The Action exhibition


From 27 November 2014




Lecture by Sasha Obukhova

Sasha Obukhova
Thursday, November 27, 7.30 – 9.00 pm
Thursday, December 4, 7.00 – 8.30 pm
Garage Education Center
Free admission

In Moscow Conceptualist circles, the early 1980s mark the rise of a new form of collective exhibition that would gradually come to replace traditional apartment-based shows. The "action exhibition" involved a complete change of scenery, rejecting conventional exhibiting methods in favor of fundamentally new contexts. 

Literally anything could serve as an exhibiting space: the city streets or a café, the seat of a chair or an open field. The action exhibition was intended as an intrusion into the public space, as well as a way of reassessing the very concept of the exhibition. Throughout the 1990s, for example, action exhibition locations included the Butirskaya prison, the Moscow Zoo, the open Dvortsovy drawbridge in St. Petersburg, a canteen, the freezers at the Ice-Fili cold storage facility, the Sandun bathhouse, and the bottom of the Moscow swimming pool.

Sasha Obukhova's lecture on the action exhibition, a form of performance art in its own right, touches upon the above themes and more, accompanied by rare photographs and videos courtesy of Garage Archive.

Sasha Obukhova is an art historian and Head of Garage Archive and Library. She has held positions at the Institute of Contemporary Art, the State Tretyakov Gallery, and the National Center for Contemporary Art. In 2004 she became a founding member and director of the Art Projects Fund, where she established ACRA (the Archive of Contemporary Russian Art).


1. APTART 1st Show.
Apartment of Nikita Alexeev, Moscow
September 1982.
Photograph D-296 by Georgiy Kizevalter

2. Exhibition in Hell or Exhibition for the Upper and Lower Worlds
Orekhovo-Borisovo park,
November 1987 – May 1988