Danh Vo (b. 1975) We The People (detail), 2011.
KADIST collection. photo: Matthew Booth
Chiara Fumai (b. 1978) A Male Artist is a Contradiction in Terms, 2013.
V-A-C collection
Lucy McKenzie
Lina Mouton, 2016. V-A-C collection
Wael Shawky (b. 1971) Cabaret Crusades III: The Secrets of Karbalaa (Marionette), 2014.
V-A-C collection
MMOMA collection
Date: April 26 — September 16, 2018
Venue: MMOMA, 25 Petrovka

General Rehearsal is a content-rich, innovative presentation that combines works from three international art collections: V-A-C Foundation, KADIST and Moscow Museum of Modern Art. The project addresses for the first time V-A-C’s new approach to exhibition making, introducing a more fluid, transparent method of working collectively and engaging all disciplines equally. Designed to evolve and change like a living organism that adapts and responds to its environment, it adopts the structure of a theatrical play developing over three acts to be staged over a five-month period. In this framework, the project proposes considering artworks as actors in the play, having a potential agency similar to human beings.

Organised over three floors at MMOMA’s historic Petrovka Street gallery, visitors will be met with British artist Mike Nelson’s work Again, More Things (a table ruin). Best known for creating powerful, immersive, large-scale installations, Nelson selected historic and contemporary figurative works from the V-A-C collection for his presentation, by artists including Pawel Althamer, Louise Bourgeois, Constantine Brâncusi, Alberto Giacometti, Sherrie Levine, Henry Moore and Willem de Kooning. Displayed on a reclaimed wooden floor as a mass of modelled figures, the sculptural installation, inspired by a Dieter Roth work, The Floor (Studio-floor from Mosfellsbaer, Iceland), (1973-1992), is what Nelson describes as a «levelling of sorts, questioning how we look at objects.» The piece also serves as an introductory model for how works are activated in the rest of the show.

The top floor of the building will be designed like a storage space for works of art, a repository of potential actors organised in coherent formations. Angry Things, for example, groups images and objects that express a passion for a political cause, action or radical position. This is seen in Arseny Zhilyaev’s Cobblestone Weapon of the Proletariat, (2015, V-A-C collection), where both social and technological upheaval is represented by weapons and tools of revolt displayed in a star-shaped vitrine; The Recursive Things, mis-en-abime structures formation, instead, presents multi-layered works such British artist Ryan Gander’s video Things that mean things and things that look like they mean things (2008, KADIST collection), where the spectator watches a documentary about the making of a film entitled The magic and the meaning, which, in reality, is an imaginary film that has never actually been made. The Cross-dressing Objects formation includes a series of photography and video works by the late Russian artist Vladislav Mamyshev-Monroe (MMOMA collection), which see him dressed up as and offering his unique portrayal of some of Russia’s and indeed the world’s most icon figures, from Dostoevsky and Warhol to a series of shots where he re-enacts takes from the famous shower scene from the cult movie Psycho.

Over time and space, the works of art will in turn be removed from this densely packed exhibition space to take on different roles in the three acts that will be staged in the grand middle floor gallery of this Moscow aristocratic mansion. Over the fivemonth exhibition period, General Rehearsal will offer the public curated selections of painting, drawing, sculpture, installation, photography, mixed-media, film, video and performance, including rare, iconic and major works of art alongside pieces from lesser-known, emerging talents from all over the world; new commissions and specially written scripts to narrate the presentations. One such example is that of the Moscow and Saint Petersburg based Theatre of Mutual Operations, who have been invited to write and perform a screenplay inspired by the collections.

The Belgian artist Koenraad Dedobbeleer, well-known for expanding our perspective of objects and their appearance with his installation and sculpture, has been commissioned to design displays, walls, plinths, seating and other forms that will guide the visitor around General Rehearsal, transforming and opening up the building with his sculptural objects.

