press release

Re-action is the title of the exhibition with which the Moscow group Radek Community comes back to Germany, this time –though– with an extensive solo show at PLAY_gallery for still and motion pictures opening on Tuesday, January 17th. On the occasion, a new project –staging a plurality of visual strategies and intervention plans, both originating from a common field of subjects- will be presented.

Where can the socialisation processes be set up today? What remains of the experience of the community dissolution? What are the techniques of the current public sphere when all usual links of social belonging fail? Which forms of collective action can be staged after the decline of the belonging to class and people? Which are the mechanisms of inclusion, participation, consensus? How does the social agency work in a condition of generalised market? It is an ideological criticism on what is “common” and –at the same time- the quest for conditions of possibility of the “common” the core of the work of Radek group.

Direct descendant of the provocative and politically incorrect actionism of the Moscow art scene of the ‘90s that saw Alexander Brener, Oleg Kulik, Anatoly Osmolovsky and Avdej Ter-Oganyan as charismatic figures of an individualist and aggressive heroism, the group Radek Community has preferred representing its other face, still rebellious, still radical but definitely reversal. Since 1997, Radek Community has defined itself as a group of young artists, cultural activists and musicians that –taking the political activism as a model- develops a mimetic, rhizomatic, performative practice inside the society’s body itself.

Known for its participation to Manifesta 4, Prague Biennale 1 and 2, the 50th Venice Biennale or exhibitions such as “Privatisierungen”, “Disobedience”, and “Kollektive Kreativität”, the group has –since its beginnings- characterised itself for staging public forms of collectivity, making use of performative strategies of various kinds. A known action of theirs in 2000 consisted in a march with banners and red flags on the streets of Moscow with which they turned passers-by at crossing into unwitting demonstrators. For the whole of 2001 they proclaimed themselves “schotchers” (“sellotapers”), carrying out compulsive forms of collectivisation by wrapping up with colourful adhesive tapes groups of people in situations they would improvised anywhere. More over, they have carried out virtual sound communities (2002) and staged hunger strikes with no demands (2003).

Re-action –the project conceived for Berlin- apparently moves away from all these direct actions. The title might even hint at this. Through the use of photo and video, the artificial and improvised community stages are left aside. This time –and with a more analytical attitude- the showcase of the ambiguity of certain basic collective situations (such as a family group portrait, bands performing live, groups of friends, or the art audience itself) is preferred. The visitors will be asked to question the reality they gaze at. Still, the aim that hides behind this additional gap Radek stages is once more political: turning visible the usually invisible collective subjects. They will be handed in with no remedy, though, to their way of being. Exactly as they are.



Re-action - Radek Community 
A project by Radek Community and Marco Scotini