January 23, 2013


Did you see the interview with Liza? She talks about the 'Zaporozhet' of her grandfather.

December 1, 2012

The Bright Future Ahead_The Bright Future Behind Us

Exhibition booklet not near at hand? Here you find the text linked to this theme.

In order to establish the new Soviet state in the largely illiterate country of Russia, it was important to convince people that it was better to join this new order. Many extensive and isolated areas had been left to their fate for centuries and the people who lived there had developed an almost instinctive suspicion of any form of officialdom. The communist party established a separate department to win the hearts and minds for their ideology: the department for agitation and propaganda. Because of the enormous area covered by the Soviet Union, there were soon many Agitprop trains to spread the new ideology. The train stopped at every place along the railway line to distribute the propaganda material, posters, folders and books. There were also travelling theatre companies who presented the new values in their productions. Mayakovsky, the poet of the revolution, travelled all over the country to read his work. Rosta, the first Soviet press agency, was an important link in this propaganda. In 1928 Lissitzky was commissioned to design and organize the international press exhibition for the Soviet exposition in Cologne. An international public was to see how the new state was spreading its news and propaganda to its furthest corners. Instead of building their own pavilion, the Soviets rented the existing central pavilion of the stock exchange building where they screened non-stop films, news flashes and cartoons in a very dynamic environment. Lissitzky was extremely successful with this “propaganda for the Soviet propaganda”. One reviewer wrote: “Everything moves, turns and everything is full of energy.” The exhibition shows a reconstruction of one of Lissitzky’s designs. The Kabakovs made a reconstruction of an Agitprop railway carriage where you can hear revolutionary Soviet songs. This installation is named after the paintings which can be seem in the carriage: Let’s Go Girls!

Van Abbemuseum


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