Published by Hatje Cantz. Introduction by Lorand Hegyi, Olga Sviblova. Text by Pavel Pepperstein.
Pavel Pepperstein (born 1966), long since acknowledged as the central figure in Russia’s contemporary art scene, constitutes an important link between the older generation of Moscow Conceptualists and young aspiring artists in his country. In Pepperstein’s graphic, painterly works, mysterious hybrid worlds open themselves up to the viewer’s gaze. Motifs from Russian and ancient mythology encounter avant-garde forms in the style of El Lissitzky or Kasimir Malevich that are combined, much like collages, with Hollywood or science-fiction scenes. The artist adds a handwritten, annotative element to this bold blend. His playful gestures break through the confines of the familiar and ironically blend Russian icons with images taken from Western pop culture. This catalogue gathers a selection of stories by Pepperstein, taken from his short story collection The Secret of Our Time, and his recent works on canvas.
Published by Hatje Cantz. Edited by Matthias Haldemann. Essays by Boris Groys, Ilya Kabakov, and Viktor Mazin.
Pavel Pepperstein, one of the best-known artists and authors of Russia's younger generation, represents an important link between the elder exponents of Moscow Conceptualism and the young artists of his homeland. While working for the Kunsthaus Zug, Switzerland, from 1998 to 2002, he invited select Russian guests to take part in exhibitions within the context of an unusual collection project. His invitees included the groups Inspection Medical Hermeneutics (which he helped found) and Russland, plus Viktor Pivovarov, Viktor Mazin, Boris Groys, and Ilya Kabakov. Zug thus became a meeting place for Russian artists and their friends, as well as an increasingly interested and enthusiastic audience--an excellent example of sustainable cultural exchange. Pepperstein himself normally painted without preliminary sketches and directly on museum walls, creating brilliant pictures that were painted over after each show. Only in a local schoolhouse, bank, and prison were walls made available for the creation of permanent works which would comprise an expanded, publicly accessible museum collection. Swiss photographer Guido Baselgia documented the successful project over a period of five years.