Blue Noses are known for their satirical and provocative videos, photographs and performances which parody and critique Russia's past and its present day capitalist boom. Their targets include political leaders, sexual and political correctness , and the platitudes of art history.
An attempt to ban the Paris exhibition Sots-Art / Political Art in Russia triggered an uproar and scandal because of a photograph of two policemen kissing in a snow-covered forest as well as images of men striking sexual poses while wearing masks depicting semi-naked Russian President Vladimir Putin, US President George W. Bush, al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden and others. It led to discussions during the recent summit talks between presidents Putin and Sarkozy. Russia's Culture Minister Alexander Sokolov publicly denounced artists Mizin and Shaburov calling their photo Kissing Policemen pornographic and "a shame of Russia". More than 50 works of Blue Noses (17 items according to the official inventory) were also withdrawn from Sots-Art exhibition. The term was coined in 1972 by two Moscow artists, Vitaly Komar and Alexander Melamid, as a take on Pop Art, "Sots" being a contraction of Socialism and Art.
Guelman Gallery Web Site
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