News

  • ANN: MA degree programs in Russian Cultural History and the Arts

    CALL FOR APPLICATIONS: MA degree programs in Russian Cultural History and the Arts

    The European University at Saint-Petersburg (EUSP) is calling out to open minds interested in all aspects of Russian Culture and Russian Arts. Join our one-year or two-year international Master’s degree programs in Russian Cultural History and the Arts. EUSP means:
    o Private graduate school in Russia
    o Top research university for the Humanities and Social Sciences
    o MA degree in 1 or 2 years
    o Language of instruction - English
    o 3:1 student/faculty ratio
    o Individual guidance and personal attention
    o 24/7 staff assistance in English
    o Life and study experience in St. Petersburg

    Please select your program:
    MARCA: one-year intensive program ($12 200)
    International MA in Russian Cultural History and the Arts (MARCA) – intensive one-year Master’s degree program with a focus on Russian cultural history and a comprehensive view on Russian literature, theatre, fine arts, ideology and religion.

    MARCA Plus: two-year program ($17 200)
    International MA in Russian Cultural History and the Arts (MARCA Plus) in terms of courses is similar to one-year MARCA program but gives students more time for

    • internship in State Hermitage museum or any cultural institution of your choice;
    • 2 years of Russian language learning;
    • in-depth research and thesis writing.

    An intensive Russian language course is available as part of each program’s curriculum and can be taken for credit.

    Our students
    This academic year, students from Azerbaijan, Denmark, France, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Republic of Korea, Malaysia, Mexico, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Turkey, the UK and the USA enjoy the international atmosphere of our campus in the heart of St. Petersburg - the cultural capital of Russia.

    Selected MARCA courses:
    o From Icon to Avant-Garde: A Survey of Russian Art through the Centuries
    o Intellectual History of Russian Modernism
    o St. Petersburg in Russian Literature
    o Empire, State, Building: Architecture as a Mirror of Russian Politics
    o Defining Russia Musically
    o The Golden Age of Russian Theatre: History, Experiments, Perspectives
    o Russia between East and West: Geo-Political Models and their Cultural Contexts
    o Russian Religious Culture
    o Theatre Lab & Museum Lab

    Dates:
    MARCA Plus program starts once a year at the beginning of September.
    MARCA program starts twice a year. The fall semester starts at the beginning of September. The spring semester starts at the beginning of February. You may choose whichever start date serves you better.

    Application deadlines:
    Admissions continue on a rolling basis. Due to a somewhat lengthy Russian study visa-issuing process we ask that prospective students send the completed application form no later than
    April 30, 2016 - for the fall 2016 semester
    October 30, 2016 - for the spring 2017 semester

    How to apply:
    Your application package should include:
    o A completed Application form
    o Scanned copy of your Passport
    o Scanned copy of your Bachelor’s degree diploma (or documentation that proves you will receive your diploma this year)
    o Scanned copy of your Academic Transcript
    o Your statement of purpose (no more than 500 words)
    o Two letters of recommendation
    o Your CV/Resume

    You may apply online or send the documents listed above, including a scanned transcript of studies, by e-mail to international@eu.spb.ru. Please ask your references to e-mail their recommendation letters directly to the same address.

    EUSP is the first private graduate school in Russia. The mission of the University is to facilitate the professional development of highly-qualified specialists, and to enable those specialists to fulfill their creative and scholarly potential on the basis of international experience and cooperation. EUSP is committed to the integration of Russian scholarship with scholarship in Europe, America, and Asia.

    Study Russia in Russia!

  • PhD Funding: Comparative Studies of Performance Art in Central, Eastern and Southern Europe since 1960

    PhD Funding: Comparative Studies of Performance Art in Central, Eastern and Southern Europe since 1960
    University of Aberdeen, Department of Film and Visual Culture
    Supervisor: Dr. Amy Bryzgel

    This proposal invites PhD research topics that focus on comparative studies of performance art practices—including body art, action art, happenings and events—in the former communist and socialist countries of Central, Eastern and South-Eastern Europe. Studies of performance art in the region have primarily taken the form of single-country studies. This proposal invites scholars to examine the development and manifestations of performance art across borders—locally regionally or globally. Example of projects can include: the development of performance art in the Baltic countries (Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania); the Baltic and other Soviet countries; a juxtaposition of performance art practices in Central Europe (Poland, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria); or a more broad comparison between particular practices in the Soviet Union, Central Europe, and Yugoslavia. Of particular interest would be a project that focuses on the “blind spots” of East European art history, for example, Moldova, Bulgaria, Albania. In exploring the nuances of performance art practices in these different socio-political contexts, this project aims to broaden our understanding of the range of experimental art practices that were developed across the communist East. This is just one example of the sort of project that might be available in this research group. The precise project will be decided upon in consultation with the supervisor.

