We can say that the 1990s were – to use three contentious terms – the era of globalisation, deregulation and democratisation. Titled after Sergey Kuryokhin and Sergey Sholokhov’s absurd 1991 mockumentary from the last days of the Soviet Union, the exhibition Lenin Was a Mushroom, with Rosângela Rennó and other 19 artists examines the 1990s. During the transition towards a supposed unipolar world, and in simultaneity with new international attitudes in the artistic sphere, film and video art of the 1990s broadened perspectives of the visual kind.
With wider accessibility of both video hardware and editing software, the 1990s were a key period for the development and proliferation of film and video art. Lenin Was a Mushroom looks at moving images that offered reflections of the era but also new modes and means for image-making through the technological advancements adopted by artists.
The eclecticism of the twenty participating artistis can be seen as characteristic of the post-modern condition, and given space here for critical reflection. Thus, rather than being an exhaustive survey, Lenin Was a Mushroom will present a selection of artworks that offer insights into the manifold artistic interests and modalities of the day. Instead of defining a generation, the exhibition will be deliberately inter-generational – looking at artists who were working at their artistic peak alongside others who were producing their formative works – in order to provide a unique perspective upon moving image practices in the last decade of the 20th century.
Lenin Was a Mushroom, with Rosângela Rennó, AMVK, Aernout Mik, Amar Kanwar, Andrea Fraser, Artūras Raila, David Claerbout, Gianni Motti, Gillian Wearing, Hänzel & Gretzel, Johan Grimonprez, Nedko Solakov, Pipilotti Rist, Rosalind Nashashibi, Şener Özmen and Erkan Özgen, Sergey Kuryokhin and Sergey Sholokhov, Shilpa Gupta, Stan Douglas
Exhibition curated by Nav Haq
From June 3rd to August 21st, 2022
Leuvenstraat 32, 2000 Antwerp
Tue-Sun, 11am to 6 pm