Framer Framed is very happy to invite us to the opening of It Won’t Be Long Now, Comrades!, a group exhibition coinciding with the 100th anniversary of the Great October Socialist Revolution in Russia. Geographically, the exhibition focuses on countries directly affected by the October Revolution (and the Communist regime as its aftermath), exploring the potential emancipatory power of revolution and resistance in these post-communist regions today – often with reference to the areas’ complex histories.
Nowadays there is a wide-spread scepticism of revolutions, with people claiming they are doomed to fail, or that they only worsen situations. This exhibition avoids the usual focus on disappointments. Instead, it stresses the often taken-for-granted rights today which have been hard-fought in the revolutions of the past, and the potential of revolutions in the present to bring about future change. It also focuses on the difficult but important task of self-organisation and bridging different struggles and opinions, in setting up truly collective, citizen-based political action.
By looking at the histories and present situations of a variety of post-communist countries, the artists and curators of It Won’t Be Long Now, Comrades! aim to find answers to a series of pertinent political questions. How do you effectively organise citizen-based political action? Where does political agency lie, and how can it be (re)claimed? How can different, sometimes opposing voices be included in a revolutionary idea in an equal matter - combining their many complex and urgent points of view? What can we learn from the past in terms of revolutionary power today
The title of the exhibition is borrowed from Ninotchka, a Hollywood comedy from 1939 that mocks the dull and grey communist existence, in comparison to the glitter and glamour of capitalism. With the phrase It Won’t Be Long Now, Comrades! the protagonist of the film, Nina Ivanovna Yakushova (Ninotchka), reflects on the crisis of the capitalist system. In a similar way, the artists in this exhibition point to previous rapid transformations to remind us that political change is possible, and to continue the struggle for inclusive, bottom-up alternatives to neoliberalism.
Participating artists; Željka Blakšić aka Gita Blak, Irina Bucan, Gluklya (Natalia Pershina-Yakimanskaya), Nikita Kadan, Tigran Khachatryan, Andreja Kulunčić, Marge Monko, Nikolay Oleynikov, Agnieszka Piksa, Karol Radziszewski, Mykola Ridnyi, Tereza Stejskalová & Zbyněk Baladrán
It Won’t Be Long Now, Comrades! is curated by Katia Krupennikova and Inga Lāce.