Garage Triennial of Russian Contemporary Art, "A Beautiful Night for All the People," installation view
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This Year’s Garage Triennial Was Curated Entirely Through Personal Connections as a Commentary on Russia’s History of Corruption

10 / 11 / 2020
Past participants were asked to invite whomever they wanted to show in the 2020 edition.
The second edition of the Garage Triennial of Russian Contemporary Art opens to the public today at the Garage Museum in Moscow.

As you might expect for a country as large and diverse as Russia, putting together an overview of contemporary artistic production is a monumental task. The sprawling inaugural show in 2017 was the result of a crack team of six curators scouring 42 cities and towns across 11 time zones for talent.

This time, the curators took a more unorthodox approach. Leaning into the geographical spread that informed the inaugural triennial, curators Valentin Diaconov and Anastasia Mityushina asked the more than 60 artists who took part in 2017 to pick the artists for the second edition. Naturally, a number of artists nominated friends and family, while others chose to auction or raffle off the coveted position.

This was all fine with the curators, who asked only that these connections were made explicit, and that selector and selectee worked together on some dimension of the presentation. The results are being published on the triennial’s website, and include strange collaborations such as Maria Alexandrova’s documentation of a long drive to a remote Siberian village with the grandmother of her nominee, Anna Tereshkina, and Roman Mokrov’s chaotic promise to watch the kids while his nominee, his wife Maria Obukhova, worked on her art.