On sabbatical 2022/2023
I am currently completing a monograph titled Reorientalism: From Avant-Garde to National Form. Drawing upon extensive archival sources, it explores theoretical works, prose fiction, children’s books, film scripts, photo books, and documentary and feature films by Viktor Shklovsky, Andrei Platonov, Aleksandr Rodchenko, Varvara Stepanova, Dziga Vertov, and Sergei Eisenstein. Key experimenters with visual form, language, and sound during the 1920s, these figures channeled their creative energy eastwards, towards the Soviet Orient, in the 1930s and early 1940s. The study attempts to bring into amplified visibility the new life of the Russian modernist tradition in the period which ostensibly repressed and decimated it.