Necessary Art


From 20 September 2011 to 1 December 2011


Gorky Park


“…not the old, not the new, but the necessary.” – Vladimir Tatlin

Garage Center for Contemporary Culture and Gorky Park will launch a project entitled Necessary Art, which brings together eleven contemporary Russian artists to create specially commissioned works of ‘public art’. Each of the works – to be placed in and around one of the historic pavilions in Gorky Park, Moscow – will invite the public to engage with art in a new way. The artists’ ideas take different forms – from interventions in the landscape, to performance, to alternative sculpture. Every work encourages public interaction, either conceptually or physically, and they all present experimentalism in the park environment.

The project was inspired by a well-known statement by Vladimir Tatlin concerning the role of art. Tatlin was central to the birth of Russian Constructivism, creating objects that were both sculpture and architecture. He has come to define the spirit of avant-gardism in the 20th century, the attempt to bring art to the service of everyday life. Much of Tatlin's work shows a desire to abolish the traditional representational function of art and put it to new, more practical uses, ultimately to serve the goals of Russia's Communist revolution. These ideas continue to be relevant today, and they have inspired Garage to allow art to actively serve everyday life in Moscow, to be accessible to everyone in the park.

The project curator Yulia Aksenova asked: “Should artists be given freedom of expression; and if so, what are the social and political statements that should be voiced from this platform and within the public sphere as a whole? How can we create art that engages a new generation of artists to create new ideas?”

Download press release (doc)