Underground (from the English underground – underground, underground) is a series of artistic trends in contemporary art that oppose themselves to mass culture and the mainstream. The underground rejects and violates the political, moral and ethical orientations and types of behavior accepted in society, introducing asocial behavior into everyday life. In the Soviet period, due to the severity of the regime, almost all unofficial, i.e. not recognized by the authorities, art turned out to be underground.
Underground – in the narrow sense – any non-commercial, experimental art; in the broad – the concept and phenomenon that arose in the United States in the late 1950s. and meaning “underground” culture as an integral part of the so-called counterculture, which contrasted itself with the restrictions and conventions that prevailed in the culture society.
The art of underground, imbued with the spirit of dissidentism. It rejects and violates the political, moral and ethical orientations and types of behavior accepted in society, introducing asocial behavior into everyday life. Typical topics of the American and European underground are “sexual revolution”, drugs, problems of marginalized groups.
In the Soviet period, this concept acquired a slightly different meaning and more politicized forms: here, due to the strictness of the regime, almost any unofficial not recognized by the authorities, art, including music and literature, turned out to be underground.
From the mid-1950s to the late 1980s “Artistic opposition” was represented by the activities of many associations, among which the most famous groups were “Lianozovskaya” (E. and L. Kropyvnytsky, L. Masterkova, O. Rabin and others (from 1956 to the mid-1970s)), “Sretensky Boulevard” (I. Kabakov, E. Neizvestny, Yu. Sobolev, Yu. Sooster and others (from 1960 to the mid-1970s)), “Collective Actions” (A. Monastyrsky, G. Kizelvater, I . Makarevich, S. Romashko and others (since 1975)), “Fly agarics” (S. Gundlakh, K. Zvezdochetov, V. Mironenko and others (s1978)). Creativity of artists who did not join any associations (V. Sidur, A. Zverev, M. Shemyakin), but representatives of social art (E. Bulatov, V. Komar and A. Melamid), and other avant-garde movements developed in the mainstream of the underground. (Avant-garde group “,” World Champions “).
After the collapse of the political system of the Soviet Union, and with it the lifting of restrictions and prohibitions on the freedom of artistic creation, the underground as a phenomenon of cultural life came to naught.
Underground masters: Lev Kropyvnytsky, Lyubov Masterkova, Oscar Rabin, Ilya Kabakov, Ernst Neizvestny, Yuri Sobolev, Yulo Sooster, Kirill Zvezdochotov, Mikhail Shemyakin, Anatoly Zverev, Vadim Sidur, Vitaliy Komar, Alexander Melamid.