PUSHKIN HOUSE PRESENTS
A Pavilion by ALEXANDER BRODSKY
101st km Further Everywhere
Opening: 18 October 2017 at 6.30pm in Bloomsbury Square as part of Bloomsbury Festival which runs 18-22 October.
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The pavilion and exhibition are open 11am-dusk every day 19 October - 10 November. Free entry.
To mark the centenary of the Russian revolution, Pushkin House is breaking out into Bloomsbury Square with an artistic installation about Russian poetry in exile. This pavilion, by leading Russian artist and architect, Alexander Brodsky, celebrates the power of the word and the individual voice.
The 101st km, a concept well known in Russia, refers to the distance that poets and others were forced to maintain from major cities, often after returning from the labour camps – a kind of internal exile and attempt by the authorities to suppress them.
The pavilion creates a refuge for these voices, which passers-by are invited to enter and experience.
The second part of the title 'further everywhere' refers to the poetic and mysterious announcement heard on local trains leaving from Moscow, a general denominator for calling points after the centre of the city, that conjures up the vast expanses of Russia, and the rest of the world beyond its borders – wherever the exiled is forced to go.
The interior of the pavilion will be hung with poems written in exile or addressing the condition. Video and audio installations evoke associations with a train carriage with an unknown destination.
This is the first artistic pavilion to be built in Bloomsbury Square, and the first in this country by Alexander Brodsky.
The poets include Marina Tsvetaeva and Vladislav Khodasevich, who emigrated in the early 1920s when the working conditions for free artistic practice became restricted, as well as poets who suffered under Stalin's oppression and purges, such as Osip Mandelshtam and Daniil Kharms. Other poets lived through the purges and stood against the system, only to be quietened down and demeaned by it, such as Boris Pasternak and Anna Akhmatova. Included are also later generations of poets such as Joseph Brodsky and Natalya Gorbanevskaya who had their voices silenced by the regime and were forced to emigrate in the 1970s.
A display inside Pushkin House will continue the theme and tell stories of repressed literature in Soviet times. A rich programme of events will explore the theme in more depth through lectures, poetry readings, photographs, film screenings and concerts.
Also in the house is a small exhibition of photographs of Russian artists living in emigration today, by Vadim Levin.
Curator of the Pavilion Markus Lähteenmäki writes:
"The 101st km is a metaphor for all the involuntary farewells, punishment and displacement, exile and refuge that took place in the turmoil following the revolution and under the subsequent regimes. For poets, refuge was often found in language – emigre poets continued to write and publish in Russian and the ones living in internal exile continued to write in secret. Poetry was circulated as self-copied 'samizdat' editions or 'tamizdat' editions printed abroad and smuggled in. Brodsky’s pavilion acts as a metaphysical setting for intimate encounters with poetry. As with much of Brodsky's work the subtle architecture of the pavilion stems from the simple and mysterious possibilities of architecture as a form of art. The question of exile is a ubiquitous motif in the history of literature, and particularly so in Russia.”
Pushkin House Director Clementine Cecil writes:
“This October is the centenary of the Russian revolution, that led to the creation of Pushkin House as a place of refuge for Russians living in Britain who wished to maintain a connection to their culture. This pavilion is a celebration of the individual voice against all odds and it is a great honour to be working with Alexander Brodsky, one of the most important artists and architects in Russia today. With this pavilion, Pushkin House is coming out on to the street and engaging with a wider public. We believe that culture is the most profound and direct way for different nations to engage with each other and foster mutual understanding.”
Notes for Editors:
Alexander Brodsky is one of the most celebrated architect and artist working in Russia today. His works are kept in major collections and museums, including: Museum of Modern Art, New York, State Russian Museum, St. Petersburg, Deutches Architekturmuseum, Frankfurt am Main, Victoria and Albert Museum, London and Tate Modern, London, where his etchings were on permanent display in their own room 2015–2016. In 2010 the artist was awarded the Kandinsky Prize – Russia’s leading art prize. Brodsky has built pavilions in many major European cities including Paris and Venice. This is his first pavilion in London, and is the first architect-built pavilion on Bloomsbury Square.
Pushkin House is the UK's oldest independent Russian cultural centre. An independent charity, it was founded in 1954 in a house in Notting Hill by two generations of Russian émigrés, their aim was to create a welcoming meeting-place: ‘for the enjoyment, understanding and promotion of Russian culture in all its forms, and for the exchange of views in a lively, informal atmosphere, with freedom of speech a core principle’.
Markus Lähteenmäki is a fellow of the Institute for the History and Theory of Architecture (gta) at ETH Zurich, where he pursues a PhD related to Russian avant-garde poetry and architecture. He received an MA from London’s Courtauld Institute in 2013 after first studying at the universities of Helsinki and Moscow. He worked as a curator for Drawing Matter Trust in the UK for two years in which role he co-curated critically acclaimed exhibitions at Hauser & Wirth Somerset and the Swiss Architecture Museum in Basel. He has taught history at the Cass, London Metropolitan University, Royal College of Art and Central Saint Martins in London and continues to work as a co-organiser of public and educational programmes at the New Academy in Helsinki, is an editor-at-large for the Helsinki based publisher Garret Books and an independent curator.
The pavilion is being supported by Vadim Levin.
Executive architect support from Robin Partington & Partners.
Fabrication and construction support from Patera Engineering Ltd.
