16 Tons
17 Tons: Memory as practice
17 Tons: Memory as practice
2012 Architects & Refunc
Aesthetics of Pollution
Alexandrov, Grigori
Almarcegui, Lara
Amalrik, Leonid, Dmitri Babichenko & ...
Amorales, Carlos
Anthoine, Roger
Apóstol, Alexander
Art Salon | Artist Talk ...
Artwork Entry
Ashington Group, The
Auden, W. H. [Wystan Hugh]
Becher, Bernd & Hilla
Beehive Design Collective
Ben Cain: About his research
Ben Cain: Audience and Interaction
Ben Cain: Physical aspects of ...
Bevierre, Olivier
Biscotti, Rossella
Bissill, George
Boltanski, Christian
Boom, Irma & Johan Pijnappel
Brandt, Bill
Britten, Benjamin
Broodthaers, Marcel
Buckle, Janet
Burtynsky, Edward
Cain, Ben
Campbell, Duncan
Carboniferous Landscapes
Cinematek Brussels
Claire Fontaine
Claus, Emile
Coal Face, 1935
Cobb, Francis William
Contemporary Art
Cornish, Norman
Crises of Capitalism
Cuauhtémoc Media (Chief Curator Manifesta ...
Cvijanovic, Nemanja
Cycles of Realism
Dark Matter
Dawn Ades: Coal as a ...
Daykin, Gilbert
de Loutherbourg, Philippe Jacques
Deller, Jeremy
Demuth, Charles
Douard, Cécile
Duchamp, Marcel
Durán, Manuel
Edgar Hermans about the Heritage ...
Embroidered Sayings
Epics of Redundancy
Ernst, Max
European Civilisation
Furlan, Tomaž
Garden Cities
Geers, Kendell
Geerts, Paul
Goldin+ Senneby
Granata, Rocco
Gronbach, Eva
Grubic, Igor
Guillaumin, Armand
Habex, Jan
Hair, Thomas Harrison
Hammons, David
Hanging the Manifesta 9 Flag
Harrison, Tony
Harskamp, Nicoline van
Hedwig Fijen: The idea behind ...
Herman, Josef
Heslop, Robert
Hüner, Emre
Industrial Revolution
Interview: Ante Timmermans
Ivens, Joris & Henri Storck
Izquierdo, Jota
Jafri, Maryam
Jitrik, Magdalena
Kaliski, Kevin
Karikis, Mikhail & Uriel Orlow
Kessels, Willy
Kilbourn, Oliver
Klutsis, Gustav
Konijnenberg, Willem Adriaan van
Konrad, Aglaia
Kozakis, Nicolas & Raoul Vaneigem
Kuai Shen
Landscape: From the Picturesque to ...
Landscape: From the Picturesque to ...
Leck, Bart van der
Lieshout, Erik van
Linde Hermans: Scenography of Manifesta ...
Livrets des ouvriers mineurs du ...
Long, Richard
Luce, Maximilien
Luque, Manuel
Maciá, Oswaldo
Manifesta 9
Manifesta Journal 13: Conversation between ...
Martin, John
Masereel, Frans
Mass-Observation movement
Matthys, Michaël
McCullin, Don
McGuinness, Tom
Meunier, Constantin
Michaël Matthys about La Ville ...
Mieke Mels (Curatorial Assistant) about ...
Mies van der Rohe, Ludwig
Mining Machine
Monko, Marge
Moore, Henry
Munby, Arthur
Museum of the Miner’s House, ...
Newcomen Colliery Winding Engine
News from the Graveyard: On ...
Ni, Haifeng
Nostalgia and Its Discontents
Origins of Manifesta
Pabst, Georg Wilhelm
Paulus de Châtelet, Pierre
Perlee Parker, Henry
Poetics of Restructuring
Portrait of Spyros Roumeliotis and ...
