A new exhibition featuring the work of two artists, Anatoly Osmolovsky and Paweł Althamer, documents the transition to post-communism experience in both Russia and Eastern Europe in the early Nineties. Using different forms and media such as sculpture, installation and video art, the two artists, one from Russia and one from Poland, explore the potential of art to bring about social change.
Polish artist Althamer's art is best known for exploring the body, self-portraiture and the subjectivity of human experience. One of his major works to be shown at the exhibition, So-called Waves and Other Phenomena of the Mind (2003-4), is an eight-screen installation of short films that look at his experiments with a range of mind-altering substances including LSD, peyote and truth serum. Another artwork, Parys, a large-scale bronze cast, will also be on show, continuing his life-long investigation into depictions of the human body.
A huge body of work from Moscow-born Anatoly Osmolovsky will be displayed at the exhibition, much of which has rarely been seen outside of Russia. A series of films of documentary photographs will look at Osmolovsky's artistic career, which started with a series of political performances in Moscow. During this time, he headed the Radek Community, a group of artists, musicians and art critics who believed in using art as a tool for protest. A number of artworks will examine his move to sculpture over recent years.
The exhibition, Parallel Convergences, is on at the Casa dei Tre Oci gallery in Venice until 6 October in collaboration with V-A-C Foundation, a not-for-profit Moscow-based institution committed to the promotion of contemporary art.