Current

Exhibitions
The Wende Museum at The Armory, Culver City, California
Sunday, June 23, 2019 - Sunday, October 20, 2019

What was on TV in the Soviet Bloc? If “propaganda” is your immediate response, Watching Socialism will complicate the picture with excerpts from news programs, sitcoms, cartoons, subversive interventions, and other televised content alongside TV-related magazines, artifacts, toys, and television sets from the Eastern Bloc, showing what it was really like to watch TV on the other side of the Iron Curtain.

Exhibitions
The Wende Museum at The Armory, Culver City, California
Sunday, June 23, 2019 - Sunday, October 20, 2019

Look beyond the binary framework of the U.S./Soviet Cold War at the Nonaligned Movement (NAM), which pushed for peaceful coexistence and justice for all the world’s peoples. Nonalignment and Tito in Africa presents photographs from the 1950s through 1970s of state visits to various African nations by Josip Broz Tito, the Yugoslav leader who was a founding member of NAM and cultivated a reputation for transnational solidarity and hopes for a “third way” beyond U.S.-style capitalism and Soviet-style communism. Yet these carefully staged photographs of meetings of heads of state reveal the still-relevant challenges of both framing and enacting solidarity amid uneven power relations.   

Exhibitions
The Wende Museum at The Armory, Culver City, California
Sunday, September 29, 2019 - Sunday, January 26, 2020

Stas Orlovski’s Running Man transforms the guardhouse from a symbol of surveillance and oppression into a magic lantern where disparate histories merge, intermingle and collide. Orlovski occupies the guardhouse with 3 projected, stop-motion animations that explore themes of loss, memory and migration. Drawing on the structure's Cold War past and its current proximity to Sony Picture Studios, the work references Russian children's books, Soviet era animation, Malevich’s Suprematism, Hans Richter’s experimental films and Eadweard Muybridge’s early motion pictures. 

Exhibitions
The Wende Museum at The Armory, Culver City, California
Sunday, November 10, 2019 - Sunday, April 5, 2020

Medea: controversial archetype of female strength and passion from the East. In the years before the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, East European writers and painters often turned to ancient mythology to express their discontent with authoritarian rule. Their interpretations of mythological figures like Medea, Cassandra, and Penthesilea were crucial in shaping contemporary images for women, and sometimes they were straight-up punk. Working under the radar of the accepted art establishment, the artists in this exhibition provoked, protested, played with fire, and experimented while refusing socialist and bourgeois stereotypes. The Medea Insurrection pairs countercultural women artists from Cold War-era Eastern Europe with contemporary subversive women artists from Southern California. Organized in collaboration with the Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden, and guest curator Susanne Altmann. 

Exhibitions
The Wende Museum at The Armory, Culver City, California
Sunday, April 26, 2020 - Sunday, October 25, 2020

The series of (mostly) peaceful revolutions that took down the Berlin Wall effectively ended state socialism in Eastern Europe, and brought not just a political but also a material transformation. Countless people who lived through socialism discarded the household and consumer items they had lived with and loved or hated for many years, as they finally had access to higher-standard goods. This exhibition presents the metamorphosis of household and consumer goods from objects of everyday life to items in a museum collection, by way of flea markets, and invites contemporary artists to position them in the here and now.

Exhibitions
The Wende Museum at The Armory, Culver City, California
Sunday, April 26, 2020 - Sunday, October 25, 2020

Proving that photography is no more “objective” than any other medium, two photographers with the same mission offer very different views of East Germany. Through reports published by Stern, unpublished photographs, and documents and photos from the Stasi archives (both photographers were closely monitored by the East German secret police), this exhibition highlights Thomas Höpker and Harald Schmitt’s very different approaches to East German life, culture, and society.

Exhibitions
The Wende Museum at The Armory, Culver City, California
Sunday, November 15, 2020 - Sunday, April 25, 2021

With their colorful surfaces and clear-cut symbols and images, flags and banners are effective carriers of unambiguous messages. At parades, party conventions, and demonstrations they convey a sense of political purpose and group identity. In the communist countries, flags symbolically represented the various organizations, institutions, and collectives that were considered the pillars of society. However, flags and banners can take on other, countercultural meanings as well. In the late 1980s, political dissidents cut out the socialist symbols at the center of the East German, Hungarian, and Romanian national flags. In this exhibition, the Wende Museum’s unique collection of Soviet Bloc flags will be paired with contemporary artwork, showcasing a wide range of uses for this medium.

Exhibitions
The Wende Museum at The Armory, Culver City, California
Sunday, November 15, 2020 - Sunday, April 25, 2021

In the fall of 1981, Bill Aron, the “Dean” of American Jewish photographers, visited the cities of Leningrad, Minsk, and Moscow. In each city, Aron photographed the local synagogue – which served as the common ground for Soviet Jews who were trying to hold on to, or regain, their religious heritage – as well as Jews who wished to leave the country, the so-called refuseniks. He also made striking portraits of the Soviet Jewish population at home and in public life. Aron’s photos will be paired with artist Yevgeniy’s Fiks’s images and artifacts from Birobidzhan, the Jewish autonomous region in the Soviet Union near the border with China.

Exhibitions
The Wende Museum at The Armory, Culver City, California
Sunday, May 16, 2021 - Sunday, October 17, 2021

In addition to art and artifacts, museums present knowledge, aiming to simultaneously educate and entertain the public. But where do museums get their information from? And how do they turn historical facts into an exhibition narrative? Traversing the minefield of postmodern relativism, on the one hand, and “alternative facts,” on the other, this exhibition explores how “facts” are constructed while aiming to restore the arena for informed interpretation and conversation.  


Exhibitions
The Wende Museum at The Armory, Culver City, California
Sunday, May 16, 2021 - Sunday, October 17, 2021

In the 1960s, as decolonization took place across the African continent and the civil rights movement heated up in the United States, Soviet political caricaturists published numerous anti-racist cartoons that captured these global events. This exhibition will feature a selection of these caricatures from the Ne boltai! poster archive in Prague, including original drawings by prominent Soviet caricaturists such as Boris Efimov, the principal political caricaturist for Izvestiia, and Mark Abramov, the principal political caricaturist for Pravda