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27 Feb 2016 - 27 Mar 2016

AV Festival 2016: Meanwhile, what about Socialism? - R.E.P. (Revolutionary Experimental Space)

Festival Exhibition Preview: Fri 26 February, 7–10pm

Festival Opening Times: Tue – Sun 12–6pm, closed Mon

R.E.P. (Revolutionary Experimental Space) was formed in Kyiv in 2004 – the decade of their existence framed by the Orange Revolution of that year and the recent Revolution of Dignity both on Maidan Square. The group was the first in Ukraine to work collectively by consensus as a model of artistic collaboration.

R.E.P. launched the Patriotism project in 2006, a visual dictionary of graphic symbols indicating social phenomena, values and relationships. This alphabet is used spatially to create vinyl wall ‘murals’ that comment on the place and context of the exhibition. The language has been used to talk about communities, labour migration, political systems, art institutions, education and equality.

Free from identity politics, Patriotism draws on ideas such as universalism, the monumental propaganda of ideology-driven societies, and the consumer logos of capitalism.

Curated by AV Festival 2016: Meanwhile, what about Socialism? as part of the Festival group exhibition across nine venues in Newcastle and Gateshead.

The exhibition includes work by the following artists and archives: Thomas Spence (UK), Amber Films (UK), Jack Common/North East Film Archive (UK), Tim Brennan (UK), Hugo Canoilas (Portugal), Dan Perjovschi (Romania), Madhusudhanan (India), Pallavi Paul (India), Haim Sokol (Russia), R.E.P. (Ukraine), Claire Fontaine (France).

The Festival title comes from a quote in George Orwell’s book ‘The Road to Wigan Pier’, which is the thematic framework for AV Festival 2016–2018. In 1936, Orwell spent two months living in the industrial North observing working-class life amidst growing social injustice, poverty and unemployment. The book is an analysis of English socialism, concluding that the basis of democratic socialism is equality and fairness. Mirroring the book's structure, AV Festival 2016 is Part One, with artists situating themselves in relation to historic and contemporary political struggle. Presented in 14 venues the programme features 12 solo installations, 48 film screenings, nine artist talks and four performances.

For more information about the whole AV Festival programme please visit: www.avfestival.co.uk


Artist Talk
Sat 27 February, 11.30am–12.30pm

Tyneside Cinema, Digital Lounge

FREE, no booking required

In conversation event with the Kyiv-based artist collective R.E.P. and Moscow-based artist Haim Sokol, both artists will discuss their practice in the context of working in post-Soviet neoliberal capitalism framed by past and present revolutionary moments.


FREE, no booking required