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MosChaos Project

2011–2013 | Founder, artist, curator | MosChaos | Moscow

MosChaos was the home space of the Saturnaliy Foundation. An original industrial building of the XIX century in the historic Baumansky district of Moscow, in the factory area, guarded by real Cossacks. When the Foundation team first entered the doors of MosChaos, it was a half-abandoned warehouse with three empty floors of a thousand square meter each, without windows or heating, all covered with concrete dust.

The name “MosChaos” is read back as “Chaosmos”, a word combination of “chaos” and “cosmos”. It is a term first introduced by James Joyce in “Finnegans Wake”, later taken up by Deleuze and Guattari and Umberto Eco. Joyce used it to describe “cosmos at the verge of chaos, one that is surging toward the exciting possibility of going out of existence, struggling onward at the edge of the existential abyss”. Yet, chaos is not the same as disorder, quite the opposite. Chaotic systems are in fact quite orderly, following very deterministic patterns, in fact, order is born in chaos. Deleuze and Guattari point out that “Chaos has three daughters – art, science, and philosophy – as forms of thought or creation”.

This is exactly what happened – a certain organizational order was born in MosChaos. It became such a space where contemporary art practices, amateur and outsider art, different forms and genres of dance, rock and folk music, cinematography, modern literature, fashion, martial arts, Chinese tea ceremonies, Western and Eastern philosophical schools, all intertwined to form a perfectly balanced “life-creating” complex.

Two major events were held at MosChaos – the First Moscow Saturnalia on a day of winter solstice 2012 and “Tetractys” exhibition, timed with autumnal equinox of 2013. And in between these two events, the space just lived the life of its own. "Meeting of the Emperor of Heaven”, “Magpies”, "Night at the Museum" – events were highlighted and named mainly for the purpose of minimal structuring and organization of life and for PR in order to attract a larger audience and consolidate reputation.

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