In collaboration with Bloomsbury Festival
Additional Support from Drawing Matter Trust
Alexander Brodsky: 101st km - Further Everywhere opens on 18 October at 6.30 pm as part of Bloomsbury Festival which runs 18-22 October.
The pavilion and exhibition are open 11am-dusk every day 19 October - 10 November. Free entry.
Pushkin House presents a series of accompanying events:
7pm, 19 October 2017- KEEP MY WORDS FOREVER
Screening of film about the life and fate of poet Osip Mandelstam, that combines animation, puppet theatre, and documentary. Followed by a discussion with its director Roma Liberov. In Russian with English subtitles. Q&A in English. READ MORE & BOOK
6.30pm, 20 October 2017 - ARCHITECTURE OF THE IMAGINATION: CREATIVITY IN EXILE DURING THE SOVIET PERIOD
A talk organised with the Architectural Association. With Andres Kurg, Visiting Professor at the Institute of Art History, Estonian Academy of Arts in Tallinn, Tom Cubbin, Senior Lecturer in Design Studies at the Academy of Design and Craft in Gothenburg, Sweden, curator of the pavilion by Alexander Brodsky 101st km - Further Everywhere - Markus Lähteenmäki, and Clementine Cecil, Director of Pushkin House. The talk will focus on the theme of creative practice in exile – from architects and artists who emigrated from Russia following the revolution, to architects of the avant-garde who poured their energy into fantastical designs for private consumption only, and the “unofficial” and paper practices of the 1970s and 80s. Please note, this event will take place at the Architectural Assocation, 36 Bedford Square, London WC1B 3ES, 020 7887 4000. This is a free event with no booking. READ MORE
7pm, 21 October 2017 - BRIGITTE SUBKOV PLAYS PROKOFIEV
Pushkin House has the pleasure of introducing Brigitte Subkov a talented young pianist from St. Petersburg. She will be giving a commemorative piano recital on the theme of Composers in Exile, as part of our series of events connected to the pavilion by Alexander Brodsky - 101st km - Further Everywhere. She will be playing a programme of Rachmaninov, Scriabin and Prokofiev. READ MORE & BOOK
4pm, 22 October 2017 - RUSSIAN COMPOSERS IN EXILE: A CELLO & PIANO RECITAL
Cellist Alexey Sarkissov and pianist Alexander Karpeyev present a programme of Russian classical composers, who were suppressed during the Communist regime or had to leave the country altogether. The programme includes Grechaninov’s rarely-performed Sonata for cello and piano, Stravinsky’s Suite Italienne and the dramatic sonata by Shostakovich written months before his music was condemned by the Soviet government. READ MORE & BOOK
7pm, 25 October 2017 - THE TRAGEDY OF THE RUSSIAN POET WITH ROBERT CHANDLER, MARKUS LÄHTEENMÄKI AND CLEMENTINE CECIL
During the Soviet era, poetry became a dangerous, subversive activity. This discussion between leading translator of Russian poetry Robert Chandler, curator of Pushkin House pavilion 101st km: Further Everywhere, Markus Lähteenmäki, and Pushkin House Director Clementine Cecil, will explore the lives, fate and work of Soviet poets who lived in internal exile or who emigrated. In English. READ MORE & BOOK
7pm, 31 October 2017 - LIVING WITH AKHMATOVA AND TSVETAEVA, A TALK WITH POETS & TRANSLATORS SASHA DUGDALE, MONIZA ALVI & VERONIKA KRASNOV
Translators and poets Sasha Dugdale, Moniza Alvi and Veronika Krasnova discuss the experience of translating Anna Akhmatova, Marina Tsvetaeva, Natalya Gorbanevskaya and
other Russian poets, and explore the influence of these poets on their own poetry. In collaboration with Modern Poetry in Translation. In English. READ MORE & BOOK
5pm, 4 November 2017 - TALK AND POETRY RECITAL WITH MARIA STEPANOV
Pushkin House is delighted to present leading poet, essayist and journalist Maria Stepanova as part of our season: 101st km - Further Everywhere, marking the centenary of the Russian revolution with a pavilion on Bloomsbury Square dedicated to the fate of suppressed Soviet poets and celebrating their voices. Before giving a reading of her own poetry, Stepanova will give a short talk about suppressed and persecuted poets in Soviet Russia and their influence on her own poetry. In collaboration with Modern Poetry in Translation. In English and Russian. READ MORE & BOOK
7pm, 6 November 2017 -POETRY RECITAL: 101ST KM - THE FATE OF RUSSIAN POETS/ПОЭТИЧЕСКИЙ ВЕЧЕР: 101-Й КМ - УЧАСТЬ РУССКИХ ПОЭТОВ
An evening dedicated to poetry written by Russian poets who were persecuted during the Soviet era. It will include poems by poets who were imprisoned, forced into exile or executed, who perished in prison or prison-camp or who were silenced or denounced by the Soviet regime. In English and Russian. READ MORE AND BOOK
7pm, 8 November 2017 - TALK AND POETRY RECITAL WITH YEVGENIYA LAVUT
Pushkin House is delighted to present leading poet and essayist Yevgeniya Lavut, who will talk about Russian poetry today, including experiments in fusing poetry and theatre, poetry and video art. Followed by a recital of her own poetry. In English and Russian. EVENT TO GO LIVE LATER THIS WEEK
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