PRINT December 1999

Boris Groys

1. “The Great Utopia: The Russian and Soviet Avant-Garde, 1915–1932” (Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, 1992) Even before the Revolution, the artists of the Russian avant-garde dreamed of giving the new century an at once entirely new and unified aesthetic form, analogous to the styles that marked the Gothic, Renaissance, or Baroque periods. In this case, however, the new style had to be a matter not just of historical development but of conscious, systematic planning. After the Revolution the dream seemed to be within reach, at least in Russia, but ultimately neither the political powers nor the democratic consumer wanted to give the artists the freedom to design the world around them according to their own taste. Now, at the end of the century, a relatively uniform aesthetic style has established itself, but its origin is anonymous—and one doesn’t even know whether this style is pleasing

to keep reading

Artforum print subscribers have full access to this article. Please sign in below.

Not registered for Register here.

SUBSCRIBE NOW at the discounted holiday rate of $45 a year—70% off the newsstand price—and receive the print magazine plus full online access to this issue and our archive.*

Order the PRINT EDITION of the December 1999 issue for $17 or the ONLINE EDITION for $5.99.

* This rate applies to U.S. domestic subscriptions.