    Selection will be made on the basis of academic merit. Individuals with a strong research background in the field of Eastern European contemporary art and/or performance art, from either an art history or visual culture background, are encouraged to apply. Applicants should have the necessary language skills needed to undertake the proposed research, and should consider funding sources for travel to conduct field research abroad if it is necessary to the proposed project.

    The School of Language, Literature, Music and Visual Culture has a lively postgraduate community. Postgraduate students are offered a comprehensive programme of research skills training.

    This project is funded by a University of Aberdeen Elphinstone Scholarship. An Elphinstone Scholarship covers the cost of tuition fees, whether Home, EU or Overseas.

    Click for more information

  • PhD Funding: Artistic Re-enactments of Performance Art as Vehicles of Cultural Transfer in Eastern Europe since 1960

    PhD Funding: Artistic Re-enactments of Performance Art as Vehicles of Cultural Transfer in Eastern Europe since 1960
    Project Supervisor: Dr. Amy Bryzgel, Lecturer in Film and Visual Culture at the University of Aberdeen

    This proposal invites PhD research topics that focus on artistic re-enactments of performances from across the former communist and socialist countries of Central, Eastern and South-Eastern Europe in recent artistic practice. There are numerous examples of artistic re-enactments across the region, providing scope for a range of dissertation topics. Projects can include comparative studies, for example, of the relevance of re-enactments in one local tradition versus that of another; or single-country studies of a number of re-enactments being staged in one context. Dissertations will address the following research questions: what are the various functions of artistic re-enactments of performances in Eastern Europe? How do these functions compare with current understandings of re-enactment in the West? How can re-enactments be used to access a lost or inaccessible history (such as performance art in Eastern Europe)? Also welcome are proposals that consider revisiting culturally relevant or historically significant places by artists or within the context of artistic re-enactments.

    Selection will be made on the basis of academic merit. Individuals with a strong research background in the field of Eastern European contemporary art and/or performance art, from either an art history or visual culture background, are encouraged to apply. Applicants should have the necessary language skills needed to undertake the proposed research, and should consider funding sources for travel to conduct field research abroad if it is necessary to the proposed project.

    This project is funded by a University of Aberdeen Elphinstone Scholarship. An Elphinstone Scholarship covers the cost of tuition fees, whether Home, EU or Overseas.

    The School of Language, Literature, Music and Visual Culture has a lively postgraduate community. Postgraduate students are offered a comprehensive programme of research skills training.

    More information on Find a PhD

  • Exhibition: Making Continuity Contemporary: Eastern Europe in New York

    Derfner Judaica Museum + The Art Collection at Hebrew Home at Riverdale is pleased to announce its latest exhibition:
    Making Continuity Contemporary: Eastern Europe in New York
    Elma and Milton A. Gilbert Pavilion Gallery
    March 13–July 17, 2016**

    In different ways, each artist explores the disruptions and continuities in their cultural backgrounds, whether through pictorial abstraction, participatory projects, auditory or written language, or conceptual reinterpretation of cultural symbols. Their mediums also range widely and include hand-drawn animation and audio, chemigrams, painting, mixed media, photography, sculpture, and installation.

    Maryna Bilak, a Ukrainian artist originally from the Carpathian mountains, came to the U.S. to study art at the New York Studio School in 2012. Using her knowledge of traditional Ukrainian textile motifs, she incorporates these patterns into 3-dimensional paintings in which she manipulates color and shape by folding canvas and in multimedia installations in which she assembles hand-painted stones.

    Alina and Jeff Bliumis’s series “Casual Conversations in Brooklyn” (2007) engages questions of how cultural experiences and identities intersect. The photographers spent a day in Brighton Beach—home to a large Jewish and Russian-speaking community—and offered passersby the opportunity to choose from three different signs featuring the words “Russian,” “Jewish,” and “American,” or to create their own. On view are a selection of subjects photographed holding the signs they chose—sometimes more than two—to represent their cultural identity. Alina and Jeff Bliumis were born in Belarus and Moldova, respectively.

    Yevgenia Nayberg, who grew up in Kiev, Ukraine, is represented by the painting “Bird Dictionary” (2011), a rumination on the process of learning a new language. Phrases in Cyrillic text are incorporated into the work, labeled as ordinary things: “regular person,” “regular landscape,” and “standard moon.” However, the reality is the opposite, and the work touches on the idea that learning a new language is strange and surreal for non-speakers. The artist also pays homage to Suprematism in another work on view, a triptych entitled “Happy Man Series” (2013).

