Treivas Architecture Buro

Zamaninda. Russian avant-garde in Baku


The exhibition Upon Request. The Russian Avant-Garde Collection of the Regional Museums. 1900–1930, hosted in Baku is the starting point of international activity for the Jewish Museum and Tolerance Centre.

Kazemir Malevich. Quadrilateral and the circle. 1915.

Zamaninda (an equivalent name of the exhibition in Azerbaijani) is located in the Heydar Aliyev Centre built by Zaha Hadid Architects. Just like Russian avant-garde artists, we have based our stage design on the breakaway from classical rules and traditions by rejecting sentimental architectural setting, extraneous both to the theme and the building.

The only relevant allusion is to Stanley Kubrick’s ‘2001: A Space Odyssey’ — one can imagine a space ship taking onboard the main treasures of the Russian avant-garde.

Light is at the heart of the exhibition’s scenography. The area had a black textile ceiling with spotlights. We proposed to replace it with ambient lighting, which is an up to date solution in the world museum practice. 

This technique was given a twist: joining the partitioning elements with the general floodlight and room for exhibition labels, we have managed to meet several objectives while creating an illusion of soaring in zero gravity.

Project authors