Slavs and Tatars (founded 2006) is a collective whose installations, performance lectures, publications, and artist’s multiples reflect upon intercultural relations and the perceived differences between Western cultures and the Eastern world. Pursuing an unconventional research-based practice, the group identifies the “area east of the former Berlin Wall and west of the Great Wall of China known as Eurasia” as their point of reference, and with much wit and wordplay, their projects address the transmission and hybridization of traditions, politics, and language within in the region. For Projects 98, Slavs and Tatars build upon a recent cycle of works which examines the concept of the anti-modern and will realize a new installation titled Beyonsense, which takes its name from a translation of zaum—the Futurist experiments with transrational language and poetry. The collective’s first solo museum presentation in the United States, Beyonsense will feature a reading room populated by a number of Slavs and Tatars’ text-based objects and printed editions, transforming the gallery into a space for reflection and pause to contemplate the mystical and affective sides of modernism.
Organized by Gretchen L. Wagner, Sue and Eugene Mercy, Jr., Assistant Curator, Department of Prints and Illustrated Books.
The Elaine Dannheisser Projects Series is made possible in part by The Junior Associates of The Museum of Modern Art.
Additional generous support for this exhibition is provided by the Sharjah Art Foundation.
Special thanks to Pasargad, New York.
Image: Installation view of Projects 98: Slavs and Tatars. 2012. The Museum of Modern Art, New York. Photo: Courtesy of the artists