Wandel befinden. Wir wurden sensibler durch das Aufkommen sozialer Netzwerke, die erfordern, dass wir hier und jetzt reagieren und uns engagieren, da dieser oder jener Beitrag oder Kommentar in wenigen Stunden unter Gigabytes an Informationen verschüttet liegen wird. Wir sind sensibel geworden, als Folge des großen Nachrichten- und Informationsflusses, der über uns strömt. Dies schafft Angst als Hintergrund, wie die Unfähigkeit, unsere Zukunft zu bestimmen und das gesamte Weltbild zu erfassen. Wir sind empfindlich geworden, aufgrund der großen emotionalen und körperlichen Erschöpfung, die mit einem freien und daher unregelmäßigen Arbeitszeitplan und ständigen Überstunden verbunden ist.

 

Wir sind sensibel geworden und daher reaktiv, was ein grenzenloses Feld für politische und ideologische Manipulationen eröffnet.  Der Rechtsruck und das Machtergreifen konservativer Politiker in den Vereinigten Staaten, Russland, Ungarn, Brasilien und Italien bestätigen nur die Gefahr, die mit der neuen Sensibilität verbunden ist. 

 

Die Identitätspolitik, die als Reaktion auf die heutige Sensibilität und „ethische Raserei“ praktiziert wird, das heißt die Analyse aller Aussagen, vor allem auf die Einhaltung der ethischen Kriterien, führt uns von dem Problem weg und begünstigt die Aufteilung in immer kleinere Gruppen. Zu derselben Zerstückelung trägt in ihrer jetzigen Form auch das Internet bei. Dem Benutzer wird nur das empfohlen und angezeigt, was nicht über die Grenzen seiner üblichen Hashtags hinausgeht, was den Weg zu einem gemütlichen, aber dennoch Ghetto pflastert und zu weiterer Spaltung beiträgt.

 

Es scheint, dass das Paradigma der neuen Sensibilität keine Chance lässt. Aber vielleicht hat gerade diese Sensibilität das Potenzial, sich dieser Manipulation zu widersetzen und unsere Uneinigkeit zu überwinden. Schließlich folgte der Slogan von 1968 genau dieser Logik, als hypertrophierte Sensibilität zur Grundlage des politischen Kampfs und kollektiven Widerstands wurde.

 

Im Dreiklang von Politik-Ethik-Ästhetik, richtet sich die Kombination aus Politik und Ethik, die die Vielfalt und Rechte der Unterdrückten behauptet, heute genau in die entgegengesetzte Richtung. Sie etabliert einen konservativen Diskurs und verteidigt die neoliberale Logik. In diesem Sinne kann die Ästhetik oder die Praxis zeitgenössischer Kunst die Antwort auf die Frage: Wie leben wir in einer Ära der Sensibilität zusammen? geben.

Not An Exhibition, DK Rozi, 2018
Niichegodelat

Auf einer Veranstaltung der Biennale “Mir bez Truda” beschrieb Alla Mitrofanova was heutzutage mit Ästhetik geschieht und wie sie  gegen gesellschaftliche Spaltung und Rückkehr traditioneller Werte funktionieren kann:

 

Ästhetik wird plötzlich akut politisch, die Existenz selbst wird politisch und ethisch gleichzeitig. Und dann stellt sich heraus, dass Künstler genau diesen Moment der Existenzbildung definieren. Wir haben einfach das Gefühl, dass wir nicht irgendwie abstrakt da sind. Sondern sind wir sind durch die Transformation der Form da und wir brauchen unbedingt eine ästhetische Lösung unserer Form. Tatsächlich wird Kunst daher lebenswichtig, weil wir sonst ohne Kunst und ohne ästhetische Lösung nicht verstehen, wie wir diese fließende Form, die Transformation unserer Existenz, aufrechterhalten können.

