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Conversation Olga Chernysheva and Cosmin Costinaº

20.00 hrs

How can realism be critical today?

Conversation Olga Chernysheva & Cosmin Costinaº

17.02.2011, 20.00 hrs

Olga Chernysheva, whose work is currently presented in the solo exhibition In the Middle of Things at BAK, basis voor actuele kunst, in Utrecht, talks with the exhibition curator Cosmin Costinaº about her practice. Several of Chernysheva's videos are presented during the conversation as a basis for a discussion about her subjective explorations of everyday life in contemporary Russia, which is marked by brutal neoliberal developments and lingering traumas from its Soviet past.

Costinaº and Chernysheva discuss artistic strategies in this complex social and cultural environment. Chernysheva’s method in approaching her surrounding reality raises questions such as: What does it mean to redeploy a certain tradition of realism in art today?; and How can realism serve as a critical tool? Reflecting on the status of contemporary art in Russia, Chernysheva and Costinaº also discuss the role of the artist, caught between dominant market trends of spectacle and commodity production. How can artists resist these tendencies while casting a critical eye on the social developments around them?

On the same occasion, BAK launches the artist edition Clippings by Olga Chernysheva. Based on the installation work Clippings (2010), this edition connects photographs and video stills with fragments of artist's reflections. Edition: 100, plus 10 signed copies.

Prior to the conversation, the exhibition is on view during extra opening hours from 18.30-20.00 hrs.

Time: 20.00 hrs. Location: Auditorium, Het Utrechts Archief, Hamburgerstraat 28, Utrecht (around the corner from BAK).
Language: English.
Cost: € 4 (valid for exhibition visit and conversation)

Reservations are required. Reservations can be made by sending an e-mail to

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