Hot Art in a Cold War - Exhibition and Programming

Ksenia Nouril's picture

Dear colleagues, 

The exhibition Hot Art in a Cold War: Intersections of Art and Science in the Soviet Era is now on view at the Bruce Museum in Greenwich, CT. Below is a list of upcoming programming associated with the exhibition. If you are in the area and wish to attend, reservations can be made online here

Ksenia Nouril

Tuesday, February 27, 6:30 – 8:00 pm. Evening Lecture. Building Dreamworlds, Facing Catastrophes: Art, Science and the Cold War, by Ksenia Nouril, Dodge Fellow, Zimmerli Art Museum and PhD Candidate, Department of Art History, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey. Nouril will examine how artists in the Soviet Union responded to advancements in the sciences during the late Cold War period (1960s-1980s). Highlighting several key works of art from the exhibition Hot Art in a Cold War: Intersections of Art and Science in the Soviet Era, Nouril will show how artists working in the Soviet republics of Russia, Ukraine, Estonia, and Latvia were both directly and indirectly inspired by science, math, engineering, and design. The paintings, sculptures, photographs, and drawings they produced make prescient proposals that are still applicable to our world today. Reception at 6:30 pm; talk 7:00 – 8:00 pm. 

Wednesday, March 7, 10:30 – 11:30 am. Film.The Russian Concept: Reflections on Russian Non-Conformist Art. (56 minutes) Directed by Igor Sopronenko. The documentary explores non-conformist Russian art through interviews and documentary footage and tells the story of art collector Norton Dodge whose efforts have resulted in the largest collection of Russian-Soviet non-conformist art in the world. 

Thursday, March 8, 6:00 – 8:00 pm. An Evening with Corey Flintoff, former NPR correspondent based in Russia and ex-Soviet countries. Reception at 6:00 pm; talk at 6:30 pm.

Tuesday, March 13, 6:30 – 8:00 pm. Marianne Smith Memorial Lecture. Sweet Ideology of Soviet Space Dogs during Cold War by Dr. Olesya Turkina, Senior Research Fellow at the State Russian Museum, St. Petersburg. The lecturewill discuss the intermingling of science and ideology surrounding the dogs used in the Soviet Space Program and its impact on Soviet domestic policies during the Cold War. She will explore the different ways the space dogs were used in propaganda artifacts, including postcards, stamps, and even cigarette boxes. Additionally, she will compare public reception of art related to the Soviet space program during the time it was created (1960s-80s) and how it is perceived now. Reception at 6:30 pm; talk 7:00 – 8:00 pm.

Wednesday, March 14, 10:30 – 11:30 am. Film. In Search of a Lost Paradise. (52 minutes, Russian with English subtitles). This award-winning documentary recounts the story of Russian artist Valentina Kropivnitskaya and her husband Oskar Rabin, who, in 1974, organized a prohibited open-air art exhibition that was destroyed using KGB bulldozers. The film highlights the struggle of living under a totalitarian regime while attempting to retain personal and artistic freedoms 

Monday, April 23, 10:30 – 11:00 am. Morning Lecture."Cold War Art Collection" by Dr. Courtney Doucette, Visiting Assistant Professor of History at Connecticut College. This talk explores the material, political, and cultural challenges of collecting Soviet art during the Cold War. It will also suggest that exchange between Soviet artists and Western collections remained possible even when an Iron Curtain divided Europe and explore the ways in which the Cold War shaped Soviet unofficial art and collections through which we study it today.

Tuesday, April 24, 6:00 – 8:00 pm. Evening Lecture. "Technology as Decoy: The Subversive Abstraction of The Movement Collective" by Dr. Jane A. Sharp, Associate Professor, Twentieth-Century Art, Russian and Soviet Art, Soviet Nonconformist Art, Rutgers University. This lecture explores the quasi-scientific rhetoric of kinetic art in Russia during the 1960s, at the end of the Soviet Thaw era. Reception at 6:00 pm; talk at 6:30 pm.