Alexander Brener belongs to the generation of Russian performance artists who were active during the last years of the Soviet Union and engaged with public space. He gained international notoriety in 1997 when he painted a green dollar sign on Kasimir Malevich’s white painting Suprematism 1920–1927 at the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam. This protest against the corruption and commercialization of the art market ended in a prison sentence, despite his assertion that the act was an artistic performance. Together with his Austrian partner Barbara Schurz, he has continued to address power strategies and mechanisms of exclusion in society and the art market since the 1990s. They also produce drawings that extend their programmatic critique of capitalism, referencing both Outsider Art and the tradition of the Russian popular print, or lubok, which traditionally contained satirical, informative, patriotic messages as well as social critique. In addition, Brener and Schurz have long been publishing brilliant literary works and theoretically oriented illustrated books in a samizdat-inspired format. For the exhibition Conspiracy of the Cephalopods they have drawn their own retrospective.

21.9.2019–19.1.2020

Exhibition

Tue–Sun 10:00–17:00

9.50/3.50 Euro

Opening: 20.9., 19:00

Artists: Alexander Brener and Barbara Schurz
Curated by Roman Grabner

In cooperation with steirischer herbst ’19