A project about learning to see the city differently

The art residence called New Stories of Ekaterinburg was born in the Metenkov House Museum of Photography in 2016, after the museum won the grant competition of the Vladimir Potanin Foundation. In the first season, seven artists from Russia, Ukraine and Germany came to the city in turns. Each of them presented an exhibition or an installation about Ekaterinburg based on their stay in the Urals. Though the residence program was extended in November 2017, its participants are targeted artists—both from the Urals and Europe.

The program was meant to bring fresh visual images of urban life into view, to introduce the local community to the opportunities of photography as a tool of investigating the city territories, to draw attention to the need for finding new ways of talking about different places and showing pictures, and also to involve different groups of residents in the creation of visual art.

Each of the artists invited to the art residence works in the Ural capital and other cities and towns of the Sverdlovsk Region, interacting with museum curators and local residents. The results of this interaction are projects embodied in the format of exhibitions and installations telling about the today's life of the city.
In just 5 years, there have been 20 residents from Russia, Germany, Switzerland, and the Netherlands.

Anastasia Martynova, head of the Metenkov House museum, shares the details.

In 2019, Kristina Gorlanova, the author of the New Stories of Ekaterinburg project, launched the Association of Art Residences of Russian with the support of the Vladimir Potanin Foundation. At the moment, this informal professional association consists of over 30 art residences. Its main task is to ensure cooperation and exchange of experience among representatives of resident programs.

As the project website states, "Art residencies are a way to support artists, writers, curators, and other specialists in the cultural field by providing them with the time, space, resources, and opportunities for fruitful work. They often require the change of surroundings. Art residencies can establish conditions both for solitude and concentration and for studying local cultural, historical, geographical, and social specifics, communication and cooperation with other artists, researchers, and experts in other fields, interaction with the local public, etc. In many cases, residents build connections between cities, countries, and cultures, and art residencies themselves allow them to deepen and expand their knowledge."
In 2022, the art residence at the Metenkov House changed its name and concept. Metenkov New Practices are focused upon the personality of Veniamin Metenkov, an Ural photographer who once lived and worked in the building that is currently occupied by the museum. Who was that man? How do we tell our audience about him and what he, a photographer from a century ago, has in common with contemporary photographers? These are the questions we want to find answers to. At the same time, within the framework of art residences, we are also interested in researchers, artists, writers, photographers, curators, and other authors who can work in interdisciplinary genres, deal with archives, private stories, and documents. We are interested in their expertise and approaches.
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