IPCNY is pleased to present Russian Revolution: A Contested Legacy. Commemorating the centennial of the 1917 Russian Revolution, this scholarly exhibition looks beyond the canon of the Russian avant-garde to focus on three avenues of individual freedoms sought by the fledgling socialist society: the equality and emancipation of women; internationalism, including racial equality and the rights of ethnic minorities in Russia, especially Jews; and sexual and gay liberation.

By placing a selection of historical printed works by key Russian avant-garde artists of the 1920s and 1930s, including such well-known names as Gustav Klucis, El Lissitzky, and Elizaveta Ignatovich, in dialogue with contemporary works by Russian-born, New York-based artists Yevgeniy Fiks and Anton Ginzburg, the exhibition evaluates these often-obscured goals of the Revolution and addresses their continued urgency today – in Russia, the United States, and elsewhere. 

The exhibition will be accompanied by an extensive brochure designed by Anton Ginzburg and published by IPCNY, featuring an essay by curator Masha Chlenova as well as an illustrated chronology by Chlenova and Yevgeniy Fiks and a bibliography providing further historical context for the material on view.

Open the full press release (.pdf)


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Masha Chlenova (Ph.D., Columbia University; b. Moscow; has lived and worked in New York since 1995) is a curator and modernist art historian specializing in the Russian avant-garde. She has worked at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Guggenheim Museum, and The Museum of Modern Art, where she co-organized “Inventing Abstraction, 1910-1925” with Leah Dickerman. Her recent publications include: “Theater” in Revolutsiia! Demonstratsiia! Soviet Art Put to the Test, 1917-1937.” Matt Witkowsky and Devin Fore, eds. Chicago: Art Institute of Chicago, 2017; “Soviet Museology in the Cultural Revolution: An Educational Turn, 1928-33” in the French peer-reviewed journal Histoire@Politique, 2017; “Soviet Art in Review: ‘Fifteen Years of Artists of the Russian Soviet Republic’ in Leningrad, 1932” in Revolution: Russian Art, 1917-32. John Millner and Natalia Murray, eds. London: Royal Academy of Arts, 2017, “The Secret Recesses of Picabia’s Transparencies” in Anne Umland, ed. Francis Picabia: A Retrospective. New York: The Museum of Modern Art, 2016 and “Motivating the Line: Waclaw Szpakowski’s Modernism” in Ela Lubowicz, ed. Waclaw Szpakowski: Rhythmical Lines. Wroclaw: Culture and Art Center, 2016. Chlenova has participated in numerous symposia and conferences on these topics.

She teaches art history at The New School and works as a project-based curator at the Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, where she is initiating a multi-year research and exhibition project dedicated to Stedelijk’s outstanding collection of Russian modernism and organizing a major exhibition on Willem de Kooning and post-war modernism.



Photo: Jesse Jiryu Davis

Photo: Jesse Jiryu Davis

Yevgeniy Fiks (b. 1972, Moscow; has lived and worked in New York since 1994) is a contemporary artist who works across mediums and disciplines, producing artworks, exhibitions, and books that seek out and explore repressed microhistorical narratives that highlight the complex relationships between social histories of the West and the Soviet bloc in the 20th century. Fiks’ work has been shown at Winkleman and Postmasters galleries (New York), MASS MoCA, and the Philadelphia Museum of Art; the Moscow Museum of Modern Art and Marat Guelman Gallery in Moscow; Sala de Arte Público Siqueiros in Mexico City; and the Museu Colecção Berardo in Lisbon. His work has been included in the Biennale of Sydney (2008), Moscow Biennale of Contemporary Art (2011), and Thessaloniki Biennale of Contemporary Art (2015). His most recent projects include the installation Óptica Bronstein (2017) (with Pablo Helguera) in the exhibition Space Force Construction at the V-A-C Foundation, Venice; and the curatorial project In Edenia, a City of the Future (2017) (with Larissa Babij) in Yermilov Center, Kharkiv, Ukraine. http://yevgeniyfiks.com

Photo: Willy Somma

Photo: Willy Somma

Anton Ginzburg (b. 1974, St. Petersburg; has lived and worked in New York since 1992) is known for his films, sculptures, paintings, and text-based printed work investigating historical narratives and poetic studies of place, representation, and post-Soviet identity. His work has been shown at the 54th Venice Biennale, the Blaffer Art Museum at the University of Houston, Palais de Tokyo in Paris, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, White Columns in New York, Lille3000 in Euralille, France, and the first and second Moscow Biennales. His films have been screened at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Dallas Symphony Orchestra, Nasher Sculpture Center in Dallas, Les Rencontres Internationales in Paris, and Haus der Kulturen der Welt in Berlin. Forthcoming projects include Stargaze:Orion (2016), a 24-foot outdoor sculpture commission for the US Embassy in Moscow (Art in Embassies), as well as screenings of his recent films at Whitechapel Gallery in London on October 1, 2017 and at Anthology Film Archives in New York on November 28, 2017. His work will be the subject of a one-person exhibition at Fridman Gallery in New York, November 15 – December 23, 2017. www.antonginzburg.com




Click here to open the full checklist as a pdf. E-mail contact@ipcny.org to request images of historical works.