New Brunswick, NJ – With such rapid advances in digital tools, we sometimes find ourselves lamenting about artists who were ahead of their time, guessing what Leonardo could have done with a jet engine or Warhol, with Instagram. Regarding Soviet nonconformist artist Leonid Lamm (1928–2017), however, we do not have to wonder. With a career spanning 70 years, technology caught up to his artistic vision and he became one of the most surprising and versatile artists in the history of Soviet nonconformist and contemporary Russian-American art. Nevermore: Leonid Lamm, Selected Works, on view through September 30 at the Zimmerli Art Museum at Rutgers, examines his prolific career, which was stimulated by a lifelong inquiry into the multidimensional energy of space. More than 60 works on view represent three key periods: his early decades in the Soviet Union, the period following his move to the United States in the 1980s, and his incorporation of digital formats in more recent years. Free, public events that spotlight the exhibition include an evening reception on March 9 and Art After Hours: First Tuesdays on June 5. Details are available at www.zimmerlimuseum.rutgers.edu.
Dear SHERA Members,
Panel proposals for a SHERA sponsored panel for the 2019 CAA Annual Conference in New York, February 13-16, are invited.
We encourage submission of proposals discussing issues of art or art history in any of the fields SHERA as a Society covers. The organizer of the panel must be a CAA member (membership number must be provided) as well as member of SHERA.
Please submit your panel proposal to email@example.com by April 15, 2018. While SHERA’s Board will select the panel to be submitted on our Society’s behalf to CAA, be reminded that the ultimate decision of acceptance is CAA’s.
The SHERA Board is pleased to announce the SHERA-sponsored panel to be held at the meeting of ASEEES in Boston from December 6-10 as well as two runners-up. While ASEEES does not have a mechanism for noting runners-up in the convention’s online or printed schedules, we would like to recognize particularly interesting panels as well as alerting the membership to their colleagues’ current and ongoing research. Thank you to everyone who took the time to submit a panel.
Final confirmation of acceptance of panels will not be announced until June 1. After that time, SHERA’s board members will pull together a list of all panels potentially of interest to the membership. Members are all invited to announce their panels, together with dates and times, on H-SHERA after acceptance notifications are sent out in early May.
The panel selected for 2018 is:
The Passion for Collecting: Collectors and Their Collections in Imperial Russia (1800-1917)
The panel is devoted to the history of private collections in the long nineteenth century in imperial Russia. It discusses collections, collectors and their collecting practices in order to explore collectors’ purposes and intellectual pursuits, the exhibiting and popularization of collected objects, art and artifacts, and debates triggered by collections’ display.
Chair: Kyeann Sayer, PhD Candidate (University of Hawai’i at Manoa)
Laura Schlosberg, PhD (Stanford University), “Zinaida Volkonskaia’s Allée de Souvenirs at the Villa Wolkonsky in Rome”
The paper examines Volkonskaia’s Allée de Souvenirs as a historical and autobiographical creation, a collection with both personal and educational purposes. While Diego Angeli identified the Allée as an expression of Volkonskaia’s nostalgia, the Allée presents a historical narrative, one in conversation with its Roman setting connecting Russia to European civilization.
Hanna Chuchvaha, PhD (Independent scholar), “Craftswomen and Stitches: Print Collections of Female Crafts in Late Imperial Russia (1860-1917)”
The paper analyzes the specific female collectors’ focus on objects associated with women, their pastimes, domesticity and femininity understood as an expression of both self and group identity. The paper explores the printed albums of female crafts collected and published by Sofia Davydova, Olena Pchilka, Princess S. N. Shakhovskaia, Natalia Shabel’skaia’s daughters, and Ebba Salwen.
Isabel Stokholm, PhD Candidate (University of Cambridge), “‘Having glimpsed the light, one does not wish for darkness’: Reform and Rehang in the Tretyakov Gallery, 1913-1917”
The paper explores four years of upheaval and change in the Tretyakov, bookended by the publication of its first scholarly catalogue in 1917. It examines how Russia’s artistic community engaged with the gallery when it was still finding its feet in the transition from private to national, following the death of Pavel Tretyakov fourteen years prior.
