For the second year in a row, the epidemic situation has prevented the Monstration from taking place in Vladimir the way it was conceived back in 2004 by the Novosibirsk artist Artem Loskutov – in the form of a procession with absurdist slogans. Last year, our city’s residents supported the nationwide trend by posting photos with the hashtag #Monstration33 on the social network. In 2021, the event was held as a party at the Luzer Bar, located at the Fligel Center for Contemporary Culture.
The organizers, Irina Kurochkina (Murochkina) and Natalia Feldman, did not apply for the parade, but informally talked to City Hall and got the answer: “Not the time, not the place. However, this time they still managed to organize a face-to-face meeting of the participants – a dozen and a half people came to draw posters.
“In the monstratie [organizers’] chat room, different formats of the action were suggested, but none was satisfactory to everyone. And there was a general feeling that it makes no sense to hold another online, it is an inadequate substitute for the normal Monstration. Especially for the cities, which had many thousands of marches.
“Why did we decide to do the Monstration in Vladimir, despite the Monstration’s generally depressed mood? It seemed to me that if we do nothing this year, it means that the beginning, the seed, it will not sprout. Last year there was an online event, this year – a party, it’s already some kind of development,” said Irina.
It took the participants about an hour to make the posters. This gave birth, for example, to the slogans “Progress alone in the apartment,” “There are only two genders, me and my schizo,” and the triptych “Eat pineapple,” “Chew gum,” and “Bon appétit. And someone wrote his bitcoin wallet number on a cardboard.
The Monstration is an apolitical action. At the same time, contemporary art is able to reflect reality by creatively processing it and expressing it in an artistic form.
After expressing themselves with the help of placards, the participants went to the courtyard of the “Fligel,” where they walked several times through the private territory, chanting slogans. Inspiration came from objects that caught their eye, so the Vladimir Monstrants shouted “tree”, “lad-der”, “roof” and more.
Next, the participants took a general picture with the main slogan of the Vladimir action – on a paper canvas was written the word “It showed” with gradually disappearing (or leaking) letters. And at the very end, they hung the posters on ropes in the yard, organizing an improvised exhibition.
A monstration is a public performance similar to a demonstration, but intended as creative performance art, often parodying a serious demonstration. It is principally a Russian phenomenon.