In Transition Russia 2008

In 1989, Carole Kismaric published the book “Forced Out: The Agony of The Refugee In Our Time”, which was also a monumental travelling exhibition. It was a most effective reflection on displaced persons, integrating images and text that gave testimony to the aftermath of famine and war at that time. The exhibition was composed of larger than life photographs of displaced people printed on film so that not only was the viewer dwarfed by the images and text, but the transparent images produced haunting slightly moving shadows on the wall behind the hanging film. The impact of the work was all the more palpable because of the inclusion of text by people who experienced a cataclysm.

Since that book and exhibition were produced, much has changed. At this historic moment we are more aware of global changes than any other time in history because of the acceleration of these changes as well as communication systems that inform and connect us with peoples around the world.

This exhibition is the second “In Transition” exhibition and symposium. The first was held in Limassol, Cyprus, during October 2006, organized by NeMe, an independent arts organization based in Limassol, Cyprus and presented by the Independent Museum of Contemporary Art (IMCA). The curators and initiators of the project, Helene Black and Sheila Pinkel planned the exhibition so that in addition to specific international artists who were invited to participate, artists from all over the world were invited via an open call on the internet, to submit images and text which reflected on the realities of displacement. Artists from 37 countries participated in this exhibition.

The project changes as it repeats, and in this case, “In Transition Russia 2008” includes a substantial representation from artists who live and work in the Russian Federation as well as from the surrounding region. Many of these artists were selected by NCCA (Ekaterinburg) director and curator, Alisa Prudnikova and curator Ksenia Federova. The NeMe project takes place at the National Centre for Contemporary Art (NCCA) in Russia, Ekaterinburg and Moscow branches. Concurrently, a three day international conference, “In Transition: Cultural Identities in the Age of Transnational and Transcultural Flux,” is being organized and hosted by the Ural State Gorky University and the Academy of Contemporary Art, Ekaterinburg. In addition, “Drift”, a video program, curated by NeMe invited New York based artist, curator and cofounder of Perpetual Art Machine [PAM], Lee Wells, will also feature a substantial international contribution to issues concerning contemporary displacement.

Again in 2007/08, NeMe placed an international open call for artworks on the internet which resulted in the inclusion of many works reflecting the rhizomatic nature of different experiences relating to personal displacement. This exhibition also features time based as well as static works and installations by internationally recognized artists and academics committed to articulating vital global issues. Altogether, “In Transition Russia 2008” includes the works of over 125 artists representing 43 countries.

It is only through dialogue and exchange that we can better understand one another. We hope that the work of artists from around the world, reflecting on transitions of importance to them – war, famine, environmental change, economic change, geopolitical change, change in relationships with one another, change in consciousness – combine to create a vehicle for the collective voice to be recorded, heard and become part of local and international dialogue in behalf of increased tolerance and agency.

As a parallel event to the exhibition, the international conference IN TRANSITION: Cultural Identities in the Age of Transnational and Transcultural Flux has been organised by the Ural State University named after A. M. Gorky, the Ekaterinburg Academy of Contemporary Art, and NeMe (Cyprus).

We would like you to watch this NeMe produced video, presenting footage of the exhibition at the National Centre of Contemporary Art in Moscow uploaded on
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Participating Artists

