THE REVOLUTION IS STILL WITH US: A century ago, the Russian uprising of October 1917 defined the world order we know now, in which the struggle between individual and collective, capital and welfare, identity and authority continues to rage in new and unexpected ways. And though the Soviet state ultimately failed, it nevertheless left smoldering the embers of unrealized utopias and potentialitiesvisions of life and experience that challenged Western realities of oligarchy, democracy, colonialism, and war.
Art was at the center of these transformations. More so than Thermidor or Tahrir Square, the October Revolution posed the perceptual as political. Changing the way we see and sense could change the way we acted and thought. Forms, materials, making, organizingthese were, and could still be, the elements of a new society. In the pages that follow, curator MATTHEW WITKOVSKY examines major new exhibitions exploring the cataclysmic event; scholar DEVIN FORE unearths radical models of Soviet social organization; and critic OWEN HATHERLEY looks at revolutionary architecture and its seditious possibilities in the present.