Book presentation: “The fate of works of ancient Russian painting, 1920-1930-ies”

Mon 12.11.2018
16.00 to 18.00

Open to all.

The National Library of Finland, Agricola room, Unioninkatu 36, Helsinki

Book presentation: “The fate of works of ancient Russian painting, 1920-1930-ies” by Elena Osokina (Professor of Russian History, University of South Carolina, Columbia, USA) on Monday, 12 November 2018, at 4 pm at the National Library of Finland, Agricola room. The book is in Russian, presentation in English.

Book abstract: 
In the 1930s, the Soviet government offered thousands of Orthodox icons from destroyed churches and nationalized collections for sale. This book explores the Soviet export of religious images. It is not, however, merely a study of one more Machiavellian dimension of Stalinism that placed the objects of a repressed church at the service of the godless state. By documenting the marketing strategies employed by Stalin’s merchants to promote a new art commodity, this study challenges the stereotypical view of Stalinism as “marketless.” It adds to our understanding of the economy of Soviet socialism and its contribution to the development of the world art market. The book also discusses the implications that such state marketing strategies might have for the national cultural heritage and international cultural exchange.  Image removed.

Author biography: Elena A. Osokina is a Professor of Russian History at the University of South Carolina (Columbia, USA). She received her Ph.D. from the Department of History at Moscow University, Russia.

Book info: ”Небесная голубизна ангельских одежд: Судьба произведений древнерусской живописи, 1920–1930-е годы”. Москва: Новое литературное обозрение, 2018. (”The Heavenly Blue of Angels' Vestments: Soviet Export of Religious Art, 1920-1930s”, Moscow: New Literary Observer, 2018, in Russian.)

More about the book: