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2008 Faculty Development Grant
In October 2008 I received a faculty development grant that allowed me to spend 6 days in Russia. I took part in the exhibition IN TRANSITION RUSIA that opened in Ekaterinburg on October 16 until November 16, 2008. The exhibition will also travel to Moscow, to the National Center for Contemporary Art from November 22 to December 22 2008.
I spent the first night in London at the home of Susan Barnet, and the next day we flew together to Moscow, where we were guests of the Center for Contemporary Art for two nights. During the day we spent some time walking around the Red Square, the Kremlin, Lenin's mausoleum, and having tea in Gum, the famous shopping mall.Our flight from Moscow to Ekaterinburg was very late, so when we arrived we were taken directly to the Ural Gorky University where we both gave talks about our work to the students of visual studies there. The conversation afterwards was more about how things are in the US than about my work. All of this was done though an interpreter, who was one of the students. We stayed in the very nice Central Hotel for four nights. My most vivid memory will be of the suffocating heat in the room. Every indoor space in Russia, including the university, is heated to 80 degrees. Outside: 30 degrees.
The exhibition and conference started the next day and it was called "In Transition: Cultural Identities in the Age of Transnational and Transcultural Flux." My conference presentation was in the section of "Artists Talks" and it was very well received. There was also simultaneous translation there between English and Russian. These were the two basic languages. All in all, a fantastic experience. For me the highlight was going to lunch in the student cafeteria with some graduate women students from the Germanic Languages department who had been asked to do the simultaneous translation of the conference talks.