Discussant: Alla Myzelev, PhD (SUNY, Geneseo)
As noted above, we hope that all those attending the 2018 meeting will note the two submitted panels selected as runners-up:
Culture’s Industry, Industry’s Culture: Negotiation of Art, Craft and Industry through the Soviet Mid-Century
Christianna Bonin, Presenter and Chair, PhD Candidate, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Olivia Crough, Presenter, PhD Candidate, Harvard University
Suheyla Takesh, Presenter, SMArchS Candidate, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Dr. Maria Mileeva, Discussant, Teaching Fellow, University College London
Perhaps more than any other topos, the industrial factory has shaped conceptions of Soviet art in historical and contemporary imaginations. Its salience is evident in the divergent ways that artists, critics, and political officials debated and performed the effects of industrial mass production on art-making across the Soviet mid-century: from the 1920s, when the production line became the key to training “engineerartists” and socializing art by removing it from allegedly backward handcraft and bourgeois studio practices; to the 1960s, when a growing number of historians and preservationists viewed industrialization as a threat to traditional cultures and craft skills. Questioning culture’s changing relationship to labor and industry, this panel examines the effects of the industrial factory as both a real and imagined site on artists and their work. Our case studies focus on artists from or practicing across Central Asia, Russia, and the Middle East because their work critically reveals the extent of Soviet cultural and industrial hegemony, as well as shifts in the utility of local practice to industry before and after World War II. In each of our case studies, we consider the circulation and commoditization of objects and practical knowledge into market goods, collectibles and tourism industries. Countering the belief that modern industry eliminates craft or tradition, this panel reveals how these concepts operate in tandem in the Soviet context.
The first paper considers Varvara Stepanova’s role in the state publishing industry, as a woman designer and art director, parsing how publications such as 10 years of Soviet Uzbekistan (1934) produces relations between Central Asian culture, craft, and the cotton industry in the 1930s. The second paper analyzes a hybrid form of painting made by a young generation of Kazakh artists in 1960s Almaty. Aware that the introduction of industrial labor and a system of fine art education had deskilled or eliminated certain forms of Kazakh carpet-making, this group combined older carpet-making techniques with the primitivist aesthetics of Western artists in their paintings in order to perform their modernity internationally, while also appealing to state-led craft revival programs. The third paper examines the work of Iraqi artist Mahmoud Sabri, who studied in Moscow in the 1960s under socialist realist painter Aleksandr Deineka” and utilized the aesthetic and craft technique of Orthodox icon painting in works attending to the trauma of Communists’ repression in Iraq.
Exhibiting Artistic Change: Social and Aesthetic Dimensions of Art Exhibitions in Imperial Russia
This panel aims to explore the changing role, function, and format of art exhibitions in Imperial Russia. Advocating an interdisciplinary approach, the panel will address both the aesthetic and the social aspects of art exhibitions. The aesthetic aspect will include examination of the manner in which the state, academies, voluntary societies, art groups and individual artists represent their aesthetic agenda through the exhibition medium; the extent to which the exhibition can be instrumental in constructing and promoting national identity; and the ways in which art exhibitions affected the development of the art historical narratives. The social aspect will explore both the political and commercial dimensions of the exhibition practice: to which extent did art exhibitions contribute to the expansion of the public art scene in Russia? What was the role of the art market, state (censorship), voluntary societies, artists, critics and viewers in this process? How did the art exhibition as a marketing tool change over time and what were the social and artistic implications?
Chair: Aglaya Glebova, UC Irvine
Margaret Samu, The New School, Parsons School of Design, Art Exhibitions at Auctions and Estate Sales in St. Petersburg 1750–1850
Where could St. Petersburgers see and learn about works of art in the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries? Most scholarly literature about this period dwells on the absence of art on public view in the capital, relieved only by the triennial exhibitions at the Imperial Academy of Arts. Recent research, however, shows that exhibitions held before auctions and estate sales served as important venues for members of the literate classes to develop their knowledge of art and hone their connoisseurial skills. Because these exhibitions did not charge admission, nor require viewers to make purchases, they allowed non-elite classes the same opportunity to view art as the nobility who bought works for their collections. Drawing on newspaper announcements, sale inventories, and other primary sources, this paper will examine the role of these exhibitions in the development of taste and visual literacy in St. Petersburg before the mid-nineteenth century.
Nikita Balagurov, Higher School of Economics Saint Petersburg, Inventing the Russian School of Art at the 1882 All-Russian Exhibition
Abstract. In Moscow in 1882, the state-sponsored All-Russian Exhibition for the first time showcased achievements in the arts, along with those in heavy and light industries. Celebrating Tsar Alexander II’s reign, this Art Section, entitled “Twenty-Five Years of Russian Art”, became the first comprehensive survey of contemporary Russian art. By reconstructing the ideological, social and aesthetic aspects of the section, this paper scrutinizes this earliest attempt to formulate a narrative of a Russian “national school of art,” which was then further developed by the critic Vladimir Stasov in his influential essay by the same title (1882–1883) and in the founding of the Russian Museum of Alexander III in Saint Petersburg in 1898.