    Bulgarian-born artist Eva Nikolova references Balkan architecture in her hand-drawn animation and chemigrams—paintings on light sensitive paper—that construct narratives about memory and personal dislocation. In the animation “Zemya Zemya” (2008), the iconic architectural form of the Orthodox Christian church is seen through a series of free-associative events, leaving interpretation of the narrative up to the viewer. According to the artist, the title is a doubling of the Bulgarian word for earth, land, or ground and refers to the signage on rockets designating the missile type—ground-to-ground or surface-to-surface. The architectural images in Nikolova’s works function as cultural emblems—whether intact or seemingly dilapidated—and explore shifting identities.

    Acclaimed illustrator Peter Sís’s work using the motif of wings references themes of freedom and liberation. In two illustrations from his adaptation of “The Conference of the Birds” (2011)—a 12th century Persian epic poem published by The Penguin Press—a surrealistic flock of birds in the shape of an eye that spreads across a richly colored surface, one blue, one yellow, demonstrates the process of journeying. Sís emigrated to the United States from Czechoslovakia in 1982.

    Diana Shpungin’s “You Will Remember This” (2011) is a hand-drawn animation derived from video footage of her father recorded several months before his death. In it he recounts anecdotes about life in Soviet Latvia, including the tale of acquiring his first car and the black market culture of the USSR in the late 1950s.

    Leonard Ursachi’s drawings of bunkers and a maquette for “Fat Boy”—a large sculpture on view in Prospect Park in Brooklyn—engage what the artist describes as “the bunker mentality.” Ursachi’s native Romania is dotted with bunkers abandoned after the Soviet period—symbols that instill a sense of fear and the unknown. He defected from the country in 1980.

    As a member of the American Alliance of Museums, Hebrew Home at Riverdale by RiverSpring Health is committed to publicly exhibiting its art collection throughout its 32-acre campus including the Derfner Judaica Museum and a sculpture garden overlooking the Hudson River and Palisades. The Derfner Judaica Museum + The Art Collection provide educational and cultural programming for residents of the Hebrew Home, their families and the general public from throughout New York City, its surrounding suburbs and visitors from elsewhere. Hebrew Home is a nonprofit, non-sectarian geriatric organization serving more than 12,000 elderly persons in greater New York through its resources and community service programs.

    Museum hours: Sunday–Thursday, 10:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m.
    Art Collection and grounds open daily, 10:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m.
    Call 718-581-1596 for holiday hours and to schedule group tours.
    Further information please visit our website

    This exhibition is supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.

  • CONF: Sergei Eisenstein: His Legacy in Film, Psychology and the Visual Arts

    Cambridge Courtauld Russian Art Centre is delighted to announce the upcoming conference:
    Sergei Eisenstein: His Legacy in Film, Psychology and the Visual Arts

    Friday 15 April 2016 - 10:00 am - 6:00 pm
    Saturday 16 April 2016 - 10:00 am - 6:00 pm
    Registration is from 09.30 on both days.

    Venue: Kenneth Clark Lecture Theatre, The Courtauld Institute of Art, Somerset House, Strand, London, WC2R 0RN

    This conference provides a platform for leading Eisenstein experts from around the world to present their current research and to initiate critical discussions about Sergei Eisenstein and his legacy in film, psychology and the visual arts. Hailed as one of the greatest directors of the twentieth century, Sergei Eisenstein is best known for his revolutionary and iconic films from The Battleship Potemkin to Alexander Nevsky and Ivan the Terrible. This conference invites audiences to consider Eisenstein beyond his cinematic achievements.

    Held on the occasion of the exhibition of Eisenstein drawings Unexpected Eisenstein organised by GRAD and Kino Klassika Foundation, it strives to explore for the first time his significant yet often overlooked relationship with England. Unexpected Eisenstein offers a rare opportunity to see this varied and often surprising collection of work. It brings together nearly seventy sketches, designs and printed materials from the Bakhrushin State Theatre Museum and Russian State Archive of Literature and Art (RGALI).

    Organised by Maria Mileeva and Natalia Murray (The Courtauld Institute of Art) with GRAD (Gallery for Russian Arts and Design), Kino Klassika Foundation, CCRAC (Cambridge Courtauld Russian Art Centre)

    Click here to book via Eventbrite

  • Exhibition: Dawn of Manned Space Exploration, Photographed by Leonid Lazarev at The Harriman Institute

    The Kolodzei Art Foundation presents: Dawn of Manned Space Exploration,
    Photographed by Leonid Lazarev at The Harriman Institute, Columbia University
    420 West 118 Street, 12th Floor, NYC
    March 21 to May 20, 2016
    Opening reception for the exhibition on Monday March 21 from 6 to 8 pm.

