We and the Others. Igor Zabel

I / The Other’s Other

As the starting point, I will simply use the title of the conference: “We and the Others.1 The phrase seems to be simple and symmetrical; but as soon as one reads the subtitle (“Russian Artists in the West—Western Artists in Russia”), it becomes clear that the relationship between “us” and “the others” is far from being balanced and equivalent. The title indicates that the contemporary world is basically determined by the experience of “otherness”; in such a world, Russian art is confronted by many “others,” such as the art of the Far East (China, Japan), of the Islamic world, of Latin America, and Africa, to mention just a few areas where one can observe considerable artistic activity in recent years. However, the title does not refer to these “others,” but to one very special “Other”: to the West, the Western art world. (Texto completo)

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