The Desert of Forbidden Art
Event: Mar 11, 2012
6:00pm - 8:00pm


Please join us for a film screening:
By Amanda Pope & Tchavdar Georgiev

This incredible story of how a treasure trove of banned Soviet art worth millions of dollars was stashed in a far-off desert of Uzbekistan develops into a larger exploration of how art survives in times of oppression.

During the Soviet regime, a small group of artists remain true to their vision despite threats of torture, imprisonment, and death. Their plight inspires young Igor Savitsky, a frustrated painter of aristocratic extraction who’d landed in Karakalpakstan (Uzbekistan’s autonomous northwestern republic) as an archaeologist. He became fascinated by the region’s folk art. Decades of Sovietization had devalued such distinctively ethnic artifacts to the point that collecting elaborate handmade garments, jewelry, carpets, and the like initially got Savitsky branded a “rubbish man.” Yet he eventually obtained funds to open a museum in 1966 for those objects. Its location far from Moscow censorship also allowed him to pursue what became his real passion: finding and acquiring modern art so out of sync with official taste that it was virtually banned.  (80 minutes)  Admission FREE. Refreshments provided.

Seating is limited. For more information or to rsvp contact

  • 3718 St. Claude Avenue
    New Orleans, LA 70117

  • Press Street’s MiniPlex program is a platform for film screenings and additional time based media events that take place in a pop-up theatre within Antenna Gallery. MiniPlex hosts screenings in collaboration with other outside projects and organizations as well as individual artists and filmmakers. For more information please contact Amanda at

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    Dec 12
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