Andrey Shabanov, European University at St Petersburg, The End of the “Salons” in Russia and Western Europe
Abstract. The most defining professional emancipation of Russian artists in the late nineteenth century occurred with the privatization of art exhibitions — from an exhibition ruled by the Academy or other state-sponsored institutions, to one that was independently run. This change was realized by the Peredvizhniki (known in English as the Wanderers or Itinerants), which consisted of Moscow and St Petersburg artists who organized touring art exhibitions. The present paper will explore this major shift in exhibiting practices in Russia and its broader aesthetic and social implications. It will also examine how these changes related to similar late nineteenth-century institutional developments in Western Europe.
Maria Mileeva, University College London, Research and Teaching Fellow
Jane Sharp, Rutgers University
Hot Art in a Cold War: Intersections of Art and Science in the Soviet Era
January 27, 2018 - May 20, 2018
Opening on January 27, 2018, the Bruce Museum’s provocative new exhibition Hot Art in a Cold War: Intersections of Art and Science in the Soviet Era examines one of the dominant concerns of Soviet unofficial artists—and citizens everywhere—during the Cold War: the consequences of innovation in science, technology, mathematics, communications, and design. Juxtaposing art made in opposition to state-sanctioned Socialist Realism with artifacts from the Soviet nuclear and space programs, Hot Art in a Cold War touches upon the triumphs and tragedies unleashed as humankind gained the power to both leave the Earth and to destroy it.
Produced from the 1960s to the 1980s, the works on view address themes of international significance during a turbulent period marked by the ever-escalating competition for nuclear supremacy and the space race. Creative interpretations of these key historical events and their repercussions are presented here through nearly 40 works by 17 artists from the former Soviet republics of Estonia, Latvia, Ukraine, and Russia.
The program “The Art and Science of Museums” is hosted by the Hermitage Educational Center in St. Petersburg, Russia.
Program Dates: June 17 - July 7, 2018 Application Deadline: March 1, 2018 Cost: $3,995 Includes: Tuition, dormitory accommodation, insurance, Russian visa, airport transfers, transcript of studies.
Russia’s rich cultural heritage is complimented by a unique emphasis that Russians place on history and education. This has helped Russia produce one of the world’s most extensive museum systems, one well-known not only for impressive collections but also thematic versatility, multiplicity of display modes, and sheer number of institutions. With private and public support, many of Russia’s museums are being modernized and new museums are being established. Russians have also supported this as some of the world’s most avid museum enthusiasts.
The Art and Science of Museums seeks to understand the Russian museum phenomenon and covers wide subject matter. Topics include: the history of collecting, the “museumification” of historic and cultural sites, museum operations (e.g. storage facilities, restoration labs, exhibition curation, education, and development), integration of technology and interactivity, and museum educational work.
The Art and Science of Museums is for students looking to understand how cultural and historical heritage can be best preserved and transmitted. Over an intensive three weeks in beautiful St. Petersburg, Russia, we will take a behind-the-scenes look at the Hermitage Museum, and explore a plethora of others including educational museums at schools of higher learning, scientific museums, museums of ethnography, memorial apartment museums, literary museums, political history museums, and more.
For more information and how to apply, please visit: http://www.sras.org/study_art_museums_russia
We are pleased to announce the results of the December 2017 SHERA elections and warmly welcome the following individuals to the SHERA Board. Congratulations! We look forward to working with you.
Members-at-large (2 year term)
Hanna Chuchvaha Nic Iljine Natalia Kolodzei Andrey Shabanov
Secretary-Treasurer (2 year term)
Alice Isabella Sullivan
Web News Editor (1 year term)
Corina L. Apostol
Thank you to the SHERA dues-paying members who voted.
Sincerely, SHERA Officers
Eva Forgacs, President Karen Kettering, Vice-President/President-Elect Ksenia Nouril, Secretary-Treasurer Yelena Kalinsky, Listserv Administrator Corina L. Apostol, Web News Editor Anna P. Sokolina, SHERA-SAH Liaison
April 1 - December 31, 2018
The ArtsLink Back Apartment Residency program provides opportunities for international artists and curators to conduct research, create new work, collaborate with the local arts community, and create special projects in St. Petersburg, Russia. Each month residency is individually designed to enable visiting artists and curators to learn about the Russian arts community, develop their own work, and share information about their work and other cultures with local audiences.
The ArtsLink Back Apartment invites artists and curators interested in learning about contemporary art in Russia and building relationships with the local arts community. Though preference is given to artists and curators working in the fields of socially engaged art and public art, artists working in other fields are also welcome to apply.
