Jonas Staal: Propaganda Art in the 21st Century (2019)

24 February 2021, dusan

“Propaganda art—whether a depiction of joyous workers in the style of socialist realism or a film directed by Steve Bannon—delivers a message. But, as Jonas Staal argues, propaganda does not merely make a political point; it aims to construct reality itself. Political regimes have shaped our world according to their interests and ideology; today, popular mass movements push back by constructing other worlds with their own propagandas.

Staal shows that propaganda is not a relic of a totalitarian past but occurs today even in liberal democracies. He considers different historical forms of propaganda art, from avant-garde to totalitarian and modernist, and he investigates the us versus them dichotomy promoted in War on Terror propaganda art—describing, among other things, a fictional scenario from the Department of Homeland Security, acted out in real time, and military training via videogame. He discusses artistic and cultural productions developed by such popular mass movements of the twenty-first century as the Occupy, activism by and in support of undocumented migrants and refugees, and struggles for liberation in such countries as Mali and Syria.

Staal proposes a new model of emancipatory propaganda art—one that acknowledges the relation between art and power and takes both an aesthetic and a political position in the practice of world-making.”

Publisher MIT Press, September 2019
ISBN 9780262042802, 0262042800
230 pages

Interview with author: Pierre d’Alancaisez (New Books Network, 2021, podcast).

Reviews: Christoph Chwatal (Third Text, 2020), Hailey Maxwell (The Drouth, 2020), Joerg Bader (Critique d’art, 2019, FR).

Publisher
WorldCat

PDF, PDF (12 MB)

Robin Blaetz (ed.): Women’s Experimental Cinema: Critical Frameworks (2007)

25 November 2020, dusan

Women’s Experimental Cinema provides lively introductions to the work of fifteen avant-garde women filmmakers, some of whom worked as early as the 1950s and many of whom are still working today. In each essay in this collection, a leading film scholar considers a single filmmaker, supplying biographical information, analyzing various influences on her work, examining the development of her corpus, and interpreting a significant number of individual films. The essays rescue the work of critically neglected but influential women filmmakers for teaching, further study, and, hopefully, restoration and preservation. Just as importantly, they enrich the understanding of feminism in cinema and expand the terrain of film history.

The contributors examine the work of Marie Menken, Joyce Wieland, Gunvor Nelson, Yvonne Rainer, Carolee Schneemann, Barbara Rubin, Amy Greenfield, Barbara Hammer, Chick Strand, Marjorie Keller, Leslie Thornton, Abigail Child, Peggy Ahwesh, Su Friedrich, and Cheryl Dunye. The essays highlight the diversity in these filmmakers’ forms and methods, covering topics such as how Menken used film as a way to rethink the transition from abstract expressionism to Pop Art in the 1950s and 1960s, how Rubin both objectified the body and investigated the filmic apparatus that enabled that objectification in her film Christmas on Earth (1963), and how Dunye uses film to explore her own identity as a black lesbian artist. At the same time, the essays reveal commonalities, including a tendency toward documentary rather than fiction and a commitment to nonhierarchical, collaborative production practices. The volume’s final essay focuses explicitly on teaching women’s experimental films, addressing logistical concerns (how to acquire the films and secure proper viewing spaces) and extending the range of the book by suggesting alternative films for classroom use.”

Contributors: Paul Arthur, Robin Blaetz, Noël Carroll, Janet Cutler, Mary Ann Doane, Robert A. Haller, Chris Holmlund, Chuck Kleinhans, Scott MacDonald, Kathleen McHugh, Ara Osterweil, Maria Pramaggiore, Melissa Ragona, Kathryn Ramey, M. M. Serra, Maureen Turim, William C. Wees.

Publisher Duke University Press, Durham, NC, 2007
Open access
ISBN 9780822340232, 0822340232
viii+421 pages

Reviews: Harriet Margolis (NWSA Journal, 2009), Beth Hutchison (Signs, 2009), Gwendolyn Audrey Foster (Quarterly Review of Film and Video, 2011), Jan-Christopher Horak (Screening the Past, 2008), David Sterritt (Cineaste, 2008), Phoebe Hart (M/C Reviews, 2008).

Publisher
OAPEN
WorldCat

PDF, PDF

School as a Laboratory of Modern Life: On the Reform of Art Education in Central Europe, 1900-1945 (2020) [EN, SK, DE]

27 October 2020, dusan

Proceedings from the international symposium School as a Laboratory of Modern Life held on the occasion of the 90th anniversary of the establishment of the School of Arts and Crafts in Bratislava and the 100th anniversary of the establishment of the Bauhaus, organised by the Slovak Design Center at the Goethe-Institut in Bratislava in September 2019.

Contributors: Katalin Bakos, Simona Bérešová, Meghan Forbes, Lada Hubatová-Vacková, Vít Jakubíček, Alena Kavčáková, Alexandra Panzert, Klára Prešnajderová, Sonia de Puineuf, Mária Rišková, Grit Weber, Patrick Werkner, Cornelia Wieg, Julia Witt.

Edited by Simona Bérešová, Klára Prešnajderová, and Sonia de Puineuf
Publisher Slovak Design Center, Bratislava, September 2020
Open access
ISBN 9788089992065
277 pages

Symposium
Publisher

PDF, PDF (20 MB)
PDF (Slovak-only edition, no images, 1 MB)