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European Commission Reception
Photos courtesy of European Commission
Photographer Vladimir Lupovskoy

On Friday, March 14 the European Commission to Russia hosted a reception to celebrate Victor Erofeev and the fifth anniversary of his television talk show, Apocryphes. The event, hosted by European Commission Ambassador to Russia Marc Franco, also included an exhibit of photographs by Genia Durer as part of Moscow’s Photobiennale 2008 festival (for more information on Photobiennale 2008, see here). In the tradition of his talk show, Mr. Erofeev hosted a lively debate as part of the evening’s activities, focusing on the question of what conditions are most conducive to artistic creativity. Those present pondered Orson Welles’ notion that the absence of limitation is art’s greatest enemy, noting that the market itself can be a source of censorship. Turning to the specific, discussants considered these ideas in the Russian context, comparing today’s artistic climate with that of the Soviet era. Participants in the exchange included Photobiennale and Moscow House of Photography director Olga Sviblova, musician Andrei Makarevich of the rock group Mashina Vremeni, artist Oleg Kulik, Alexander Shaburov and Vyacheslav Mizin of the controversial contemporary art duo The Blue Noses, Nezavisimaya Gazeta owner and editor Konstantin Remchukov, theater director Kama Ginkhas, and the New Tretyakov Gallery’s Andrei Erofeev.

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