Jonas Staal: Propaganda Art from the 20th to the 21st Century (2018)

26 July 2018, dusan

“This study by artist Jonas Staal explores the development of propaganda art from the 20th to the 21st century. Staal defines propaganda as the performance of power by means of the equation propaganda = power + performance. Through his work as a propaganda researcher and practice as a propaganda artist, he argues that different structures of power generate different forms of propaganda and therefore different forms of propaganda art. Whereas in the context of the 20th century Staal discusses the differences between avant-garde, totalitarian, and modernist propaganda art, in the 21st century he proposes the categories of War on Terror Propaganda Art, Popular Propaganda Art, and Stateless Propaganda Art. By means of concrete examples of artists and artworks within each of these categories, he attempts to show how the performance of power in the 21st century translates into different visual forms, and how they shape and direct our reality. Staal’s study shows that power and art exist in continuous interaction. Propaganda and propaganda art are not terms that only refer to the past, but concepts and practices through which we can understand the construction of reality in the present.”

PhD Dissertation, Faculty of Humanities, University of Leiden
Open access
425 pages

Publisher

PDF, PDF (2 MB)
Video (12 min)

Media-N, 12(3): Uncovering News: Reporting and Forms of New Media Art (2017)

18 February 2018, dusan

“As the highly contested term “fake news” has become omnipresent in our media sphere and as the hacking of private networks for political gain have dominated the global news cycle, Media-N’s new issue is well positioned to uncover the complex relationship between media art and the multifarious forms of news reportage. We find in this wide-ranging journal issue, new media artists, writers, and theoreticians attempting to reveal, expose, and protest the production, rhetoric, and dissemination of news. Exploiting or subverting the existing network or creating alternative technologies, codes, or platforms, new media artists has probed the hegemonic grip of tradition forms of media production. Employing the raw material of journalism or intervening in the distribution and transmission of news information, artists have effectively critiqued or reimagined the unstable and fluid spaces of the contemporary news sphere. The nature of news information and its relationship to concepts of reality, truth, aesthetics, and the public and private are all at play in this issue.” (from Introduction)

With contributions by Erica Levin, Randall Packer, Kris Paulsen, Erin McElroy, Lisa Moren, Brandon Bauer, Rick Valentin, Francesca Franco, Yasuhito Abe, Vincent Cellucci, Jesse Allison, Derick Ostrenko, and Mina Cheon.

Guest editors: Abigail Susik and Grant Taylor
Publisher New Media Caucus, 2017
Open Access
ISSN 1942-017X

HTML

Margit Rowell, Deborah Wye: The Russian Avant-Garde Book, 1910-1934 (2002–) [English, Spanish]

17 September 2016, dusan

“Russian avant-garde books made between 1900s-30s reflect a vivid and tumultuous period in that nation’s history that had ramifications for art, society, and politics. The early books, with their variously sized pages of coarse paper, illustrations entwined with printed, hand-written, and stamped texts, and provocative covers, were intended to shock academic conventions and bourgeois sensibilities. After the 1917 Revolution, books appeared with optimistic designs and photomontage meant to reach the masses and symbolize a rational, machine-led future. Later books showcased modern Soviet architecture and industry in the service of the government’s agenda.

Major artists adopted the book format during these two decades. They include Natalia Goncharova, El Lissitzky, Kazimir Malevich, Aleksandr Rodchenko, Olga Rozanova, the Stenberg brothers, Varvara Stepanova, and others. These artists often collaborated with poets, who created their own transrational language to accompany the imaginative illustrations. Three major artistic movements, Futurism, Suprematism, and Constructivism, that developed during this period in painting and sculpture also found their echo in the book format.

This publication accompanied an exhibition of Russian avant-garde books at The Museum of Modern Art, New York. Featuring some 300 books, this was the most comprehensive exhibition ever devoted exclusively to the illustrated books made during this period. It was prompted by a gift to MoMA of more than 1,000 Russian avant-garde illustrated books from The Judith Rothschild Foundation, New York.”

With essays by Deborah Wye, Nina Gurianova, Jared Ash, Gerald Janecek, and Margit Rowell.

Publisher Museum of Modern Art, New York, 2002
ISBN 0870700073, 9780870700071
304 pages
via MoMA

Reviews: Holland Cotter (NY Times, 2002), Steven Heller (Eye, 2002).
Exh. review: Kristin M. Jones (Frieze, 2002).

Exhibition website
Publisher (incl. installation views)
WorldCat

English: PDF, PDF (2002, 72 MB)
Spanish: PDF, PDF (2003, 74 MB)