Daily Archives: June 12, 2009

Song of Solidarity: A Video Letter to Artem Loskutov

On June 9, members of the Verkhotura Dance Theater, the Street University, and their friends recorded this “Song of Solidarity” for Artem Loskutov, who was released on his own recognizance from a Novosibirsk jail on June 10.

 
  

Spring has come to the streets, the trees are already in bloom.
And only the lads don’t come to see us,
And only the lads don’t come to see us.
For nowadays they nab the young fellows here, there and everywhere.
For nowadays young fellows,
Artists, the bolder ones,
Are nabbed here, there and everywhere.

It’s moot to ask who is to blame.
Neither the City of  N. nor Center “E” has anything to do with it, it seems.
Neither the City of  N. nor Center “E” has anything to do with it, it seems.
They nab the boys and charge them, and it’s all the same to them.
They nab the boys and charge them,
They force them to confess,
And it’s all the same to them.

Don’t slumber, artist, don’t succumb to sleep.
You are the system’s hostage, a prisoner of the times.
You are the system’s hostage, a prisoner of the times.
Struggle, artist, struggle, don’t confess your guilt.
Struggle, artist, struggle.
You are the system’s hostage.
Don’t confess your guilt.

Lawlessness abounds, and it is impossible to remain silent.
We clench our fists when we hear of fabricated criminal cases.
We clench our fists when we hear of fabricated criminal cases.
Your extremist department is art’s arch enemy.
Your extremist department, on the sidelines, as it were,
Is art’s arch enemy.

We throw aside our paints and brushes, we head into the streets.
When it is forbidden for us to speak, we won’t grow glum.
When it is forbidden for us to speak, we won’t grow glum.
When art is under lock and key, we head into the streets.
When art is under lock and key,
And everyone has forgotten about the law,
We head into the streets.

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Filed under contemporary art, film and video, open letters, manifestos, appeals, political repression, protests

The Militant Modernist: Owen Hatherley

owen-hatherleyBelieve it or not, Chtodelat News is interested in more than just the endless war between Center “E” and “extremist” artists. Please check out this interview with our comrade Owen Hatherley on the perils of blogging in a text-saturated age, his new book Militant Modernism, and the answer to our favorite question, What is to be done?

As to what should be done, well – a wave of full nationalisations, without compensation, combined with an attendant expansion of workers’ control – something made much more viable by the internet and other advanced technologies – would be a good start. We also need, and could undergo, a fourth industrial revolution to convert a dead-end economy based on fossil fuels and rapacious growth to less destructive energies and technologies. This would be a huge Modernist project, easily the equal of the earlier technological revolutions but without making the same mistakes, with a vast potential for the creation of new forms or new and better ways of living. I think most of this would be popular, far more now than at any time for decades.

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Filed under critical thought, interviews