Dubravka Djurić, Miško Šuvaković (eds.): Impossible Histories: Historical Avant-gardes, Neo-avant-gardes, and Post-avant-gardes in Yugoslavia, 1918-1991 (2003)

25 August 2019, dusan

Impossible Histories is the first critical survey of the extraordinary experiments in the arts that took place in the former Yugoslavia from the country’s founding in 1918 to its breakup in 1991. The combination of Austro-Hungarian, French, German, Italian, and Turkish influences gave Yugoslavia’s avant-gardes a distinct character unlike those of other Eastern and Central European avant-gardes. The book explores movements such as Belgrade surrealism, signalism, Yugo-Dada, and zenitism; the groups Alfa, Exat 51, Gorgona, OHO, and Scipion Nasice Sisters Theater; or the magazines Danas, Rdeči pilot, Tank, Vecnost, and Zvrk.

The pieces in this collection offer comparative and interpretive accounts of the avant-gardes in the former Yugoslavian countries of Croatia, Serbia, and Slovenia. The book is divided into four sections: Art and Politics; Literature; Visual Art and Architecture; and Art in Motion (covering theater, dance, music, film, and video). All of the contributors live in the region and many of them participated in the movements discussed. The book also reprints a selection of the most important manifestos generated by all phases of Yugoslav avant-garde activity.”

Publisher MIT Press, 2003
ISBN 0262042169, 9780262042161
xviii+605 pages
via agitprop

Reviews: Suzana Milevska (Springerin, 2004), Matthew S. Witkovsky (caa.reviews, 2004), Yevgeniy Fiks (Art Journal, 2004), Tyrus Miller (Modernism/modernity, 2005), Igor Marjanović (Design Issues, 2007).


PDF (22 MB)

NSK from Kapital to Capital: Neue Slowenische Kunst: An Event of the Final Decade of Yugoslavia (2015) [English, Slovenian]

15 December 2016, dusan

“The exhibition NSK from Kapital to Capital was the first major museum project of the Neue Slowenische Kunst (NSK) collective, and followed the events of its individual constitutive groups, from 1980 and the Laibach poster scandal in Trbovlje (Slovenia) through 1992, when the art collective transformed into the NSK State in Time. The title, NSK from Kapital to Capital, places the exhibition in the socio-political context of the turbulent 1980s, when the old world order was crumbling and the all-encompassing system of global capitalism was starting to come into its own.”

Publisher Moderna Galerija, Ljubljana, 2015
ISBN 9789612061142
83 pages
via L’Internationale


From Kapital to Capital (English, 2015, 2 MB, PDF)
Od Kapitala do kapitala (Slovenian, 2015, PDF, added on 2017-11-7)

Marina Gržinić: Fiction Reconstructed: Eastern Europe, Post-Socialism and the Retro-Avantgarde (1997/2000)

2 December 2015, dusan

“In this book, my point of departure is a difference between Eastern and Western Europe that I try to conceptualize philosophically, insisting on a difference – a critical difference within and not a special classification method marking the process of grounding differences, such as apartheid, as Trinh T. Minh-ha has suggested. The question of who is allowed to write about the history of art, culture and politics in the area once known as Eastern Europe must be posed alongside questions of how and when those events are marked.

The largest part of the book focuses on selected artistic projects and concepts by Mladen Stilinovic (Zagreb), Kasimir Malevich (Belgrade, 1986), and the group Irwin (NSK) (Ljubljana), which were developed in the territory of the former Yugoslavia, and continue to function, develop, and mutate. These projects are read via dialectic positioning (i.e., thesis, anti-thesis, and synthesis) within not only countries of the former Yugoslavia, but also Eastern Europe in general. Finally, they are linked with the notion of ‘Retro-Avant-garde,’ or, as I label it, the new ‘ism’ of the East.” (from the Introduction)

First published in Slovenian as Rekonstruirana fikcija, Ljubljana, 1997.

Edited by Springerin
Publisher edition selene, Vienna, 2000
ISBN 3852661536, 9783852661537
230 pages
via Neda Genova

Review: Franco Torriani (c2005).


PDF (15 MB, no OCR)
PDF (8 MB, OCR’d, from MoW, added 2015-12-4)