[Marxism] The Wayland Rudd Collection: the Red and the Black | Louis Proyect: The Unrepentant Marxist

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Mon Jan 20 11:19:22 MST 2014

For a number of years now, Russian émigré artist Yevgeniy Fiks has been 
examining the cultural legacy of the USSR, both within its borders and 
in the U.S. Although politically to the left, Fiks is no simple 
dispenser of Soviet nostalgia as is prominently on display in the Back 
to USSR restaurant in Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn. (But if you ever find 
yourself there, don’t miss the Red Snapper. It is to die for.)

No, Fiks’s interest is in revealing the contradictions of being a 
Communist, if I might be indulged in using a bit of Marxist/Hegelian 
jargon. In his last show at the Winkleman Gallery on far West 27th 
Street, an area that was devastated by Hurricane Sandy, he focused in on 
the Red/Gay hysteria of the 1950s when being a Commie and a “fag” was 
deemed inimical to American values. As anybody familiar with the Soviet 
Union can attest, gays had it just as bad. Despite the early Soviet 
Union’s openness to different forms of sexual identity, Stalin’s 
counter-revolution included a law enacted in 1933 that made 
homosexuality punishable by a 5-year prison term.


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