Wallpaper* Magazine: An exhibition of post-Soviet photography brings light where there was darkness

‘Post-Soviet Visions: Image and Identity in the New Eastern Europe’, a new exhibition at the Calvert 22 Foundation’s gallery space in East London, takes in the work of other young photographers across the former Soviet Union and its satellite states. And in much of their work you can see the same ambiguous, impressionistic take on post-Soviet possibility.

The foundation, which also runs online magazine The Calvert Journal, is dedicated to looking at contemporary culture and creativity in what it calls the ‘New East’. And the exhibition, says Calvert 22’s creative director Ekow Eshun, comes out of that conversation. What is marked in pretty much all the works is not nihilism and despair, but rather improvised opportunity. ‘The show is about how these artists imagine and create space,’ Eshun says. For curator Anastasiia Fedorova, ‘it’s also about youth, and youth in historical context, how the 26 years since the collapse of the USSR is a whole life for the new generation. Just like youth, this historical transition is also about growing pains, empathy and ecstasy, and the restless identity search.’

Written by: Nick Compton

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