The Idiot


Pop-Up Show, Tuesday July 23 2015, St. John of Shanghai

“For a long time now I’ve been tormented by a certain idea, but I’ve been afraid to make a novel out of it, because the thought is too difficult, and I’m not ready for it, though it’s a thoroughly tempting thought and I love it. The idea is – to portray a perfectly beautiful man. Nothing, in my opinion, can be more difficult than that, especially in our time.” 

–Dostoevsky, writing to his niece about The Idiot 

The Idiot was published in 1868, one of Dostoevsky’s latter novels written after his Siberian exile. True to disturbing tragedies in life, the literary material that Open Book Art Collective draws upon for this show is richer in questions than conclusions. Dostoevsky masterfully weaves a narrative absorbed with insight into the psychological states of complex and erratic characters, positioning four parts to the novel that is intricately constructed in order to dramatically collapse at the end in murder, disillusionment, manipulation and illness. Who is the real idiot or outsider when the majority of individuals are behaving madly? What is the use of purity, innocence and compassion in what appears to be too harsh of an environment for it to survive?

Installation At The Cheeky Proletariat, Summer 2015

Pop-Up Show at St. John of Shanghai