ZIP Group Exhibition at HSE Art Gallery

Polnoch (“Midnight”), an exhibition by ZIP art group, is featured at the HSE Art Gallery January 31-February 24.

ZIP Group is a Russian art group that was created in 2009 in Krasnodar. The group’s art explores the themes of labour, community, and self-organization, transforming entire installations into utopian spaces for work, leisure and communication.

For the Polnoch exhibition, students of the HSE Art and Design School (Faculty of Communications, Media and Design) helped construct an installation and project hall at the HSE Art Gallery. The exhibition also features earlier works by ZIP, which have never before been displayed in Moscow.

The Polnoch exhibition is a three-part project housed in three rooms which represent three social systems: capitalism, socialism and communism. The background for capitalism is a mall, where security guards and saleswomen work, socialise, and live. These two gender-specific professions embody the controlled and artificial nature of a free market society, replete with a commercial lipstick smile and guards who may turn your pockets out with a torch at any moment. Paintings from the All Inclusive series (2014) are enhanced with objects. A court, a stadium, and a monument are some of the typical markers of a Russian city, be it Krasnodar or any other city, which are then followed by an unprincipled logic of development, where comfortable urban space gives way to market and corruption.

A security guard who manages to break away from this rigid reality becomes a character in the next part, socialism. Socialism is embodied in free collective work—in this case, the installation of the exhibits, which allows people to share experiences, stand on equal footing, and unite: an artist becomes a worker, and a worker, to the contrary, can fulfill his or her creative potential.

A laser beam then cuts through a window from socialism to communism, where sinful traces of the man who created this horrible world almost disappear. A jaguar hovering at midnight, a pile of deactivated grenades, a thick bush – the world beyond the man turns into a utopian future and prehistoric past at the same time.

The exhibition will include several master classes by artists. Check out the gallery website and Facebook for the schedule.

Address: HSE Art Gallery, 12 Malaya Pionerskaya Ulitsa

Admission is free!

ZIP Group

ZIP Group is a Russian art group created in 2009 in Krasnodar. The group includes Evgeny Rimkevich and brothers Vasily and Stepan Subbotin. ZIP Group founded the Krasnodar Institute of Contemporary Art and co-founded Tipografia, a contemporary arts center in Krasnodar. ZIP Group explores the themes of labour, community, and self-organization, transforming entire installations into utopian spaces for work, leisure and communication.

ZIP Group’s projects have been featured at festivals such as the Steirische Herbst (Austria, 2018), the Barents Spektakel (Finland, 2018), the Ural Industrial Biennale of Contemporary Art (2017), and the Moscow International Biennale of Young Art (2010, 2014). ZIP Group were finalists for the 2012 Kandinsky Prize in the ‘Young Artist. Project of the Year’ category; they were awarded the Innovation Award in ‘Local Contemporary Art Project’ in 2013, and they were nominated for the Kandinsky Prize for ‘Project of the Year’ in 2014. In 2017 the group received the Kandinsky Prize for ‘Project of the Year’ for its exhibition ‘ZIP Culture Club Station’.