Participatory Urban Replaning and Artistic Street Activities in St. Petersburg

    • IMG_7723
    • Presentation speakers
      • Ira Konyukhova, Hochschule fur Gestaltung, Karlsruhe, Germany


    In this presentation I will investigate how street activities and artistic guerrilla actions reflect upon the political situation, social disparity and economic insecurity in Russia by taking the example of the city of St. Petersburg. The self-proclaimed and widely acknowledged “cultural capital” of Russia owns the biggest collection of European and Russian art as well the largest open air collection of baroque and classic architecture in Russia. Despite of that, the street activities in the city are rather sporadic and don’t involve a lot of citizens, being discussed in quite marginalized group of street artists and activists. How it is possible to overcome the city’s apathy and self – righteousness of established structures, to break down the city’s self-musealization and to motivate people to think actively about their own home – these are questions which every Petersburgian public artist have to answer. Politic, refugees, women rights, hazard of democracy are just some topics in which the activists trying to involve people into a discussion. Starting with the notorious action “in prison of FSB” by art-group “woina” I will show how the understanding of public art developed in Russia through one decade up to public program of Manifesta-10 aiming to link the attention of the visitors to the local public initiatives and vernacular cultural movements. Preparing this topic, I established an intense contact with young artists from Petersburg, feminist activists as well Moscow based group of public activists and urbanists, which opened its second location in St. Petersburg last year, The all are trying to bring some attention to peculiarity of Russian street movements through participating at the international festivals and also bringing new ideas from Europe into the more and more closing up country.