Russian-born conceptual artist Andrei Molodkin has collaborated with D.C based multi-media artist Robin Bell to project a video of Molodkin’s political artwork, White House Filled with the Blood of U.S. Citizens, onto the Trump Hotel in Washington, DC.
It was due to be projected onto the exterior of the Source Theatre in Washington DC.
‘As DC recently experienced a tragically violent weekend of protests, we will not be showing the work at our Source Theatre out of respect and concern for safety,’said Kristi Maiselman, executive director of CulturalDC.
The work was to be projected on the side of the theatre from 1st January 2021. Maiselman said CulturalDC worked with London-based arts organisation a/political, to find the new venue, which with its association with the president is probably more relevant than the initial venue chosen.
Bell and Molodkin identified The Trump Hotel as a pseudo-White House for the current administration – exemplifying the inextricable link between politics, money, personal power and ego.
Events over the past few weeks, specifically the attempted coup on January 6th and record death toll from COVID-19, have driven home the fact that people are both willing to die for their government, and are unwittingly sacrificed due to their government’s inactions. The artwork was produced in October 2019 as a forewarning of events to come and has lived up to its intentions in the current context. The American Democratic experiment requires informed participation and collective respect from both its civilians and elected officials, or we run the risk of devolving into senseless violence.
“The use of human blood is required to interrogate the existing political system. The White House is the symbolic heart of ‘Western’ democracy, and here we see it as it is, fueled by the blood of its citizens.”said artist Andrei Molodkin
Born in Russia in 1966, Molodkin now lives in France. He described the United States, where Covid-related deaths now exceed 377,000, as ‘a vampire state’. The human blood he used to flood an acrylic model of the White House in the creation of The White House Filled With the Blood of U.S. Citizens was donated by US citizens in France.
‘People came to give their blood for an ideology they can choose rather than giving their blood to a system that kills them. I never use my blood, my liquid or personality because I was born in a militarist country in a totalitarian regime.’Andrei Molodkin
The work was made possible by a partnership between a/political and CulturalDC. a/political explores radical knowledge through the principle of Cultural Terror, platforming voices that undermine the dominant narratives of our time. The collective collaborates with artists and agitators to produce projects previously thought unrealisable due to their subject matter, scale and complexity. a-political.org
CulturalDC supports innovative artists across all disciplines and makes their work accessible to diverse audiences. They provide unconventional space for relevant and challenging work that is essential to nurturing vibrant urban communities. culturaldc.org
About the Artists
Andrei Molodkin (born 1966) is a Russian born conceptual artist living and working in Paris, France. Molodkin was born in Buy, Kostroma Oblast, a small town in North-Western Russia. He served in the Soviet Army for two years from 1985-7 transporting missiles across Siberia. He later graduated from the Architecture and Interior design department at the Stroganov Moscow State University of Arts and Industry in 1992.
Building upon his formal training as a classical printmaker, Robin Bell developed a unique style of live video collage which he has performed at well-known venues, including The Kennedy Center, 9:30 Club, The Phillips Collection in Washington DC, Central Park Summer Stage in NYC, and The Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles California. Robin was the lead video editor for PBS television show Foreign Exchange with Fareed Zakaria. Also he taught video classes at the Corcoran College of Art and Design.
In 2005, Robin co-produced Operation Ceasefire, a seminal anti-war concert on the national mall. His feature length documentary, Positive Force: More Than a Witness: 30 Years of Punk Politics In Action, premiered in 2014. His incisive 2017 projection, Emoluments Welcome, on the face of the Trump Hotel in Washington DC garnered media attention from the BBC, CNN, New York Times, L.A. Times, Huffington Post and Hyperallergic, among others.