Selected works
Special projects

Moscow City Government
Moscow City Department of Culture
Russian Academy of Arts
Moscow Museum of Modern Art
in conjunction with
Research Museum of the Russian Academy of Arts, St. Petersburg
Surikov Moscow State Academic Arts Institute

Étude to Art Object
Experimental Exhibition Marking The 10th Anniversary of The Moscow Museum of Modern Art
Date: February 14 – September 6, 2009
Venue: Petrovka 25

Curated by Anna Arutyunyan, Andrey Egorov

Architecture: Bernaskoni Bureau

The main building of the Moscow Museum of Modern Art at 25 Petrovka Street is hosting “Étude to Art Object”, a large-scale experimental display focused on works by Russian artists from the Museum’s permanent collection. For the first time ever, the Museum exhibits its holdings united by a single thematic program that allows demonstrating a considerable variety of artworks assembled by the Museum and unveil a number of pieces unseen by the public.

The main reference point of the project is étude, or study. In the strict sense of the word, it is a “subordinate” type of visual art that is executed from nature with a goal of learning its rules. To this day, étude plays a crucial role in academic fine arts education. To match the traditional notion of étude with pioneering practices of contemporary art – here lies the main intrigue of the “Étude to Art Object” display. In this case, étude is a metaphor for a distinctive creative method of the artist, which aims at exploring not only really existing objects, but conceptual features as well. The novelty of curatorial approach consists in a wider interpretation of the étude phenomenon, in its understanding as a flexible and many-sided aesthetic category that can be applied both to preparatory sketches and to finished works of art.

The versatile Museum collection and the thoroughly planned itinerary of the display make it possible to trace how certain traits of étude reveal themselves in the contradictory world of the 20th and 21st-century art. Among these traits are: photographic verisimilitude, repetition of motifs, references to classical tradition, demonstration of laws of motion, the issue of artistic language as such, etc.

The route of the intellectual journey through the display is logically structured by three general thematic sections: “Canon”, “Natura” and “Metamorphoses”. The first section presents model examples of étude, such as graphic studies and academic paintings. In the next zone, the notion of the etude receives a broad interpretation: works that are on view here may belong to different genres, but all of them explore nature and its principles. Finally, the visitor enters into the space of play and fantasy, where the very idea of the étude is splintered into several conceptual aspects summarized in certain tag-words. Accordingly, the “Metamorphoses” section includes six consecutive parts: “Hyper-reality”, “Repetition”, “Classics!”, “Motion Mechanics”, “Geometry of Form”, and “Language Exercises”. All these aspects, illustrated by works from the Museum’s holdings, reveal at times surprising affinity with dominant interests of contemporary artists.

The display consists of more than three hundred works executed in various media: from traditional painting, graphics, sculpture and photography to kinetic objects and video installations. In direct proximity, artists are arrayed who often seem to stand at polar extremities in terms of their creative intentions. Among them are: AES+F, Alexander Archipenko, Konstantin Batynkov, Leonid Borisov, Pavel Chistyakov, Semyon Faibisovich, Andrey Goncharov, Eduard Gorokhovsky, Andrey Grositsky, Francisco Infante, Vyacheslav Koleychuk, Valery Koshlyakov, Oleg Kulik, Mikhail Larionov, Igor Makarevich, Kazimir Malevich, Tatyana Nazarenko, Timur Novikov, Viktor Pivovarov, George Pousenkoff, Leonid Purygin, Oskar Rabin, Aidan Salakhova, Vasili Shukhaev, Sergey Shutov, Igor Snegur, Vinogradov and Dubosarsky, Dmitry Zhilinsky, and many others.

Apart from works from the collection of the Moscow Museum of Modern Art, the display is enriched with pieces from the Research Museum of the Russian Academy of Arts in St. Petersburg and the Surikov Moscow State Academic Arts Institute.

The design of the display was created by Boris Bernaskoni, one of the most promising young architects in Moscow, praised for his singular approach to exhibition architecture. His stylish and purist solution, without distracting attention from the artworks on view, helps to clarify the structure of the project and guides the visitor on the way from “Étude to Art Object”.

Main Sponsor:

Enel Worldwide

Enel is an international group that produces, distributes and sells electricity and gas in 22 countries over four continents: Italy, Spain, Portugal, France, Greece, Slovakia, Romania, Bulgaria, Russia, Morocco, the United States, Canada, Guatemala, Mexico, Costa Rica, El Savador, Panama, Colombia, Peru, Brazil, Chile and Argentina. With its 30,000 MW in plants using renewable energy sources (hydroelectric, geothermal, wind, solar, and biomass) across the world, Enel is a global leader in the sector.

Enel has launched an investment plan worth 7.4 billion euros between 2008-2012 for the development of renewable sources, innovative energy efficiency projects for consumers and advanced research programmes into hydrogen and solar energy and CO2 capture and storage. The plan is one of the most wide-reaching and high-quality attempts to fight climate change yet undertaken anywhere in the world.

Enel Overview

With its 52 million customers, Enel is Italy’s largest electricity company, and Europe’s second largest listed utility by installed capacity with around 82,300 MW. Enel produces and sells electricity mostly in Europe, North America, and Latin America.

Enel Group's net overall production over in 2007 is equal to 259.7 TWh. Enel is also Italy’s second largest natural gas distributor, with 6.8 billion m3 of gas sold in 2007. The company has 85,966* employees worldwide, operating a highly diversified power plant park, including hydroelectric, thermoelectric, nuclear, geothermal, windpower and photovoltaic power plants, and who oversee the distribution and sale of electricity and gas.

Enel in Russia

Enel participates in the vast process for the privatization and development of the electricity sector, having become Russia’s first vertically-integrated foreign operator. It is actually present in upstream gas, as well as in electricity production, distribution and sale.


Currently, Enel owns 55.8% of JCS Fifth Generation Company of the Wholesale Electricity Market, OGK-5 (owner of 4 thermoelectric plants for about 8,700 MW). It has also signed a Memorandum of Understanding with RosAtom regarding nuclear generation; from 2004 to September 2007, in partnership with the local private group ESN Energo, Enel has managed, the St. Petersburg’s NWTPP (North-West Thermal Power Plant), a gas-fired combined-cycle plant, of which it has doubled the production capacity, taking it to 900 MW.

Upstream Gas

Jointly with the SeverEnergia consortium (in which Enel holds a 40%, and Eni a 60% stake), it won a tender for the acquisition of a group of assets from Artikgas, Urenegoil and Neftetechnologia, in the upstream gas sector. The assets are located in the Urengoy region.


In November 2006, Enel signed an agreement with BelgorodEnergo for a pilot project to install 1,500 electronic meters. Following the successful completion of the project, the next step is to cover the entire Belgorod region, which is located 600 kilometers south of Moscow. With a population of 1.5 million, the region’s customer base numbers approximately 680,000 potential users.


Jointly with its local partner ESN, Enel holds a 49.5%stake in RES (RusEnergoSbyt), which is Russia’s largest independent electricity trading company, providing energy to the country’smajor industrial customers.

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