Canons and Thresholds by Provmyza Group and Volnye prostory project


From 14 June 2017




Garage Screen summer cinema
Canons and Thresholds by Provmyza Group and Volnye prostory projectCanons and Thresholds by Provmyza Group and Volnye prostory project


Provmyza—Sergey Provorov and Galina Myznikova—is among the most unusual art groups on the Russian art scene, their works (many have been shown at the world’s biggest exhibitions and film festivals) blending the languages of experimental cinema and video, opera, theatre, performance and installation.

Canons and Thresholds is a work of visual anthropology offering an analysis of filmic language—affective and full of ambivalent images in the group’s case—and a complex body of concepts associated with Russian traditional culture. The film was made in collaboration with the young artists who attended Provmyza’s course Volnye prostory in Nizhny Novgorod.

According to the artists, Canons and Thresholds refers us to the image of the grotesque body—one of important images of traditional culture that blends the high and the low. The naked body (the film’s protagonist is a naked man walking on stilts) is sublime and humiliated at the same time, and putting it on display means going beyond indecency and shame. As the film progresses, its language evolves, leaving the territory of ‘primitive farce for a contemporary art exploration of human body one can find in actionism and performance.’ The viewer’s anticipation of the subject’s suffering eliminates the possibility of empathy between the author and the spectator.

Canons and Thresholds premiered at the Media Forum of the 36th Moscow International Film Festival in 2014. Garage Screen is showing a new version of the film. The screening will be followed by a discussion with the authors of the film and special guests: curators and researches Olga Shishko and Karina Karaeva.

Canons and Thresholds

Provmyza Group and Volnye prostory project. Russia, 2015–2017. 45 min.



Provmyza Group (Formed in 1998) make experimental films and performances, photographic and sound projects, and video installations. Exhibitions include: the 51st Venice Biennale (Russian Pavilion, 2005), the 25th Viper Festival (Basel, 2006), Hors Pistes (Centre Pompidou, Paris, 2012), Rencontres Internationales (Palais de Tokyo, Paris, 2012), the 1st Montevideo Biennial (2012) and the 15th WRO Media Art Biennale (Wrocław, 2013); Their films have competed at festivals, including the 67th Venice Film Festival (Horizons program, 2010). They have been awarded the Innovation Prize for Best Work of Visual Art (Russia, 2013), the Pop-Mekhanika Prize at the Sergey Kuryokhin Awards (Russia, 2010), the Tiger Prize for a short film at the 38th International Film Festival Rotterdam (Netherlands, 2009), and first prize at the Asolo Art Film Festival (Italy, 2006). Members live and work in Nizhny Novgorod.

Members: Galina Myznikova (born 1968, Gorky, now Nizhny Novogorod) and Sergey Provorov (born 1970, Gorky, now Nizhny Novgorod).

Volnye prostory is an art collective that has formed around the video art course of the same name, organized by Galina Myznikova and Sergey Provorov in Nizhny Novogorod in 2012. Debut films by the course participants were featured at the 2morrow Festival of contemporary independent film in Moscow in 2014.

Participants: Evgenia Shlivko, Dmitry Stepanov, Andrey Nosov, Anna Tolkacheva.

how to take part

Free admission with advance registration