Prayer Mats
Preparation of the Building
Promo Video
Raqs Media Collective
Rittase, William
Robinson, William Heath
Rocco Granata about 'Marina'
Saint Barbara
Schlingelhoff, Bea
Selander, Lina
Sime, Sidney
Smithson, Robert
Smoke, Colours and Loans
Soi, Praneet
Soviet propaganda
Stella, Joseph
Sutherland, Graham Vivien
The Age of Coal: An ...
The Legacy of Manifesta
The Mine Depot, Waterschei
Timmermans, Ante
Tomaszewski, Yan
Torfs, Ana
Underground as Hell
Underground, Models of the
Vanden Eynde, Maarten
Vandersteen, Willy
Vega Macotela, José Antonio
Venet, Bernar
Vercheval, Georges
Vermeir, Katleen & Ronny Heiremans
VIDEO: Kuai Shen
Video: manifesta 9 symposium on ...
VIDEO: Marge Monko - Nora's ...
VIDEO: Raqs Media Collective - ...
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VIDEO:Oswaldo Maciá - Martinete
Visible Solutions, LLC
Waterschei Planning Archive
Woods, Paolo
Zola, Émile
Zwartberg drama

EN / nl


The story of Alexey Stakhanov (1906-1977) is a marker of the centrality of the coalminer as a symbol of production in the 20th century. On August 31, 1935, Stakhanov, a pneumatic pick operator in the Tsentralnaya-Irmino mine in Kadievka, set a new “All-Union record” by digging 102 tons of coal in 5 hours and 45 minutes, at a time when the norm was around 6.5 tons per shift (Siegelbaum 1990: 66ff.). The scoop was due to a great extent to the initiative of Konstantin Petrov, the party organizer (partorg) at Central Irmino. However spontaneous, it came in handy for the Stalinist hierarchy, which, needing to increase the production quotas of the Five Year Plan, launched a “Stakhanovite movement” aimed first at increasing the output of mines in the Donbass region (ibid). Following in the steps of Stakhanov, all kinds of “heroes of the labour front” kept setting productivity records in any number of industries, projecting an image of material and political achievement built around the slogan “Life is joyous, comrades” (ibid 226). The craze reached the point where even demographic policy proposals in 1936 spoke candidly of rewarding mothers with many children as “Stakhanovites of child-bearing” (Siegelbaum and Sokolov 2000: 203, 100). The outcome of the campaign was mixed, at times lowering the quality of products and affecting wages and other workers. Critics of Stalinism, like Leon Trotsky, denounced the movement as secretly reintroducing the “piecework payment” principle and abolishing nonworking time, while further pampering bureaucrats (Trotsky 1972: 80). In the long run, ‘Stakhanovite’ has become an epithet to deride people who are overachievers in their jobs. The cultural effects of Soviet labour heroes were as contradictory as the movement itself. Stakhanovism was hailed by socialist realist artists and the emergent Soviet entertainment industry. Propaganda cartoons like Victorious Destination (1939), directed by L. Amalrik, D. Babichenko and V. Polkovnikov, instilled in Soviet children a belief in the economic superiority of the Soviet Union over the capitalist West, which became, in the post-war period, the most significant political fiction of the Soviet system. Similarly, Grigori Alexandrov, formerly a cameraman for Sergei Eisenstein and one of Joseph Stalin’s favourite directors, adapted the epics of overproduction to the American style musical. One does not need to subscribe the thesis that Stalin was “the immediate heir to constructivist poetics” (Groys 1992: 36) to be awed by the fact that Soviet avant-garde artists such as Gustav Klutsis and El Lissitzky devoted some of their best works of graphic design to Stakhanovist propaganda and the policies of the Five Year Plan, in part because their productionist ideology was compatible with the regime’s rhetoric of labour. In any event, Klutsis’s services to Stalinist propaganda did not spare him from being imprisoned and shot in a prison camp in 1938 (Wood 1992: 20). Neither did it forestall the demise of the Soviet avant-garde. CM