julia kissina

 

 

DEAD ARTISTS SOCIETY

 

There is nothing mysterious about the immortality of the soul. It seems far more mysterious to me to imagine that there will be nothing after death...
Marcel Duchamp

Since 2006 I have performed a number of actions under the title «Dead Artists Society». In them I add an unconventional communicative method to the academic analysis of artistic works and the research into biographies of the artists: in public spiritual séances, famous artists are conjured up and asked about the meaning of life and of art.
At the Werkleitzbiennale in the city of Halle (2006) the visitors were invited to address questions to the spirit of Marcel Duchamp. With the aid of a saucer moving around a surface with letters organized in a circular pattern, Marcel Duchamp answered the questions addressed to him (among other things, the great artist explained that he is still doing art in the beyond).


In an action during the Biennale in Moscow (2007) I talked with the Russian painter Ilya Repin in a séance (an exhibition on realism in the Tretyakov Gallery together with the American astronaut Nicole Stott). In a séance with Kazimir Malevitch, I and other artists learned of the ultimate end of art. In the Berlin gallery «General Public», abstract original sketches by Leonardo and Pollock «Unknown Masterpieces» were exhibited which these artists had drawn through the aid of various participants during a séance.


All the séances have been recorded in video («Dialogues with Classics»), from which the illuminating the book «DEAD ARTISTS SOCIETY» – a book concerning virulent questions of art but also of life – has been created.

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