NEWSWATCH: “Obama Signs Law That Could Reopen Cultural Exchange with #Russia; Russia’s major museums have not lent artworks to the US since 2011.” – Artnet News/Alyssa Buffenstein

Hermitage Museum

A new law signed … grants foreign states immunity from US jurisdiction in cases related to the temporary exhibition of loaned artworks …. Despite current tensions between Obama and … Putin – and opposition to the bill from groups like the Holocaust Art Restitution Project – the Foreign Cultural Exchange Jurisdictional Immunity Clarification Act could mean the renewing of cultural […]

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RUSSIALINK RBTH: “Cultural figures stand up for artistic freedom in Russia”

Kremlin and Saint Basil's File Photo

Prominent figures from Russia’s art world are accusing the state of reintroducing censorship following a series of high-profile scandals in which conservative groups have forced the closure of exhibitions and performances. The state replies that it has the right to influence the contents of an artistic creation if it was commissioned by the government

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The Westernization of Higher Education in Russia: Novosibirsk State University and its Students 1992-2016: Part 2: The Students

Bookcase file photo, adapted from image at nlm.nih.gov

Subject: The Westernization of Higher Education in Russia: Novosibirsk State University and its Students 1992-2016: Part 2: The Students Date: Tue, 26 Jul 2016 10:59:20 +0700 From: Sarah Lindemann-Komarova <echosiberia@gmail.com> The Westernization of Higher Education in Russia: Novosibirsk State University and its Students 1992-2016: Part 2: The Students By Sarah Lindemann-Komarova Founder, Siberian Civic Initiatives Support Center 1995 – 2014. […]

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The Museum of Russian Impressionism Opens in Moscow

Aerial View of Moscow From Beyond Stadium, file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Ruth Moore – June 3, 2016) [Photos here themoscowtimes.com/arts_n_ideas/article/the-museum-of-russian-impressionism-opens-in-moscow/571161.html] Moscow just got a new museum. The Museum of Russian Impressionism is the first major private art museum to open in the capital, and its founder and curators hope to do nothing less than revolutionize the world’s knowledge of art history. The new museum, which features […]

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Moscow’s Chief Architect Envisions the City’s Future

Aerial View of Moscow From Beyond Stadium, file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Lena Vanina – April 29, 2016) [Photos here themoscowtimes.com/business/article/moscows-chief-architect-envisions-the-citys-future/567455.html] For many years, Triumfalnaya Ploshchad was a nondescript square across from Moscow’s beating heart. It was an occasional meeting point for anti-regime protesters, a space to get across to reach somewhere else. Today, however, it is an example of modern design, a beautifully lit Scandinavian oasis […]

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Russian Orthodox Activists Who Vandalized Manezh Face Criminal Charges

Kremlin and Saint Basil's File Photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Anna Dolgov – September 15, 2015) Investigators have opened a criminal case against a group of radical Orthodox activists who attacked Moscow’s Manezh exhibition center last month. The suspected attackers from the ultra-conservative group “God’s Will” could face criminal prosecution for the “destruction or damage of cultural property,” Interior Ministry spokesman Andrei Galiakberov was cited […]

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Putin’s ‘New People’ are the Black Hundreds of Today, Golts Says

Map of Russia and Russian Flag adapted from images at state.gov

(Paul Goble – Windows on Eurasia – Staunton, August 22, 2015) Vladimir Putin’s “new people,” the lumpen who are prepared to take the law into their own hands in the name of advancing the goals of the Kremlin leader that they think are being undermined by the bureaucracy and oligarchs, are the exact equivalent of the Black Hundreds that carried […]

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Russian Press Digest (17 August 2015)

(opendemocracy.net – EDITORS OF OPENDEMOCRACY RUSSIA) This Monday, the Russian press reports on the import ban on foreign medicines, Rosneft’s taxes, and an attack by Orthodox activists on a Moscow sculpture exhibition. Kommersant opens with an article on new plans to ban imports of a range of medical products. Several large NGOs, including Vera and Podari zhizn, involved in medical […]

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Russia Takes On Louvre, Guggenheim as Putin Fights Pariah Status

Hermitage Museum

(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Henry Meyer – August 9, 2015) Since it opened in March, the Russian Museum in Malaga, the southern Spanish coastal resort, has been thronged by visitors who line up to see centuries-old icons and works by 20th century avant-garde artists Wassily Kandinsky, Kazimir Malevich and Marc Chagall. The St. Petersburg landmark’s only foreign branch is part […]

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NEWSWATCH AFP: The changing face of Russia’s emblematic matryoshka dolls

AFP reports on Russia’s evolving matryoshka nesting dolls. From cheery peasant girls in Tsarist times to Soviet-era cosmonauts to today’s Pussy Riots, the changing face of Russia’s matryoshka nesting dolls reflects the country’s tumultuous history. Click here for AFP: “The changing face of Russia’s emblematic matryoshka dolls”

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Dasha Zhukova: Russian Public Now Less Skeptical About Contemporary Art

