Chto delat? / What is to be done?
was founded in early 2003 in Petersburg by a workgroup of artists, critics, philosophers, and writers from Petersburg, Moscow, and Nizhny Novgorod with the goal of merging political theory, art, and activism.
Since then, Chto delat has been publishing an English-Russian newspaper on issues central to engaged culture, with a special focus on the relationship between a repoliticization of Russian intellectual culture and its broader international context. These newspapers are usually produced in the context of collective initiatives such as art projects or conferences.
In his talk, Chto delat co-editor David Riff
will talk about the potentialities and pitfalls of artistic, intellectual, and poltical self-organization under hostile contexts such as the one in Russia, and how projects like Chto delat can spark developments beyond their narrow, sectarian scope.
Meeting held in english
On Chto Delat? collective: LINK
Interview with David Riff on anteprojects.com: LINK
David Riff -
studied cultural anthropology at SUNY New Paltz (US) and slavonic studies and art history at the Ruhr University Bochum (Germany). In the early 2000s, he wrote two monographs on the non-conformist Soviet artists of the Sixties, Vadim Sidur and Vladimir Yankilevsky. He has been living in Moscow since 2002, where he has been translating and writing art criticism and theory, contributing to Flash Art, springerin, Moscow Art Magazine, documenta 12 magazine (issues 2 and 3), as well as Rethinking Marxism. A member of the workgroup Chto delat and co-editor of its newspaper since 2003, Riff also participated in the 52nd Venice Biennale in collaboration with Dmitry Gutov on a project called the Karl Marx School of the English Language. He is currently contributing editor of the Russian internet culture portal openspace.ru