Fascinated by the myth of the Russian avant-garde and scornful of official art, the West has been selective in its engagement with Russian visual culture. Yet how do contemporary Russian scholars and critics themselves approach the history of visual culture in the former Soviet Union? Taking its title from a Russian word that can refer to the "texture" of life, painting, or writing, Tekstura assembles 13 key essays in art history and cultural theory by Russian-language writers. The essays erase boundaries between high and low, official and dissident, avant-garde and socialist realism. Everything visual is deemed worthy of analysis, whether painting or propaganda banners, architecture or candy wrappers, mass celebrations or urban refuse. The editors have selected works of the past 20 years by philosophers, literary critics, film scholars, and art historians as well as influential earlier essays by Bakhtin, Voloshinov, and Eisenstein. Compiled for general readers and specialists alike, Tekstura is a resource for anyone interested in Russian and Soviet cultural history or in new theoretical approaches to the visual.
Foreword, Stephen Bann Object, Space, Culture: Introduction, Alla Efimova and Lev Manovich 1 The Study of Ideologies and Philosophy of Language, V. N. Voloshinov 2 Yermolova, Sergei Eisenstein 3 The Spacial Form of a Character, Mikhail Bakhtin 4 Painting and the Language of Theater: Notes on the Problem of Iconic Rhetoric, Yury Lotman 5 Movement--Immobility, Vladimir Paperny 6 Sots-Art, Zinovy Zinik 7 Public and Artist in Russia at the Turn of the Twentieth Century, Grigory Sternin 8 Stalinism as Aesthetic Phenomenon, Boris Groys 9 Transparency Painting: From Myth to Theater, Mikhail Yampolsky 10 Things and Words: Toward a Lyrical Museum, Mikhail Epshtein 11 The Ropes of Ilya Kabakov: An Experiment in Interpretation of a Conceptual Installation, Alexander Rappaport 12 Mass Celebrations in a Totalitarian System, Alexander Zakharov 13 Paper Architecture in the Age of the French Revolution, Gennady Revzin