General Rehearsal will include work by artists such as Victor Alimpiev, Jennifer Allora & Guillermo Calzadilla, Francis Alys, Tauba Auerbach, Erick Beltrán, Alighiero Boetti, Alexander Brodsky, Marcel Broodthaers, CAMP, Marc Camille Chaimowicz, Phil Collins, Bernadette Corporation, Abraham Cruzvillegas, Mariana Castillo Deball, Willie Doherty, Ceal Floyer, Günther Förg, Chiara Fumai, Alexandra Galkina, Ryan Gander, Jeff Koons, Mark Leckey, Piero Manzoni, Allan McCollum, Lucy McKenzie, Andrei Monastyrski & Collective Actions, Vladislav Mamyshev-Monroe, Amedeo Modigliani, Otobong Nkanga, Ho Tzu Nyen, Boris Orlov, Damian Ortega, Anatoly Osmolovsky, Alexandra Paperno, Philippe Parreno, Giuseppe Penone, Sigmar Polke, Dmitry Prigov, Walid Raad, Gerhard Richter, Wael Shawky, Yinka Shonibare, Simon Starling, Hiroshi Sugimoto, Wolfgang Tillmans, Mikhail Tolmachev, Mario Garcia Torres, Danh Vo, Jessica Warboys, Apichatpong Weerasethakul and Arseny Zhilyaev.

General Rehearsal curatorial group from V-A-C and MMOMA: Elza Abdulkhakova, Tatyana Bagaeva, Katerina Chuchalina, Maria Doronina, Varvara Ganicheva, Diana Dzhangveladze, Anna Ilchenko, Daria Kalugina, Maria Kramar, Francesco Manacorda, Anna Panfilets, Andrey Parshikov, Anna Repina-Galenkina, Olga Stebleva, Polina Zotova

Guest Curator: Emilie Villez (Director of Kadist, Paris)


V-A-C produces new culture together with artists and audiences alike. It is a platform for open discussion aimed at redefining the contemporary landscape. Working with local communities, V-A-C promotes its exhibition, publishing, performative and learning programmes beyond all disciplinary boundaries and thus constantly resets the coordinates for dialogue within a new global geography. This methodology is employed in all V-A-C initiatives, taking place in its Venetian space, through international, cross-institutional partnerships and in its future home for arts and culture in Moscow, GES2.


Moscow Museum of Modern Art (MMOMA) was founded in 1999. It is the first state Russian museum that concentrates on the art of the 20th and 21st centuries. Today the Museum, with its seven venues in the historic centre of the city, plays a vital part in the Russian art scene. The Museum’s permanent collection represents major stages in the formation and development of the avant-garde, especially in Russia. One of the Museum’s priorities is to promote young and emerging artists, bringing them into the contemporary artistic process and to create inclusive projects.


We believe contemporary artists make an important contribution to a progressive society, their work often addressing key issues of our time. KADIST is a non-profit organization that encourages this engagement and is dedicated to extending the reach of artists represented in its collection to a global audience, thus facilitating new connections across cultures. Its programs develop collaborations with artists, curators and many art organizations around the world. Local programs in KADIST’s hubs of Paris and San Francisco include exhibitions, public events, residencies and educational initiatives. Complemented by an active online network, they aim at creating vibrant conversations about contemporary art and ideas.


The Theatre of Mutual Operations is an independent artist collective made up of Lyosha Lobanov, Xenia Peretrukhina and Shifra Kazhdan, joined for this project by producer Alexandra Moon. Focussing mainly on the visual aspects and working without any direction are key to the group. Their project entitled " Museum of Alien Assault" has been nominated for the 2018 Innovation Award. Theatre of Mutual Operations live and work in Moscow and Saint Petersburg.



Public Program. General Rehearsal: Act One.
25 April — 16 June 2018

25 April
Panel Discussion on General Rehearsal structure and themes
Led by V-A-C Artistic Director Francesco Manacorda, KADIST Foundation Director Emilie Villez, V-A-C curators Andrey Parshikov and Kirill Adibekov, artists from the Theater of Mutual Operations and Belgian artist Koenraad Dedobbeleer, who designed the display and scenography for General Rehearsal.