33+1 (RU), Robert Adanto (US), AES+F Group (RU), Tatiana Akhmetgalieva (RU), Carlos Amorales (MX), Tatyana Badanina (RU), Perry Bard (US), Helene Black (CY), Jeremy Blake (US), Oleg Blyablyas (RU), Chris Borkowski (US), Marina Chernikova (RU/NL), Chto Delat (RU), Yiannos Economou (CY), Escape Program (RU), Cao Fei (CN), Yevgeniy Fiks (RU/US), Adonis Florides (CY), Ilya Gaponov (RU), Constantinos Hadjidemetri (CY/ES), Jeremy Hight (US), Stewart Home (GB), Srećko Horvat (HR), Viktoria Ilyushkina (RU), Deborah Kelly (AU), Maria Lianou (CY), Anton Litvin (RU), Olga Lovtzus (RU), Peter Lyssiotis (CY/AU), Diana Machulina (RU), Christina McPhee (US), Vladimir Nasedkin (RU), Lefteris Olympios (CY/NL), [PAM] Perpetual Art Machine (US), Sheila Pinkel (US), Kirill Preobrazhenskiy (RU), Provmyza (RU), Sonya Rapoport (US), Igor Sacharow – Ross (RU/DE), Second Front Int (US), Vladimir Seleznev (RU), Masha Sha (RU/US), Giorgos Sisamos (CY), Christiana Solomou (CY), Sylvia de Swaan (RO/US), Mark Tribe (US), Lee Wells (US), Where The Dogs Run (RU), Shaun Wilson (AU), Mehmet Yashin (CY/GB), O Zhang (CN/US), Zory (IR/GB), Lanfranco Aceti (IT/GB), Monira Al-Qadiri (KW/JP), Mohammed Ali (SY), Anya Belyat-Giunta (RU/ US/FR), Shanon Benine (US), Orit Ben-Shitrit + Harold Moss (IL/US + US), Alena Boika (BY/CZ), Dineo Bopape (ZA), Nisrine Boukhari (SY), Adam Buczek (PO/GB), Simon Chang (TW/CZ), Elly Clarke (GB), Vesna Črnivec (SI), Caterina Davinio (IT), Natalie Demetriou (CY), Michael Dettmer (DE/CY), Ted Efremoff (RU/US), Nils Emde + Nico 31 (DE), Othman Fekraoui (MA), Tijana Pakic-Feterman (CS/FR), Tatiana Fiodorova (MD), Christopher M. Gauthiér (US), Alan Gignoux (FR/GB), Manuel Gil + Oscar Gil (US/GB), Green Art Halikonlahti (FI), Diane Guyot (FR), Myriam Hammani (DZ/ FR), Bjørn Erik Haugen (NO), Matan Israeli (IL), Cecilia Järdemar (SE/GB), Annetta Kapon (GR/US), Mihyun Kim (KR/US), Paul Klein (US), Elvis Krstulovic (HR), Diana Larrea (ES), Sally Grizzell Larson (US), Yael Lepek (IL/MX), Natalia Lopez (CO/FR), Eleana Louka (CY/GB), Katerina Mistal (CZ/SE), Diomides Nikitas (CY), Sara Nuytemans (NL), Leah Oates (US), Damir Očko (HR), Karina Pais (EC/US), Tonia Papaiacovou (CY), Stefanos Pavlakis (GR/GB), Sara Rahbar (IR/US), Aviva Rahmani (US) , Vasile Rata (MD/RO), Pavel Romaniko (RU/US), Lizabeth Eva Rossof (US), Krisztina Rozanich (HU), Mark Salvatus (PH), Dana Sederowsky (SE), Pei-Chun Shih (TW), Guli Silberstein (IL), Linda Sim (SE/AT/AU), Kally Sozou (ZA/CY), Barbara Sturm (CH), Waltraut Taenzler (DE), Nicole Tammelleo (US), Lois Chichinoff Thadei (US), Dia Theodorou (CY), Elina Theodotou (CY), Marios Theophilides (CY), William Titley (GB), Satoru Toma (JP/BE), Anna-Marya Tompa (GB), Lien Truong (VN/US), Yiorgos Tsalamanis (GR/GB), Nana Varveropoulou (GR/GB), Gabriele Voehringer (DE), Jasenka Vukelic (HR), Emma Wilcox (US), Zhuang Wubin (SG), Guzman de Yarza Blanche (ES), Katia Yezli (FR)

IN TRANSITION: Cultural Identities in the Age of Transnational and Transcultural Flux

As a parallel event to the exhibition, the international conference “IN TRANSITION: Cultural Identities in the Age of Transnational and Transcultural Flux” has been organised by the Ural State University named after A. M. Gorky, the Ekaterinburg Academy of Contemporary Art and NeMe.

We would like you to watch these NeMe produced videos uploaded on Vimeo, presenting a selection of 20 talks delivered in English: Helene Black, Sheila Pinkel, Helene Black, Lee Wells, Lanfranco Aceti, George Alexander, Peter Lyssiotis, Michael Haerdter, Srećko Horvat, Jeremy Hight, Annetta Kapon, Susan Barnet, Christos Barboutis, Elina Viljanen, Dana Sederowsky, Vesna Črnivec, Helene Black, Adonis Florides, Leo Granberg, and Alan Gignoux.
By viewing them here, you accept Vimeo's privacy policy.

View them here

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Conference participants:

