The first time I heard about ‘Sots Art’ (or the fact that such thing existed) was when I attended the Soviet Non-Conformist exhibition last month. I left the gallery fascinated by the Moscow School of Conceptualism which has attempted to undermine Socialist ideology, as well as the physical boundaries of the regime. I had no idea that Pop Art (or at least a variety of it) managed to develop in a country which hated and banned anything coming from these “horrible” Americans.
I also left a bit homesick as some of the images and objects of art evoked memories from my childhood in a post Soviet country. There was an illustration of one of my favourite book characters – Molivko and installation of a bed, which remarkably resembled the aluminium couches that furnished hospitals. They still do, actually. Oh, how artistically contradictive these queues for milk and breads were . . . only ask my grandparents.