26 April
Opening day events
Unlearning Institutional Practice — online-lecture by Sepake Angiama, Head of Education of Manifesta and documenta, who joined V-A-C in 2018.
Russian debut of the performance work Warm Up (2015), by British artist Cally Spooner.
Ambient music pioneer Gigi Masin performs live in the Ballroom of MMOMA.

5, 12, 19, 28 May, 2, 9 June
Saturdays at General Rehearsal
Guided tours of the exhibition and animation classes for children from ages 3 to 8; a program designed by the curator of the Big Cartoon Festival Maria Aligozhina.

6, 13, 20, 29 May, 3, 10 June
Sundays at General Rehearsal
Guided tours and workshops on developing screenplay-writing skills for 9 to 14 yearolds, led by the artist and philologist Ilmira Bolotyan. This program was designed by Maria Krupnik, curator of the theater project for teenagers Class Act.

12 May
Film Screening
Russian debut of the film Ava (2017), a coming of age drama with the pace of a French New Wave film. Directed by Léa Mysius, the film was selected to participate in the Cannes Film Festival International Critics’ Week / La Semaine de la Critique.

15 May
Summer Term Reading Group: ‘People And Their Things. Things And Their People’ Run by Dmitry Potemkin, chief editor of the V-A-C publishing house, with the participation of the artist Alexey Buldakov.

15 and 29 May
Guided tour of the exhibition and discussion for older adults, organized by the art mediation team of General Rehearsal.

17 May
Live Performance
Led by Belgian artist Kobe Matthys, founder of Agency. Through his company set up in 1992, the artist collects and explores cases of misidentification and misinterpretation of objects and acts in the art world.

19 May
As part of the Night at the Museum special evening program
Shifra Kazhdan, member of the Theater of Mutual Operations leads a Q+A focused around a photograph of Vladislav Mamyshev-Monroe, portraying Akhmatova. Live performance by Autarkic, an electronic music producer from Tel Aviv, whose music has been released by the labels Disco Halal and Turbo.

22 May
Summer Term Reading Group
Run by Dmitry Potemkin, senior editor of the V-A-C publishing house, with the participation of the artist Kirill Savchenkov.

24 May
Poet and artist Pavel Arseniev on The Bi(bli)ography of the Object, or Literature at the Cross-section of the Socio-technical Assembly Line.

May 26
Theater of Mutual Operations, authors of the First Act of General Rehearsal, conduct a tour and discuss the concept of the exhibition in the form of a theater performance.

May 29
Summer Term Reading Group
Run by Dmitry Potemkin, senior editor of the V-A-C publishing house, with the participation of the artist Ivan Novikov.

31 May
Object-Oriented Sociology by Viktor Wachstein, celebrated sociologist and the Dean of the Faculty of Philosophy and Sociology at RANEPA (Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration).

1 June
Live performance
Canadian producer J. S. Aurelius, producer of noise recordings, using, among other things, software that generates interference for combat drones.

2 June
Film Screening and Talk
Russian premiere of the film Theater of War (2018), by the theater director and performer Lola Arias, and a talk with author of the film and critic Nika

5 June
Summer Term Reading Group
Run by Dmitry Potemkin, senior editor of the V-A-C publishing house, with the
participation of the artist Arseny Zhilyaev.

8 June
Live Concert
London based multi-instrumentalist duo Tomaga, performing a mixture of psychedelic
jazz and kraut-rock.

9-12 June
Live Performance
Parthenon Marbles (2015), by Romanian artist, choreographer and dancer Alexandra
Pirici, is performed over a four-day period.

Exact starting / finishing times of events can be found on the General Rehearsal website Admission to all events is free of charge upon registration. Changes and additions may be made to the program.


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