The New Yorker, October 20, 2003

The problem for post-Soviet art is that Russia changes so damn quickly: a lithograph of Lenin and Stalin sagely perusing some manifesto in front of a Marlboro logo feels almost as dated as the period it satirizes. The exile's homeland, on the other hand, never changes: nostalgia, the conceptual anchor of this postmodern survey, traps the homeland in amber. Taking a cue from Soviet iconolatry, the exhibit specializes in unadulterated symbolism an exit visa as large as a door; the body of Lenin crowned by the head of Mickey Mouse-but it is the works of the ChagaU acolyte Natalya Nesterova that best express the show's theme. The people in her "Dancing People" and "People on the Shore" are made of rivers, hills, and houses-a reminder that the landscape of nostalgia is internal, made of longing for a land that is lost or never existed.

Through Feb. 1. (Yeshiva Universiry Museum, at the Center for Jewish Hisrory, 15 W. 16th St. 212-294-8330.)