Maja Fowkes: The Green Bloc: Neo-Avant-Garde Art and Ecology Under Socialism (2015)

4 December 2017, dusan

“Expanding the horizon of established accounts of Central European art under socialism, The Green Bloc uncovers the neglected history of artistic engagement with the natural environment in the Eastern Bloc. Focussing on artists and artist groups whose ecological dimension has rarely been considered, including the Pécs Workshop from Hungary, OHO in Slovenia, TOK in Croatia, Rudolf Sikora in Slovakia, and the Czech artist Petr Štembera, Maja Fowkes’s innovative research brings to light an array of distinctive approaches to nature, from attempts to raise environmental awareness among socialist citizens to the exploration of non-anthropocentric positions and the quest for cosmological existence in the midst of red ideology. Embedding artistic production in social, political, and environmental histories of the region, this book reveals the artists’ sophisticated relationship to nature, at the precise moment when ecological crisis was first apprehended on a planetary scale. ”

Publisher Central European University Press, New York and Budapest, 2015
ISBN 9789633860687, 9633860687
viii+299 pages
via Memory of the World

Reviews: Katalin Cseh-Varga (Springerin, 2015, DE), Juliane Debeusscher (Critique d’art, 2018).

Author
Publisher
WorldCat

PDF (32 MB)

Revista Arta (14-15): Performance in Eastern Europe (2015) [Romanian/English]

3 January 2017, dusan

Special dossier of the magazine.

“Under such names as happening, processual or performative art, situationist or contextual art, actionism or corporal / body art, performance art has remained since the 1960s maybe the most direct, incisive, and cutting-edge form of artistic expression of the last decades. Positioned at the cross-point between the visual, the discursive, and the theatrical, involving the artist with his/her entire physical, psychological, and spiritual being, in front of the public or together with it, performance art has not yet run out of resources in the context of the last years, when other forms of visual intervention have become more fashionable. Since the 1960s, performance art has represented a form of protest of the artists against the aesthetic establishment, accelerated muzeification, and the consumerism of the art market. The dossier coordinated by Ileana Pintilie demonstrates all these assertions, but also underlines the emancipating dimension performance art has had in the former communist countries of Eastern Europe – the fascination and fear which totalitarian regimes developed in front of this provocative form of social and artistic non-conformism.”

Edited by Ileana Pintilie
Publisher Romanian Artists’ Union (Uniunea Artiștilor Plastici din România), Bucharest, 2015
98 pages

Publisher

PDF (3 MB)

Les Promesses du passé: une histoire discontinue de l’art dans l’ex-Europe de l’Est (2010) [French]

23 August 2016, dusan

“Twenty years after the fall of the Berlin Wall, Les Promesses du passé [Promises of the Past] questions the former opposition between Eastern and Western Europe by reinterpreting the history of the communist block countries. To draw this discontinuous history of art in Former East, this transnational and transgenerational project features works by more than fifty artists from Central and Eastern Europe but also from other European Countries (to name a few: Marina Abramovic, Yael Bartana, Tacita Dean, Liam Gillick, Sanja Ivekovic, Július Koller, Jiri Kovanda, David Maljkovic, Marjetica Potrc and Monika Sosnowska).

Gathering together newly commissioned essays, art documentation, artists’ pages, unpublished documents and an anthology of historical texts by authors such as Slavoj Zizek, the late Igor Zabel and Svetlana Boym, this volume is an invaluable survey of the Eastern European art scene of the last decades—a scene which is gradually shifting from the periphery to the centre of current art-historical debates. ”

Published as catalogue of the exhibition Promises of the Past. A Discontinuous History of Art in Former Eastern Europe held at Centre Pompidou, Paris, 14 April – 19 July 2010, curated by Joanna Mytkowska and Christine Macel.

Edited by Christine Macel and Nataša Petrešin-Bachelez
Publisher Centre Pompidou, Paris, 2010
ISBN 9782844264411, 2844264417
255 pages
via Gioni

Exh. reviews: Mateusz Kapustka (Kunsttexte 2011, DE), Ana Bogdanovic (ArtHist 2013, EN).
Curator’s commentary: Nataša Petrešin-Bachelez (aprior 2011, EN).

Exhibition
Publisher
WorldCat

PDF (39 MB)