CEC ArtsLink currently funds residencies by artists and curators from the United States. CEC ArtsLink will provide international travel, visa support (if needed), accommodation, and per diem. Artists from other countries are welcome to apply, but will need to seek financial support to cover their expenses. CEC ArtsLink will provide lodging at the residency space.
Interested artists and curators can apply by completing the on-line application form. Applications will be available online from October 23 and accepted until December 15, 2017 (for residencies between April 1 and December 31, 2018, the residency is closed in August).
Duration of the Residency for artists is 1 month, and for curators is 7-10 days. Back Apartment Residency Awards will be announced by February 1, 2018.
The CEC ArtsLink Back Apartment Residency program is funded by the Kettering Family Philanthropies and Trust for Mutual Understanding
SHERA invites our members to submit session proposals for a SHERA-sponsored session at the Society of Architectural Historians SAH 72nd Annual International Conference in Providence RI, April 24-28, 2019. Session proposals should be submitted to the SHERA Board at: [firstname.lastname@example.org] (email@example.com) by SHERA deadline - December 10, 2017, and should comply with the instructions found below in the SAH Call for Sessions. The chair (co-chairs) of the selected proposal will be notified ASAP, for timely submission on the SAH website.
The individual proposing a SHERA-sponsored session must follow the same selection process for SAH conference sessions proposed by organizations as those proposed by individuals. Acceptance is not guaranteed. A Conference session selected by SAH Conference Committee is considered an academic achievement.
Session proposals must include the following elements:
- A session title not longer than 65 characters, including spaces and punctuation
- Summary of the subject and the premise in no more than 500 words
- Name, professional affiliation (if applicable), address, telephone, and email address (if your session is sponsored by SHERA, you also have to become a SAH member, and ensure that the information you are providing matches an existing SAH profile/membership account to avoid misdirecting communications.
- A current CV (2 pages maximum)
Although the SAH membership is international, the annual conference is conducted in English. Therefore, all session proposals must be submitted in English and, if accepted, conducted in English.
SAH Call for Sessions SAH 2019 Annual International Conference
SAH Submission Deadline: January 16, 2018, at 5 pm CST.
The Society of Architectural Historians will offer a total of 36 paper sessions at its 2019 Annual International Conference in Providence, Rhode Island. The Society invites its members, including graduate students and independent scholars, representatives of SAH chapters and partner organizations, to chair a session at the conference. As SAH membership is required to chair or present research at the annual conference, non-members who wish to chair a session will be required to join SAH next August 2018 when conference registration opens for Session Chairs and Speakers. Since the principal purpose of the SAH annual conference is to inform attendees of the general state of research in architectural history and related disciplines, session proposals covering every time period and all aspects of the built environment, including landscape and urban history, are encouraged.
Sessions may be theoretical, methodological, thematic, interdisciplinary, pedagogical, revisionist or documentary in premise and ambition and have broadly conceived or more narrowly focused subjects. Sessions that embrace cross-cultural, transnational and/or non-Western topics are particularly welcome. In every case, the subject should be clearly defined in critical and historical terms.
Since late submissions cannot be considered, it is recommended that proposals be submitted well before the deadline. Last-minute submissions that fail posting in the online portal or are sent in error via email cannot be considered. Only proposals submitted through the online portal can be considered. To ensure broad participation in the SAH Annual International Conference, individuals are limited to the role of either a session chair OR a speaker. If you are selected as a session chair you may not submit a paper abstract to other sessions to be considered for speaking. Each Session Chair and Speaker is expected to fund his or her own travel and related expenses to participate in the conference. A copy of the Session Chair and Speaker Agreement that includes deadlines and step-by-step processes will be distributed to both Session Chairs and Speakers. Session Chairs and Speakers are required to join SAH and pre-register for the conference starting in August 2018.
SAH Key Dates October 03, 2017, 3 pm CDT - Call for sessions opens January 16, 2018, 5 pm CST - Deadline to submit a session proposal February 23, 2018 - Session selection notification March 9, 2018, 5 pm CDT - Revised session proposals due April 3, 2018, 3 pm CDT - Call for papers opens June 5, 2018, 5 pm CDT - Deadline to submit a paper abstract June 7, 2018 - Session Chairs start reviewing paper submissions July 13, 2018 - Session Chairs make final selection of papers and notify speakers August 1, 2018 - Session Chair & Speaker registration opens September 27, 2018 - Session Chair & Speaker registration closes
The SHERA Emerging Scholar Prize was awarded to Christina E. Crawford (Emory University) for her article “From Tractors to Territory: Socialist Urbanization through Standardization,” Journal of Urban History (January 2018).
