Hito Steyerl: Duty Free Art: Art in the Age of Planetary Civil War (2017)

21 December 2017, dusan

“What is the function of art in the era of digital globalization?

How can one think of art institutions in an age defined by planetary civil war, growing inequality, and proprietary digital technology? The boundaries of such institutions have grown fuzzy. They extend from a region where the audience is pumped for tweets to a future of “neurocurating,” in which paintings surveil their audience via facial recognition and eye tracking to assess their popularity and to scan for suspicious activity.

In Duty Free Art, filmmaker and writer Hito Steyerl wonders how we can appreciate, or even make art, in the present age.

What can we do when arms manufacturers sponsor museums, and some of the world’s most valuable artworks are used as currency in a global futures market detached from productive work? Can we distinguish between information, fake news, and the digital white noise that bombards our everyday lives? Exploring subjects as diverse as video games, WikiLeaks files, the proliferation of freeports, and political actions, she exposes the paradoxes within globalization, political economies, visual culture, and the status of art production.”

Publisher Verso, London, 2017
Creative Commons BY-NC 4.0 License
ISBN 9781786632432, 1786632438
244 pages

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Adrian Favell: Before and After Superflat: A Short History of Japanese Contemporary Art, 1990-2011 (2012)

21 November 2017, dusan

“Any discussion of Japanese contemporary art inevitably leads to the pop-culture fantasies of Takashi Murakami, Yoshitomo Nara and the other artists of the Superflat movement. But Japan as a whole has changed dramatically after stumbling through a series of economic, social and ecological crises since the collapse of its ‘bubble’ economy in the early 1990s. How did Murakami, Nara and Superflat become the dominant artistic vision of the Japan of today? What lies behind their imagery of a childish and decadent society unable to face up to reality? Written by a sociologist with an eye for sharp observation and clear reportage, Before and After Superflat offers the first comprehensive history in English of the Japanese art world from 1990 up to the tsunami of March 2011, and its struggle to find a voice amidst Japan’s economic decline and China’s economic ascent.”

Publisher Blue Kingfisher, Hong Kong, 2012
ISBN 9789881506412, 9881506417
246 pages
via author

Reviews: Janet Koplos (Art in America, 2012), Ashley Rawlings (Art Space Tokyo, 2012), David Cozy (Japan Times, 2012), Modern Art Asia (2012).

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Cosmic Shift: Russian Contemporary Art Writing (2017)

17 October 2017, dusan

“In this, the first anthology of Russian contemporary art writing to be published outside Russia, many of the country’s most prominent contemporary artists, writers, philosophers, curators and historians come together to examine the region’s various movements of contemporary art, culture, and theory, from communism, cosmism and conceptualism to past and future futures.

With contributions from Barte de Baere, Boris Groys, Ilya and Emilia Kabakov, Anton Vidokle, Bogdan Mamonov, Pavel Pepperstein, Dmitri Prigov and Masha Sumnina amongst many others, this definitive collection reveals a compelling portrait of a vast and complex nation built on a contradicting dialectic between the material and the ideal and a culture battling its own histories and ideologies.”

Edited by Elena Zaytseva and Alex Anikina
Foreword by Bart De Baere
Publisher Zed Books, London, 2017
ISBN 9781786993243, 1786993244
xvii+516 pages

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