In 2008, with support from Vostochnaya Gallery, a group of street artists in Moscow began to use an old shipping container as a mobile gallery. It soon became the base for guerrilla urban re-planning activities in Moscow. Equipped with supplies for urban interventionists the container began functioning as a mobile art and activism studio.
Photo: Vika Ushakova
On September 24, an opening was held for the Residence. Participating artists shared materials necessary to create works in the city: paint, tools, a bicycle trailer, a mattress, a small supply of food, boards, plywood, cardboard, paper, buckets, and boxes. At the end of the day, the container was closed off to the public, and transformed into a studio and residence for the duration of the Biennale.
As part of the project, a group of activists, environmentalists, and architects designed a radical plan for the reconstruction of Moscow, based on discussions held over the past year, and informed by grassroots initiatives. This laid down a framework for the development of public spaces, alternative modes of transport (such as bicycling), greater awareness of environmental issues, and promoting sustainable use of resources.
In September 2011, the container became part of the 4th Biennale of Contemporary Art's Media impact: International Festival of Activist Art. The project was also part of Delai Sam (DIY), an annual event designed to support citizen-led urban initiatives.
The Residence has been installed at 4 different locations across the city, and currently sits at the Flacon Design Factory.