Dmitri Gutov - Andrei Kovalev (Moscow Art Magazine)
Moscow Art Magazine: You are famous for the strict Marxist ideas, but they are not reflected in your art, Why?
Dmitry Gutov: Simply I hate my art. Any time I am looking at my work I think - my God, I have experienced so many things, I had experienced storms and winds. And that is all left. My timid, fragrant metaphysical constructions are the acceptance of my own uncertainty and alarm.
MAM. Does it somehow correlate with the period of political double sensitiveness we are experiencing now?
DG: Better to say, have experienced. A mad average man has won. It is clear that for a long time. That's why everything I have done, is exhausted. Before it was possible to have no strict views.
MAM: Is it easy to work now?
DG: Vise versa. The degree of my inner violence is so high that it can't be already formed. There are things unachievable for the plastic feeling.
MAM: The world-historical meaning of Marxism consists of the fact that it is an absolutely eternal textbook of power that means of violence. It is wonderful that it is attributed as an intellectual construction only when it is repressed itself. What has changed inside the society and inside you?
DG: Nothing has changed inside me. 1 just have understood that I can't wait for anything positive. The world is being constructed where there won't be a place for me. The world without a place for art. There are things impossible to work with. Artists are powerless in front of the prose of greediness and saving.
MAM: How have you become a Marxist in such bad conditions?
DG: I could not read Lenin till not long ago. I have a lot of unpleasant memories connected with this subject. Besides, in order to learn how to understand simple texts, you have to make some efforts. When Lifshits give a title for his book "Kari Marx. Art and Social ideal", he doesn't leave even a small loophole to the narrow mind. No surface effects, nothing fashionable. That is the style I like most of all.
MAM: You have started to appreciate these texts when they became dead?
DG: Of all I know they are the most alive ones. The more bourgeois banality integrates into the life tissue, the more the sense of these books will become easier for understanding.
MAM: In real politics, whom are you with, comrade artist?
DG: I am voting for Zuganov's party. In a general list - it's a leftist part of the specter. Osmolovsky has presented me Zuganov's book and the amount of dumb nationalistic rhetoric's there is more than any critical dose. Why have such kind of communists - they promise to support traditional religion form and cite "Vekhi". So I vote for the title and not for the idea. But the word "communist party" is good.
MAM: So, you are for the real revolution?
DG: What kind of revolution can we have? To stand with a naked bottom in front of the burnt White House? I am against this petty-bourgeois anarchy. For me-art is a human's notion of a better life. That's why art is connected with communist ideals. As far as the revolution is concerned, I am absolutely sure, that history has sense, and one has to be responsible for every dumb action, hostile to a human being. When life is set the way when those win who is interested in nothing but his own profit, retribution is inevitable.
MAM: I think Buddha spoke that way but not Marx.
DG: Once Engels said that the mankind had started to think dialectically long before it had started to understand consciously a dialectical method.
MAM: As a Marxist, do you feel yourself an artist-politician? What's your attitude towards political art?
DG: I think that it is just a degenerated art, as a politics is a field of absolute decay.
MAM: What's your attitude towards international art circle?
DG: It's very boring. One shouldn't look for esthetical experience there. It's better to open "Eugeny Onegin" one more time. I can see nothing there, but the truth of the Marx' idea that capitalism is hostile for art and poetry. If anybody takes it as a catastrophe, we have a chance to change something.
MAIVI: So, you are constructing your strategy in accordance with this point of view?
DG: I am constructing nothing. I am not thinking about it. I am against all discussions on strategies. A strategy is a fortune of doggy people, who are not worried of the essence. There are things valuable for me and which are worth doing something.
MAM: So, you are an Eurocommunist?
DG: If you are speaking about an academical understanding of the Marxism as one methodology among other, it's not my position.
MAM: As far as I know, the esthetical study of the orthodox Marxism is based upon the theory of reflection. What do you reflect in your art?
DG: The question of reflection is explored in Marxism much more profoundly than it seems to our thinkers. I do not reflect the world but it is reflected inside me. If it wants it reflects, if not - it doesn't. The reality itself is very active.
MAM: Why doesn't it want to reflect?
DG: Bourgeois world is so disgusting that it is better not to look at it. That's why even impressionists tried to dissolve their vision. This world has a very low coefficient of reflection. Do you know that there are women who always look badly at the photos. And the bourgeois world looks too polished and disgustingly flat. It's difficult to depict the world, which has no historical truth. One can be inspirited only by the struggle with all this abomination.
MAM: Could you tell me, aren't you confused by the people under red flags?
DG: Certainly they are half-fledged. But the art, which forgets about them, will become even worse.
Moscow Art Magazine, 1994, No. 4, p. 43