Hanna Smith
hanna.smith [at] helsinki.fi

Tuomas Forsberg
tuomas.forsberg [at] helsinki.fi

Conference secretary
Maarit Elo-Valente
maarit.elo-valente [at] helsinki.fi

Conference Intern
Ville Tuppurainen
ville.tuppurainen [at] helsinki.fi

Concerence e-mail:
fcree-aleksconf [at] helsinki.fi

The Aleksanteri Institute

Unioninkatu 33 (P.O. Box 42)
00014 University of Helsinki
phone +358-(0)9-191 23642
fax +358-(0)9-191 23615

aleksanteri [at] helsinki.fi


Engström, Maria

Eurasian Empire in Contemporary Russian Art

Post-Soviet imperial conservatism is an extremely eclectic and contradictory amalgam of traditionalism, Soviet nostalgia and radicalism. The return to Stalinist aesthetics and reassessment of the Soviet period have become a massive phenomenon in Russia, which can be explained by different factors, for instance, the strengthened role of the state during Putin’s terms as president and the need of seductive and mass appealing political imagery. The neoconservative discourse that emerged in the late Soviet period in the midst of the Moscow and Petersburg non-conformist underground is today in the process of becoming the ideological mainstream. One example of contemporary imperial art is the work of Alexey Beliayev-Guintovt (b. 1965), who has been the art designer of the Neo-Eurasian movement since 2002 and became famous in 2008 as a winner of the Kandinsky Prize, the most important award for contemporary art in Russia. I will talk about his projects ”Novonovosibirsk” from 2000 and “New Moscow” from 2010 in which he is offering an heterotopic vision of a new capital of Eurasian Empire.