Anna Bitkina

In her curatorial practice, Anna Bitkina focuses on socio-political processes that occurred in Russia and the post-Soviet territories after the collapse of the Soviet Union. Her research looks at the local and global implications caused by the acceleration of capitalism in the region. Anna also explores the changing role of cultural workers, the possibilities of creative practices, and the agency of artists in different social spheres. In different years, she has contributed to 3rd Moscow Biennale of Contemporary Art (2009), 2nd Moscow International Biennale for Young Art (2010), 10th Manifesta Biennale (2014). She curated Nordic Art Today: Conceptual Debts, Broken Dreams, New Horizons (2011), United States of Europe (2011-2013) as well as the on-going public art project Critical Mass (2009-2017). Together with Maria Veits among others, she co-curated Propaganda News Machine: Creating Multiple Realities in the Media, and States of Control (2016-2017).

ONLINE: Screening Chapter #2

Performing Words, Uttering Performance

The changing role and function of language before and after the “transition” cannot be discussed without considering the dimension of authoritarian speech acts in the last phase of socialism. Anthropologist Alexei Yurchak shares the observation that during the authoritarian speech act, sign and reference, language and gesture, word and action merge into each other. This thesis is the foundation for an understanding of the variety of linguistic and performative experiments in post-socialist video art. The curators will focus on video works that reflect upon shifts in language and meaning and employ diverse silent, verbal, performative, activist, and other strategies to discuss collective and personal memory, identity, power relations, gender roles, and socio-political change.

→ See the screening dates in the Program