in Post-Soviet Russia
Only when the past ceases to trouble and anticipations of the future are not perturbing is a being united with his environment and therefore fully alive.
-- John Dewey, Art as Experience
There is neither freedom nor discipline in the abstract, but only in the concrete forms that depend on the cultural context.
-- Karl Mannheim
Freedom, Power, and Democratic Planning
In the summer of 1992, on St. Petersburg's
major thoroughfare, Nevskii Prospekt, in
Ploshchad' Vosstaniya (The Square of the
Uprising) a new electronic billboard of the sort found in New York City's
Times Square was installed. Its simple message declared: "Biznes -- Eto Iskusstvo," or "Business Is Art." In terms of describing the situation of
artists in Petersburg, the billboard might have proclaimed the opposite:
"Iskusstvo -- Eto Biznes," or "Art Is Business." The central reality of artis
tic life in St. Petersburg after the dissolution of the Soviet Union is that art