Casting tour for new season of Million-Rouble Idea starts in Sochi: VEB and NTV to select best start-ups

15 may 2018 года
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Today, Vnesheconombank’s jury and NTV producer team appraise several dozens of technology companies from the Krasnodar Territory and adjacent regions. Selection shooting of the casting tour takes place in the Sirius Educational Centre. The most interesting projects will be demonstrated in The Million-Rouble Idea TV show, which will go on the air in autumn.


“Up-and-coming technology companies based elsewhere than in Moscow and St.-Petersburg are not uncommon today. They appear in various cities and towns, often as part of advanced technology parks and higher educational establishments historically renowned for their engineering training. Not only do they follow the trends but they also actively shape and promote digital economy. In some regions, start-ups have already secured their own market position. Innovative ecosystem decentralization and a stronger focus on technology entrepreneurship can provide the regional economy with a powerful impetus. Vnesheconombank sees its mission in supporting this trend,” said Alexey Ivanchenko, Vnesheconombank Deputy Chairman - Member of the Management Board. “Today, we are exploring several dozens of worthwhile ideas. These are strong projects that have already passed the pre-selection stage.”

Many of the start-ups that have brought their ideas to Sochi engage in agricultural and environmental business. Their projects, in particular, include an on-line mineral fertilizer doze calculation system, an infra-red agricultural drier, rice production residue utilization technology, power generating grass lawns, powder metallurgy waste recycling, and others.

Erica Bergen, the youngest participant in the casting, is only fifteen but she has been already developing her Electronic Portfolio business project. In future, this solution may benefit from the blockchain technology to ensure data security and verification.

The selection shooting will take place in 11 Russian towns in May and June. Novosibirsk is to host the next casting on May 18. Then, the Million-Rouble Idea will go to Voronezh, St.-Petersburg, Samara, Moscow, Kazan, Yekaterinburg, Kaliningrad, Velikiy Novgorod, and Vladivistok.


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The Innovation as Artistic Technique exhibition to open in the Hermitage as part of SPIEF

14 may 2018 года
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A new Innovation as Artistic Technique exhibition is opening in the Hermitage, aimed at those who want to get a better understanding of innovation technologies and their interactions with contemporary art.

The exhibition is part of the 20/21 Hermitage project within the cultural programme of the Saint Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF). The exhibition will run from 25 May to 3 June in the Manege Upper Gallery of the Small Hermitage.

Visitors will be able to see projects of artists working with technological art, SciArt, artificial intelligence, generative art and other contemporary practices.

For example, Kevin Abosch creates his artworks using his own blood and blockchain-based crypto-tokens. Dmitry Kavarga has constructed an artwork capable of turning conceptual texts to colour palettes. Misha Most will show a painting created by a drone on the basis of his drawing. Stain will present the audiovisual performance art projects devoted to the understanding of the discreteness concept. The installation of Art Group “Kuda Begut Sobaki” (Where Dogs Run) will make visitors feel anxiety and fear of the future.

Konstantin Novoselov is Nobel laureate who earned the Nobel Prize for discovery of graphene, a new form of carbon. He will participate as an artist and will show the scientific research process.

The exhibition will be the first time, collaborations of artists and science labs will be available for public viewing. The Russian Quantum Centre and Dmitry Gutov will present their joint project that will make visitors feel like ultracold atoms in a quantum simulator. And Pavel Pepperstein will show his work created in collaboration with the ChemRar High-Tech Centre.

In the past, the invention of oil paints opened a new page in the history of arts. Will the impact of innovative contemporary devices be as revolutionary?

“We are going to see successes and failures, high-speed manoeuvres and sharp turns. But the key message of the exhibition is that blockchain can be an artwork only if tokens are created with blood of an artist and graphene-based ink is an artistic instrument only in the hands of a master,” said Mikhail Piotrovsky, General Director of the State Hermitage in his commentary about interaction of innovation technology and art.

Sergey Gorkov, Vnesheconombank’s Chairman, believes that technology development has a life-changing impact. “Innovation has been changing economic models and the very principles of social interaction. Artists play a role of technological visionaries. They are ahead of their time, helping us to look behind the horizon and see a glimpse of the future. The future that will change us, our country and the whole world. Now, we are taking a new look at the role of traditional institutions. Take the State Hermitage Museum, a classical arts museum, brave enough to launch the 20/21 Hermitage project and open its doors for ultra contemporary art projects. Or Vnesheconombank, a development institution promoting the high potential technology agenda. This project is at the intersection of art and innovation, it makes us change the way we perceive the world.”

Victoria Kondrashova, RDI. Creative’s CEO: “Artists are always particularly sensitive to social and global changes. Their art is a reaction to such changes. They can “tame” innovations and “domesticate” technologies. To address the issues and challenges of our time, artists use innovative technological solutions as an instrument, technique, a source of moral introspection, creating the ground for communication with viewers. The exhibition will showcase the works of artists who use innovative language to investigate the relationship between artistic thinking, new materials and technological processes.”

Dmitry Ozerkov, Head of Contemporary Art at the State Hermitage and Director of the 20/21 Hermitage Project: “The title of the exhibition is based on Victor Shklovsky’s article “Art as Technique” published 100 years ago. The article defines the terms “technique”, “automatic perception” and “defamiliarization”, the key concepts of Russian formalism. In what way has the situation changed for the past 100 years and what are the concepts we need to take on board today? This is the question the exhibition is to pose.”

Coordinators: Dmitry Ozerkov and Victoria Kondrashova
Organizers: State Hermitage, RDI. Creative
Creative Partner: Vnesheconombank
with support of VEB Innovations Fund


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