Essentially a volunteer organization, the Center was founded in 2008 by a group of Voronezh artists, many of whom subsequently made a name for themselves in Russia and abroad. According to these “founding fathers” (Ivan Gorshkov, Arseny Zhilyaev, Nikolai Alekseev, Mikhail Lylov, and Ilya Dolgov), the event that marked the beginning of the Center’s activities was the 2009 exhibition We’ll Take Action from Now, which presented works by “leading artists of the Black Earth region” and their Moscow colleagues. Until it got its own building, the Center organized exhibitions, master classes, and lectures at various venues across the city. By 2012, the city administration had begun to take an interest in the center’s activities. After perusing the list of disused buildings, the city proposed that the Center take over the Lenin House of Culture at the local aircraft factory. However, this enormous Stalin-era building, “with pot plants, numerous busts of Lenin, and massive columns,” as Alekseev described it, was far too big for its needs. As a result, the city proposed a smaller, central space on Revolution Avenue, which it leased to the Center free of charge. The first exhibition in this space, Revisiting the Space of Voronezh, opened on May 17, 2013, with works by German, Swiss, and Russian artists.