Artist’s talk by John Russell

FRIDAY 19 JANUARY 18.00–19.30

A performative artist lecture and conversation with John Russell.
Organized by Elisa R. Linn & Lennart Wolff

BSR Fine Arts Talks

John Russell will present his recent film “DOGGO” (2017) commissioned by Kunsthalle Zurich as part of a performative artist lecture followed by a conversation between the artist, Elisa R. Linn and Lennart Wolff.


‘… the best of all possible worlds’ Doctor Pangloss, ‘Candide,’ 1759, Voltaire


DOGGO is a FEELGOOD road movie about a dog and an insect who like each other. They are asked to search for someone who has gone missing from an ‘Age Centre’. It seems like they have to prevent a disaster but in the end there isn’t a problem.


Set in the future, or maybe in the future, at some unspecified point where extra-terrestrial habitation, radically extended life-spans and human-to-animal body transplants (and grafts) are considered routine aspects of everyday life. All the events take place on Earth in a city similar to London.


The culture is recognisable in most respects, although moving towards a ‘resolved’ post-religious condition (maybe some kind of Communism). All the characters are joyful. The tone throughout is ‘light and happy’ (joyful) to reflect the tone of this transformed society and social relations/consciousness. It is not proposed that this ‘happiness’ is misguided, enforced, naïve or ironic.


It may be that people are now communicating telepathically and use holograms to indicate they are ‘talking.’


This truly is the best of all possible worlds.


The event “DOGGO” is organized by Elisa R. Linn & Lennart Wolff, with the support of the British School at Rome.




John Russell (b.1963, lives and works in London, UK) studied History of Art at Goldsmiths College of Art and Fine Art at Slade School and is a Reader in Fine Art at the University of Reading.

He was a co-founder of the artists’ group BANK, of which he was a member for ten years participating in over fifty exhibitions and events, as well as several publications. Since leaving BANK in January 2000, Russell has worked both independently and collaboratively in producing artworks, exhibitions, texts and publications. His work has been shown recently in solo shows at Bridget Donahue Gallery, New York (2015), concurrently with the publication of the text ‘SQRRL’ Rhizome, 2015, Kunsthalle Zurich, 2017 and High Art, Paris, 2017. See


Elisa R. Linn (lives and works in New York and Berlin) is a curator and writer. She is currently attending the Whitney Independent Study Curatorial Program. Her writings appeared in publications and magazines like, frieze, Spike Art Quarterly, Kaleidoscope and artforum among others. Lennart Wolff (lives and works in Berlin) is an architect and curator. He graduated from the Architectural Association London. Together, they have founded the curatorial project km temporaer. Current and upcoming projects include performances, screenings and exhibitions at galleries, independent spaces and institutions such as Galerie Bernhard (Zurich, 2017), Shoot the Lobster (NYC, 2017), Neuer Aachener Kunstverein (2015), 83 Pitt Street (NYC, 2016), South London Gallery (2018), Bronx Museum (NYC, 2018) as well as the Center for German Architecture (Berlin, 2018). (Press Release)