Map of Russia and Russian Flag adapted from images at state.gov

(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Lili Rosboch – June 12, 2015) The founder of Moscow’s Garage Museum of Contemporary Art speaks on the occasion of its grand re-opening, and discusses politics, the ruble, and Russia’s approach to experimental work Founded in 2008 by art autodidact Dasha Zhukova, Moscow’s Garage Museum of Contemporary Art is the first philanthropic institution in Russia with […]

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Ferapontov Monastery

Ferapontov Monastery file photo, adapted from wikimedia commons image at http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Ferapontov_Monastery_020509.jpg, posted by Enotovidnii

Subject: Ferapontov Monastery Date: Tue, 12 Aug 2014 From: William Brumfield <william.brumfield@gmail.com> My current article for Russia beyond the Headlines is devoted to the radiant frescoes created at  in 1502 by the artist Dionisy and his two sons. The monastery and its frescoes are on the UNESCO World Heritage list: rbth.com/travel/2014/08/08/ferapontov_monastery_sublime _beauty_in_the_russian_north_38893.html For best results with the slide show (full […]

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Few Russian Artists Bother to Fight Creeping Trend of Censorship

Kremlin and Saint Basil's File Photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – John Freedman – June 23, 2014) As we approach July 1, the day after which obscenities will officially be banned in Russian art, the Russian creative community is doing what it can to make sense of a concerted push on the part of the government to regulate the arts and artistic expression. By writing the […]

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Russia’s got talent: The making of the nation’s future musicians and artists

Sheet Music in the Midst of Artist's Outline of Human Head and Brain

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Marina Obrazkova, RBTH – June 1, 2014) There are more than 5,000 music and art schools in modern Russia. Here children can learn to play different instruments and master the basics of painting or sculpture practically free of charge, in addition to their regular education. Teaching staff note that such a system remains […]

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Local Promoter Speaks Out Against Boycotts

Map of Commonwealth of Independent States, European Portion

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Sergey Chernov – May 13, 2014) With a growing number of Western artists boycotting Russia in protest of its annexation of Crimea and destabilization in southeastern Ukraine, a St. Petersburg concert promoter has spoken out against their actions, saying that these musicians are only hurting fans. Ilya Bortnyuk, whose agency Light Music has brought many […]

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Kiev History Museum Looted During Night of Chaos

Ukraine Map and Flag

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – D. Garrison Golubock – February 20, 2014) The holdings of the Kiev History Museum were looted by unknown intruders during the night of Feb. 18-19, museum management said, Art Ukraine reported. “The first thing we saw, entering one of the vaults, was an 18th century ikon of the holy apostles wrapped in a brocade dress […]

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The Artistic Community Responds to Events in Kiev

Maidan Square file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – John Freedman – January 27, 2014) When the going gets tough, as we have seen repeatedly in recent years, the tough take to Facebook. At least that’s what they do in this part of the world. So it has been with the events in Kiev – call them protests or call them a revolution in […]

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Body-conscience Russians a lot like Europeans

Kremlin and St. Basil's

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Marina Obrazkova, RBTH – January 1, 2014) Russians are traditionally viewed as being harsh and unconcerned about their bodies, but it turns out that this is far from reality. Russians reacted vehemently when the artist Pyotr Pavlensky nailed his genitals to a cobblestone in Moscow’s Red Square in an act of protest last […]

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Russian Village Reformer Granted Parole

Map of Russia

MOSCOW, December 31 (RIA Novosti) ­ A former painter from Moscow, whose quest to bring culture to provincial villagers resulted in a jail term for bribery, was granted parole on Tuesday. The Tver Region Court upheld a parole request filed by 36-year-old Ilya Farber, who had already spent two years and nine months behind bars. Farber left Moscow for the […]

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The art of Russian politics; Russia’s top politicians­ – including Putin­ – are avid artists, whose paintings and photographs have fetched millions at an annual St. Petersburg charity auction.

Kremlin and St. Basil's file photo

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru –  Dmitriy Romendik, RBTH – November 16, 2013) As the chair of Russia’s Upper Parliament and a former governor of St. Petersburg, Valentina Matvienko, is more than just the country’s most well-known female politician. To some, she is considered the best female artist among all of Russia’s politicians. Matvienko’s oil paintings have become regulars […]

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Killing Irony with Ivan the Terrible and an Orthodox Activist

Kremlin and St. Basil's

(RIA Novosti – Natalia Antonova, Acting Editor-in-Chief, The Moscow News, October 8, 2013) Ivan the Terrible lived a long time ago and the passage of time does distort historical figures ­ so that the truth is sometimes hard to separate from fiction. Still, it is probably safe to say that Ivan the Terrible was not a fan of pluralism and […]

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Protest Movement Inspires a Flood of Anti-Kremlin Art

Moscow Protest file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Oleg Sukhov – April 8, 2013) “Do you dare come to the square where the regiments are waiting … between the Senate and Synod?” These lines, though written by Russian poet Alexander Galich in 1968 about the Decembrist revolt of 1825 on St. Petersburg’s Senatskaya Ploshchad, express the spirit of the art inspired by Russia’s […]

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