Tate Film is pleased to be hosting the UK premiere of Anton Vidokle’s newly-completed film trilogy on Russian cosmism and discussion with art critic, media theorist and philosopher Boris Groys.
Today the Russian philosophy known as Cosmism has been largely forgotten. Its utopian tenets – combining Western Enlightenment with Eastern philosophy, Russian Orthodox traditions with Marxism – inspired many key Soviet thinkers. In this three-part film project, Anton Vidokle probes Cosmism’s influence on the twentieth century and suggests its relevance to the present day. In This is Cosmos 2014, the artist returns to the foundations of Cosmist thought. The second chapter, entitled The Communist Revolution Was Caused By The Sun 2015, explores the links between cosmology and politics. The film's recently-completed third chapter, Immortality and Resurrection for All! 2017, restages the museum as a site of resurrection, a central Cosmist idea.
Combining essay, documentary and performance, the trilogy quotes from the writings of Cosmism’s founder Nikolai Fedorov and other philosophers and poets. His wandering camera searches for traces of Cosmist influence in the remains of Soviet-era art, architecture and engineering, moving from the steppes of Kazakhstan to the museums of Moscow. Music by John Cale and Éliane Radigue accompanies these haunting images, conjuring up the yearning for connectedness, social equality, material transformation and immortality at the heart of Cosmist thought.
Anton Vidokle, Immortality for All: A Film Trilogy on Russian Cosmism, Kazakhstan / Germany / Russia / USA 2014–17, DCP, colour, sound, 96 min, Russian with English subtitles
The screening is followed by a discussion with the artist, writer Boris Groys and Andrea Lissoni, Senior Curator of International Art (Film) at Tate Modern.
Anton Vidokle (b.1965, Russia) is an artist based in New York and Berlin. As founder of e-flux and e-flux journal, he has produced projects such as the Martha Rosler Library 2005-2006, Pawnshop 2007, unitednationsplaza 2008-09 and Time/Bank 2010. Vidokle’s work has been exhibited internationally at Documenta 13 and the 56th Venice Biennale. His films have been screened at Bergen Assembly; Shanghai Biennale; Istanbul Biennial; Witte de With, Rotterdam; Museum of Modern Art, Warsaw; Berlinale International Film Festival; Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; Gwangju Biennale; Locarno Festival; and Centre Pompidou, among others.