Friday, January 24, 2014
Soviet art and sport
What was it about sport that so fascinated Russian artists such as Stepanova, Klucis and Rodchenko that it graced their artistic endeavours? This intriguing question is the underlying theme of an exhibition that looks at how sport was portrayed in the Soviet Union in the 1920s and 1930s through the work of avant-garde artists.
The exhibition focuses on the unlikely interest in sport shown by artists, photographers, graphic designers, film makers and poets in the Soviet Union in the 1920s and 1930s. What was it about these popular pursuits that appealed to Stepanova, Klucis or Rodchenko and others to such an extent that it influenced the practices of generations of artists?
To address this question, we need to look back to the Russian Revolution of 1917 and the birth of a society that aimed to break down barriers of class and privilege, giving everyone access to activities that had previously been out of reach. The fledgling USSR wanted to bring sport to the populace, and mass sports activities were organised in workplaces and schools. Avant-garde artists felt they had a part to play in building this new society. Many films, photos and magazines used sport as a paradigm for their views.
What began in Russia led to similar developments in other countries. Applied arts such as photography, film and graphic design began portraying sport, competition, achievement and physical effort in entirely new ways, profoundly changing the way people viewed the body and the human element. The exhibition aims to shed light on these new conceptions by comparing and contrasting a variety of works across time and space.
• 26 January at 2.30 p.m. (Entrance hall, level.0)
• Focus on cinema, with exhibition commissioner Professor François Albera
• 16 February at 2.30 p.m. (Entrance hall, level 0)
• Focus on photography, with art historian Daniel Girardi
• 20 February at 6.30 p.m. (Galerie, level +2)
• The 1928 Spartakiad in Moscow and the international dissemination of an athletic image of Soviet society, by Professor André Gounot of Strasbourg University.
• Sport in the daily life of the USSR, by Sylvain Dufraisse, history teacher
During the exhibition, cycle of Russian films shown at the Cinémathèque suisse (Lausanne) - (dates tbd)
T: +41 21 621 60 00
Quai d'Ouchy 1 - Lausanne
- 09 a.m. to 6 p.m.: from 1 May to 19 October (daily)
- 10 a.m. to 6 p.m: from 20 October to 30 April (Tuesday to Sunday) closed on Mondays (except Easter Monday or for special events), 25 December and 1 January
The Museum entry is free until 24 January 2014