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Museum of Pictorial Culture

Publication: Lev Manovich and Julian Sunley, Tangible Territory journal, issue 2, 2021.


Although we usually assume think that first museum of modern art was MoMA (New York, 1929), an earlier museum called Museum of Pictorial Culture was established in 1919 and run by most important Russian avant-garde artists until its closing in 1929. Our essays discuss innovative museum concepts developed by these artists, and point out their relevance to recent museum experiments in presenting their collections online using visualization methods.

The Museum founders included Kandinsky, Malevich, Rodchenko, Tatlin and other artists.The research questions and goals of the museum included the following: 1) How to best represent modern art? What artists should a new museum collect? 2) How to facilitate the research of artists in residence in the museum? 3) How to develop a scientific approach for studying both contemporary and historical art? 4) How should works be shown in a museum? (Accordingly, the artists were experimenting with different systems for organizing works spatially and temporally.)

Article  2021