The Museum of Contemporary Art Antwerp (M HKA) is pleased to present an exhibition by Anton Vidokle entitled It’s Cosmos, on view from January 22 to May 1, 2022.
Artist Anton Vidokle (1965, Moscow) currently lives in New York and Berlin. His film Immortality for All: A Film Trilogy on Russian Cosmism (2014-17) explores the phenomenon of Russian cosmism. The first part of the trilogy (It’s Cosmos, 2014) however returns to the foundations of Cosmist. The second part (The communist revolution was caused by the sun, 2015) explores the links between cosmology and politics, while the third (Immortality and resurrection for all!, 2017) presents the museum as a place of resurrection – a central cosmist idea.
Russian cosmism was based on the speculative theories of Russian philosopher Nikolai Fedorov (1829-1903). This revolutionary movement brings together biopolitics, utopia, universalism, the radical humanism of the Enlightenment, the spirituality of Orthodox Christianity and museology, and has a common mission. This is threefold: the universal bodily resurrection of the dead, accession to immortality, and finally the colonization of space; all thanks to future advances in science and technology. In his films, Vidokle analyzes the influence of Russian cosmism on the 20th century and measures its relevance for today. The development of cosmist ideas was abruptly interrupted by Stalin’s purges in the 1930s, during which many of the movement’s supporters were imprisoned or executed.
Today, interest in the projects and ideas of Russian cosmism is revived by philosophical trends that intertwine with technological thinking. Thus, artists and theorists like Anton Vidokle, Arseny Zhilyaev, Anastasia Gacheva and Boris Groys, among others, continue to explore the relevance and potential of the contemporary development of cosmism.