 

Aber wo soll man nach solchen Praktiken suchen? Wie sollen sie sein? Es scheint, dass wir heute in der Kunst die ästhetische Wende beobachten können, die im neuen Paradigma der Überempfindlichkeit funktioniert. Der Zweck einer künstlerischen Gruppe, einer Bewegung oder eines Ereignisses wird keine Ausstellung, kein spezifisches Objekt, sondern die Übertragung von Alltagspraktiken in die zeitgenössische Kunst, die Schaffung von nicht normativen Ereignissen und Räumen. Beispiele für einen solchen Ansatz sind die Künstlerinitiative “Noch'”, die St. Petersburger Bewegung „NIICHEGODELAT’“, die Biennale „Mir biz Truda“ und die Gruppe „RB!OB!“ aus Minsk.

Not An Exhibition, DK Rozi, 2018
Niichegodelat

Diese Bewegungen stehen im Zusammenhang mit Neuzusammensetzung der Alltagspraktiken, die einerseits mit dem Thema Sensibilität arbeiten, andererseits auf die Schaffung von Koexistenz abzielen. Zum Beispiel haben im 2018 Mitglieder der RB!OB! mehrere Tage in einem geheimen Sanatorium gelebt, um neue Formen des Zusammenlebens und gemeinsamen Zeitvertreibs zu praktizieren.

 

Oder die Initiative “Noch’”, in deren Rahmen der Kiewer Künstler und Kurator Nikita Kadan das Programm „Nacht im Wald!“ organisierte, bei der alle Mitglieder der Initiative die Nacht im Wald verbracht haben. Dieselbe Gruppe von Künstlern verbrachte eine Nacht in einem Zugwagen bei ausgeschaltetem Licht.

 

Alle diese Arbeiten unterscheiden sich grundlegend von den Relational Aesthetics der 90er und 00er Jahren, da diese immer noch darauf abzielt, ein Kunstwerk zu schaffen. Neue Bewegungen und Trends äußern sich nicht in bestimmten Kunstgegenständen. Deren Ziel ist es, Praktiken zu schaffen. Der Betrachter wird hier zum Teilnehmer und Künstler einer solchen Handlung, statt eine Rolle zu erhalten, die durch den Künstler zugewiesen wird.

 

In einer Situation, in der nicht nur Arbeit, sondern auch Freizeit reguliert wird und der Logik des Kapitals untergeordnet, ist die Schaffung neuer Alltagshandlungen, die dieser Logik entgehen, kein ästhetischer Exzess oder eine tiefe persönliche Erfahrung, sondern eine politische Aktion. 

 

In diesem Sinne verändert sich gerade aufgrund der Überempfindlichkeit auch die Figur des Künstlers, sie wird zur Figur des Kopfsteinwerfer, die Gilles Caron porträtiert hat. Dies ist kein Manager oder Great Creator mehr, sondern ein Bild, eine Funktion, die jeder aus- und anprobieren darf.

"Arbeite mehr! Mehr ausruhen!" Auf dem Foto: Valentina Petrova. Eine Vortragsreihe über sowjetische Arbeiterplakate im Zeitalter des Spätkapitalismus.
Foto von Dina Zhuk

Antonina Stebur

Antonina Stebur is eine Kuratorin und Forscherin. Studium der Bild- und Kulturwissenschaften an der European Humanities University (Vilnius, Litauen) und an der School of Engaged Art der Kunstgruppe "Chto Delat?" (Sankt Petersburg, Russland). Sie ist Mitglied der Künstlergruppe #damaudobnayavbytu ("Frau, die bequem im Alltag ist"), die die feministische Agenda im russischen und weisrussischen Kontext untersucht. Sie war Kuratorin einer Reihe von Ausstellungen in Belarus, Russland, Polen, Frankreich und China. Ihre Forschungsgebiete und kuratorischen Interessen sind: Gemeinschaft, Um-Zusammenstellung alltäglicher Praktiken, feministische Kritik, neue Sensibilität, Basisinitiativen.

 

Der Text wurde im Magazin "Innnerhalb der Trigger-Feld" der School of Engaged Art im Februar 2019 auf Russisch publiziert. Auf Deutsch erscheint der Text zum ersten Mal. Redakteur: Willi Reinecke, Übersetzerin: Ira Konyukhova

 

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