Igor Kazakov
Project Director

Four years ago, we came up with the idea of commissioning contemporary artists to create covers for BoscoMagazine. We wanted to introduce all our readers, the whole Bosco family, to the fascinating and for many people still unexplored world of contemporary art. Back in 2015, even in our wildest dreams, we could not have even imagined what our project would become with time.

In selecting which artists to engage in the project, we immediately set the bar quite high for ourselves, in our opinion. We have a chance to work with outstanding major artists of today who realized many exceptional projects, who participated in international exhibitions, who achieved unconditional recognition, and who experienced commercial success. We presented all of the participating artists with our traditional theme – the theme of family – as a creative subject and gave them full freedom in interpreting and realizing this theme in their artworks. The artists have produced a series of distinct pieces in various techniques, and of different scales. At the same time, all their works are united by a single, immediately recognizable concept.

Having brought together such a fine group of artists under one project, we could not miss the opportunity to hold an exhibition of their artworks. Besides the pieces commissioned for the cover of BoscoMagazine, we asked each artist to create and fill the space of their personal pavilion. Thus, our festival is fundamentally 15 mini-personal exhibitions each of which was arranged in accordance with the creative ideas of the project’s participants. Thanks to the timely help and assistance of the Cherry Forest Festival, we were able to realize this unique endeavor here, at GUM on Red Square.

The important mission of GUM-Red-Line is to involve the public into the world of contemporary artists and topical art. Over 3 million people will have a chance to see the exhibition during the festival. In most cases, these people won’t be familiar with contemporary art and will probably encounter artworks of this type for the first time in his or her life. To help the public to familiarize itself with the large-scale and interesting world of contemporary art, we organized an extensive excursion program which will be running during the whole festival. We also introduced video interviews that will allow artists to directly address their audience from informational stands that are placed near each pavilion. We want to catch the interest of all people, even those customers who are just buying ice-cream near the GUM Fountain and don’t know anything about either the exhibition or contemporary art in general. It’s not guaranteed that they will grow to love contemporary art, but it is important to us that they don’t feel indifferent to contemporary art. We will just have to wait and see what effect we can achieve.

In parallel with holding the exhibition, we are establishing at the Third Floor, First Line an art gallery under the same name – GUM-Red-Line – with the backing of GUM and the assistance of Bosco di Ciliegi. We see this gallery as a natural step in the development of our project within the space of the department store. One should not limit oneself to marveling at contemporary art in museums but also buy it in specialized stores.

We have already planned a number of ambitious art projects in different formats: exhibitions, installations, performance art. I do hope that the ardent passion we, being somewhat amateurs in the field of art, display in this adventurous endeavor will translate into the most unexpected yet welcome projects and that we will bring our public new joys and surprises.