One of the famous slogans of the May protests in Paris in 1968 was a student reply to theorizing university professors: “Structures don’t take to the streets and don’t build barricades.” Meaning that freedom and the opportunity to change something are not in offices, galleries and audiences, but in open air, in squares, avenues and alleys.
The protagonist of Maksim Shved’s film Pure Art, the abstract artist Zakhar Kudin, also takes to the streets. Inspired by the colorful rectangles with which municipal workers paint over any writings on the walls of Minsk buildings, the artist creates abstract paintings in the open air. At the same time, this unusual art practice provokes passers-by to engage in dialogue—about art, about freedom, about history and about the shared future.
Filmmaker Maksim Shved and film critic Maksim Karpitski will discuss the political (in) cinema, art as a way to go beyond the limits of established structures, the phenomenon of municipal service art, streets and liberties.
Maksim Shved was born in 1979 in Minsk, Belarus. After graduating from the Law Department of the Belarusian State University, he decided to study film directing. He graduated from the St. Petersburg High School of Directors & Screenwriters in 2013 and the Wajda School, Documentary Programme, in 2016. Now he directs documentary series for television. In his free time he creates and develops social videos.
Maksim Karpitski is a film critic, member of the editorial board of the online journal on auteur cinema Cineticle. His writing is published in several publications. He is the coordinator of the international short film festival Cinema Perpetuum Mobile (2014–18), organizer and participant of cultural events. He is a member of the FIPRESCI International Federation of Film Critics. He lives in Minsk.