From Russia, With Facebook: Recycle Group Elevates Social Media Obsession to a Religious Devotion

How a new media arts collective from the east is creating tomorrow’s archaeological relics.


With all of Russia’s recent bad press, its nascent modern art scene frequently gets overlooked. One of the most popular forces spearheading the cultural push is the Recycle Group, a Russian arts collective founded by sculptor Andrey Blokhin and his creative partner Georgy Kuznetsov. Together, their work juxtaposes new media fads and obsessions with traditional religious iconography, the sacred with the silly, a practice which so far has caused the duo much less grief than their fellow country (wo)men in Pussy Riot. One of their most famous projects, Holy WiFi (2013), had the pair carving the ubiquitous Wi-Fi symbol into black marble, and is just one of the many examples in which the group makes distinct comments regarding technology as a new media “higher power.” Their work is also simply just fascinating to look at.

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