In the Russian East
Richard Avedon’s “In the American West” is widely regarded as a landmark project in photographic history and a definitive expression of the power of photographic art. For “In the American West”, Avedon travelled throughout five summers, meeting and photographing the plain people of the West: ranch workers, roustabouts, bar girls, drifters, and gamblers. With this images and concept in his mind, Monteleone emulates Richard Avedon’s work in the Russian East, in an historical moment of high uncertainty in the relationships between the two countries. As Avedon he concentrates on simple people, far from Moscow and the political power, who like modern Oblomov are not interested in it. In those faraway regions the nationalistic echoes sound feebly, the consequences are imperceptible and the economy rhythms beat in different hour zones. Subject as descendants of gold miners, survivors from gulag, jews of the Siberian Israel and even heirs of millennial empire as the Buryats or the Mongolians after Genghis Khan, become icons of contemporary Russia in the portraits by Monteleone. The exhibitions “The April Theses” and “In the Russian East” are realized in cooperation with Heillandi Gallery, Lugano.