  • Chair: Professor Sergei Kropotov, Director, Academy of Contemporary Art, Ekaterinburg, Russia
  • Keynote Speakers:
    • Dr Michael Haerdter (DE): “On modernism and its continuous impact on the world in flux”
    • Dr Galina Zvereva (RU): “Discourse of positive national identity in contemporary Russia”
    • Dr. Yiannis Papadakis (CY): “The Politics of Place, Space and Displacement in Divided Cyprus”
    • Dr Sergey Kropotov (RU): “Can the displaced speak?”
    • George Alexander (AU): “Remaking Cosmopolitanism”
    • Dr Victor Voronkov (RU): “A unique case of hybridization – homo soveticus”
    • Peter Lyssiotis (CY/AU): “I Make Books”
    • Dr Lanfranco Aceti (IT/UK): “War Shaped Identities: Destruction as Cultural Inheritance.”
    • Dmitry Bulatov (RU): “Techno-biological Hybridization and Contemporary Art”
    • Dr Christos Barboutis (GR/CY): “The displacement of the meaning of the ‘local’ in Russian media: Back to the future.”
    • Jeremy Hight (US): “Reconsidering Maps and Time: Immersive Event, Time and Global Interface”
    • Srećko Horvat (HR): “Banksy against Dystopia”
    • Oleg Reut RU: “Sovereignty: all ban”
    • Alan Gignoux (US/ UK): “Homeland Lost”
  • Parallel Sessions
    • Panel 1
      • Beloysov Sergey (RU): “Identity of the Russian State – peculiarity of transformation” Rodion Brekhach (Ru): “Social Cultural issues of migration: case studies from Perm region”
      • Elena Golovneva (RU): “Political myth as a an instrument of transmission of the ethnic identity concept.”
      • Ekaterina Taratuta (RU): “The City of War and Evacuation: the Siberian Beginning”
      • Valentina Kardapoltseva (RU): “«Judge complex» as a feeling of guilt in the personal identification model.”
      • Bulat Muratov (RU): “Traditional culture and economy of China, Japan and South Korea as a method of effective development of the national concept of Russia.”
      • Alexandra Torochov (RU): “Crosscultural practices of social inclusion.”
      • Elena Trubina (RU): “Non-Governmental Discourses on Migration and Mobility in Russia’s New Media.”
      • Natalia Schubina (Ru): “Educational strategies of tolerance developing in diaological space of polyethnic societies.”
      • Leo Granberg and Osva Annu (FI): “Russian Transition in the Eyes of Yakutian Cattle.”
    • Panel 2
      • Elina Viljanen (FI) :“O Narodnoi Muzyke – Transcultural Identity of Soviet Musical Aesthetics”
      • Payman Khajavi (IR): “Culture and nationality in global civil society”
      • Natalia Agaphonova (RU): “Representation of ethnic and ethno-social uniqueness of Tatar and Bashkir communities of South Prikamie in contemporary social reality.”
      • Alexandra Kleshina (RU): “Multiculturalism as a system”
      • Igor Krasavin (RU): “Disconnected society and culture of private identifications.”
      • D. Lebedev and G. Lebedeva (RU): “Slipping identity”
      • Lyudmila Popkova (RU): “Politics of Multiculturalism and gender citizenship: feminist perspective.”
      • Olga Frolova (Ru): “Longing for identity preservation: bodily practices.”
      • Svetlana Chashina (RU): “Alternative Culture and alternative art practice: towards mechanism of development.”
      • Margarita Gudova (RU): “Chronotopos” of glamour magazines: Displacement of the Soviet existential patterns of behaviour.”
      • Lassila Jussi (FI): “Between the Discourses of Collective Didactics and Individual Stimulation: Appropriations from the semiotic repertoire of the Pro-Kremlin Youth Organizations.”
      • Marat Ismagilov and Danil Gretchko (RU): “The school space in the context of globalisation and unification.”
    • Panel 3
      • Ksenia Golovko (RU): “Jacques Ranciere’s Aesthetic Unconscious as a concept of Modern Art”
      • Anastasia Kirikova (RU): “Symbols of Consumption in Contemporary Culture.”
      • Ksenia Fedorova (RU): “Interactive Media Art and the Ethics of “Sharism”
      • Galina Orlova (RU): “Between Décor and Phantasm: Designing Europeness in the Public Space of a Southern Russian City”
      • Sofia Rassadina (RU): “Transformation of Pleasure Practices as a Symptom of Adaptive Identity.”
      • Natalia Sokolova (RU): “In Search of Identity: ‘Global’ and ‘Local’ in Russian Fan-Video”
      • Victor Radchenko (UA): “Social Networks and ‘Old’ Technologies”
      • Oksana Zaporozhets (RU) and Ekaterina Lavrinez (LT): “Dramaturgy of Fear in Urban Transitive Spaces”
  • Artist Talks:
    • Sheila Pinkel (US): “Hmong in Transition”
    • Lee Wells (US): “Supermodern – nothing is what it seems”
    • Adonis Florides (CY): “Constructing Heterotopias in Film”
    • Annetta Kapon (US): “Venus de Milo and other Feminist issues.”
    • Vesna Crnivec (SL): “Bakers from Baku”
    • Susan Barnet (GB): “Displaced Studios project”
    • Dana Sederowsky (SE): “Special Announcements”
    • Kirill Preobrazhenskiy (RU): “Cheremushki Apartment Gallery”
    • Sylvia de Swaan (US): “Return”
    • Fyodor Telkov (RU): “Longing for the Truth”
    • Diana Machulina (RU): “Artwork Migrations”


  • Sheila Pinkel (US), Helene Black (CY) – (project initiators, invited artists curators)
  • International Participants – Sheila Pinkel (US), Helene Black (CY), Yiannis Colakides (CY), Anastasia Lukina (RU/CY), Alisa Prudnikova (RU)
  • Alisa Prudnikova (RU), Kseniya Fedorova (RU) – (Russian participation curators)
  • NeMe/NCCA Guest Curator: Lee Wells (US) – video program ‘DRIFT’


  • NeMe (Cyprus)
  • National Centres for Contemporary Arts, Ekaterinburg and Moscow, Russia
  • Ural State University named after A. M. Gorky, Ekaterinburg, Russia
  • Ekaterinburg Academy of Contemporary Art, Russia

Main Sponsors

  • Ministry of Culture, Russian Federation
  • Cultural Services, Ministry of Education and Culture, Republic of Cyprus
  • Department of Culture, City Administration, Ekaterinburg, Russia


  • Bank of Cyprus, Moscow Branch
  • Arts Victoria, Australia
  • United States Consulate, Ekaterinburg