TOTART: Natalia Abalakova & Anatoly Zhigalov




1984, May

Location: Tartu Museum, then at the end of the lecture on TOTART Tartu streets and the city park

After the lecture on TOTART the audience is suggested to make a chain by taking a long rope and walk by the city streets after Totartists as long as they can endure all the peripetias of the journey.

            This action takes place at the end of the official part of the vernissage or during one of the animation/programmation. The initiator of the action offers those in attendance to grab onto a rope (100-150 m long) and form a single chain. During this time the first part of the TEXT will be heard either on tape or over microphone. Reading of the TEXT should be drawn out over the time necessary for realizing the first phase of the action, or expanded by improvization (10-15 minutes). The second phase begins with the second part of the TEXT. After it has been heard the initiator of the action leads those who have grabbed the rope out of the building and onto the street, where he leaves them in various situations. This is done by personal choice. Duration of the “walk” is left up to the initiator (or until the last person lets go of the rope). After completion of the action the rope and the TEXT may be exhibited as object d’art.


Here at this feast of free creative expression, where have gathered true evaluators of Art, we offer a unique chance to create an authentic work and to participate in the very essence of creativity. All problems of modern Art are an attempt to overcome alienation of the subject of creativity from the object of creativity, to overcome the eternal gap between the spectator and the work, between the spectator and the artist. All these problems are now removed, when all of you, inspired by the most sublime ideas about the role of Art and designation of artist, have grabbed hold of the rope and formed a single chain and field of tension where pure creative energy is accumulating. In this moment all of you are creators of a true creative space and purely creative act.


            Art, however, is not a divertissement – and if pleasure is its goal – then it is better to visit a bordello or tavern. Making a field of exceptional creative activity, you create simultaneously a field of human solidarity and responsibility. You are responsible for those standing next to you and, by leaving the chain, you weaken the potential of the energized creative field. One for all and all for one – such is the law of the collective, corporate body, of which you are now part. Now before you is the unique possibility to know thyself, your allegiance to Art, to your neighbors, and the ideals of humanism.

Thus, forward, be brave and faithful and let the feeling of solidarity and brotherhood be your guide.

Forward! Long live Total Artistic Action!




TOTART: Actions, performances. Installations