The jury consisted of Carolyn C. Guile, Janet Kennedy, Juliet Koss, Marie Alice L’Heureux, and Colleen McQuillen.
Jury commendation: Rigorously researched and theoretically astute, Christina Crawford’s essay “From Tractors to Territory: Socialist Urbanization through Standardization” (Journal of Urban History) is the Award Committee’s unanimous choice for the First Annual SHERA Emerging Scholars’ Essay Prize. Examining the design and construction of both the Kharkiv Tractor Factory (1930-31) and the neighboring planned city for its workers, Crawford details the importation of a Fordist model of industrial standardization into a Soviet context and demonstrates how the concept of priviazka, taken from contemporaneous architectural discourse, was productively applied to other spheres in order to facilitate rapid growth in manufacturing and distribution. Her essay illuminates the importance of adaptability within the ostensibly standardized design practices that fueled the breakneck tempo of industrialization and urbanization during Stalin’s first Five-Year Plan. Innovative and authoritative, Crawford’s scholarship offers a methodological model for considering the relationship of architectural design and economic development during the process of early Soviet industrialization.
Next Emerging Scholar Prize deadline: September 30, 2018
Recent developments in biotechnology, genetics, and artificial intelligence suggest that the ancient myths of eternal youth, immortality, and material resurrection are now a tangible horizon of the technological imagination. At the same time, a century of dreams for travel in cosmic space and life on other planets have coalesced into a new transcendental realm—infinite in size, yet located in the material world, which itself has radically expanded. What are the politics and aesthetics of life in this new world? Already in the late 19th century, Russian philosopher Nikolai Fedorov started considering some of these questions in his philosophy of the common task, which advocated technological immortality, material resurrection for all who had ever lived, and the exploration of outer space. A central tenet of Fedorov’s larger philosophical outlook, known as Russian Cosmism, puts art on par with science, technology, and social organization as an integral force ushering in the new world. Fedorov’s ideas inspired numerous artists, writers, and scientists in his lifetime and well after his physical death. Following the October Revolution in 1917, Russian Cosmism became attractive to the materialist philosophy at the core of Communist ideology. This radical vision of everlasting life in the cosmos was particularly important for the Russian avant-garde, which explored the possibilities of new worlds through Suprematism, Constructivism, and other related movements that have been long represented in the collection of The Museum of Modern Art. post presents “Russian Cosmism: A Work of Art in the Age of Technological Immortality” will address the ideas of Russian Cosmism and their relevance to our time. During this one-night symposium, Boris Groys will speak on the biopolitics of technological immortality and resurrection; Arseny Zhilyaev considers the aesthetic ideals of Russian Cosmism including “life building” in collaboration with God; Hito Steyerl will talk about continued quests for the elixir of immortality, euthanasia, and genocide; and Anton Vidokle will present a recent short film called The Communist Revolution Was Caused by the Sun. Boris Groys is a philosopher, essayist, and media theorist. Having taught in Philadelphia, Münster, and Los Angeles, he became Professor of Art History, Philosophy and Media Theory at the Karlsruhe University of Arts and Design in 1994. In 2009, he was appointed Professor of Russian and Slavic Studies at New York University. He has published widely on the subject of the Russian avant-garde and was curator of the exhibition Dream Factory Communism at Schirn Kunsthalle Frankfurt in 2003–04. Hito Steyerl is a writer and filmmaker. Her works have been exhibited at the 32nd São Paulo Biennial (2016), the 9th Berlin Biennale (2016), the German Pavilion at the 56th Venice Biennale (2015), and Documenta 12 (2007), among other venues and institutions. Anton Vidokle is an artist and editor of e-flux journal. He was born in Moscow and lives in New York and Berlin. Vidokle’s work has been exhibited internationally at Documenta 13 and at the 56th Venice Biennale. His films have been presented at the Centre Pompidou, Paris; Tate Modern, London; Garage Museum, Moscow; Remai Modern, Saskatoon; and others. Arseny Zhilyaev is an artist based in Moscow. In recent works he has examined the legacy of Soviet museology and the museum within Russian Cosmism. Among other writings, he has published articles in e-flux journal. Zhilyaev is editor of Avant-Garde Museology (2015). His works have been shown at the Gwangju Biennale, Liverpool Biennial, and the Ljubljana Triennial, as well as in exhibitions at the Centre Pompidou and Palais de Tokyo, Paris; De Appel, Amsterdam; Kadist Art Foundation, Paris and San Francisco; and the V-A-C Foundation, Moscow.