    Leonid Lazarev is a well‐known Russian photographer, born in 1937 in Moscow. In 1957 he received the Second Prize of International Photo Competition during the 6th World Festival of Youth and Students in Moscow. He graduated from the Moscow Institute of Cinematography (VGIK). Leonid Lazarev is the recipient of numerous prizes and awards, including Soviet Woman Magazine (1960), USSR Photo Exhibition (1961, 1962), the International Competition by New Time magazine in 1974, and participant of many exhibitions, including solo shows at PhotoSouz Gallery in Moscow (2008), at Angel Orensanz Foundation in New York (2010); at Russian Cultural Center (Washington DC). From 1961 to 1984 he worked for the International Youth and Students Festival in USSR as the special events photographer for USSR Ministry of Culture. Since 1985 he works as a syndicated photographer with freelance assignments for the Moscow City Department of Cultural Affairs. Photographs by Leonid Lazarev are featured in many publications and books, including Leonid Lazarev: Selected Photographs (2008) and Leonid Lazarev: Moscow ‐ Waiting for the Future (2009). Leonid Lazarev lives and works in Moscow.

    In 2016 the Kolodzei Art Foundation celebrates 25 years of supporting Russian and Eastern European Art.

    The Kolodzei Art Foundation, Inc., a US-based 501(c)(3) not-for-profit public foundation started in 1991, organizes exhibitions and cultural exchanges in museums and cultural centers in the United States, Russia and other countries, often utilizing the considerable resources of the Kolodzei Collection of Russian and Eastern European Art, publishes books on Russian art, and provides art supplies to Russian artists.

    The Kolodzei Collection of Russian and Eastern European Art is one of the world’s largest private art collections, and consists of over 7,000 works, including paintings, drawings, sculptures, photographs and videos, by more than 300 artists from Russia and the former Soviet Union. For additional information visit www.KolodzeiArt.org or email

    Weblink: http://harriman.columbia.edu/event/kolodzei-art-foundation-presents-dawn-manned-space-exploration-photographed-leonid-lazarev

  • Exhibition: What Remains: Asya Dodina and Slava Polishchuk at Narthex Gallery, St. Peter’s Church

    St. Peter’s Church and the Kolodzei Art Foundation are pleased to present
    What Remains: Asya Dodina and Slava Polishchuk at Narthex Gallery, St. Peter’s Church 619 Lexington Ave (at 54th Street) New York City
    March 18 – May 9, 2016.
    Opening reception on Thursday, April 7, 2016 from 6pm to 9pm.

    The series What Remains by Russian-American artists Asya Dodina and Slava Polishchuk appeal to the viewer on both analytical and emotional levels: their philosophical reflections on art drive their artistic process, alluding to the ephemeral nature of contemporary society and to the passage of time.

    Asya Dodina and Slava Polishchuk wrote: “Witnessing the destructive power of Hurricane Sandy and the unspeakable tragedies that it brought, we started our project What Remains. The project is addressed to the themes of loss and memory. Images of empty nests floating in nowhere; fragments of plants, drawn with graphite, juxtaposed to debris of the computers; cell phones, assembled on the canvas and then covered with splashes of paint. Images are symbols of lost lives and homes, but at the same time they are symbols of hope.” Personal and cultural memory acquire a spatial embodiment. The artists extract and elevate visual images from the past, dramatize and transform them in order to arrive at something more universal, something common to the entire human experience. Their artistic explorations and searches are very organic, being that they are brought forth by their internal need for creativity and driven by an original method of thought, giving rise to an intensely emotional condition later realized in painting and works on paper. Juxtaposition and collision of different styles, aesthetics, media, combinations of elaborate fine details, textures, and remnants of computers interweaved onto Japanese paper; the artists construct their artworks on the intensity of coexistence of opposite extremes, playing on the ambivalence of meaning, encouraging discussion of their work. Asya Dodina and Slava Polishchuk have been working on the series What Remains for the last five years.

    About the artists:
    Asya Dodina was born in Moscow, Russia. She received an M.F.A. from Brooklyn College, City University of New York (CUNY), and a B.F.A. from The State Moscow Art Institute named after V. Surikov. Her awards and honors include the Medal of the Russian Academy of the Arts, and Project Grants from the New York State Council of the Arts.

    Slava Polishchuk was born in 1961 in Klintsy (Russia) and worked in Moscow. He received an M.F.A. from Brooklyn College, CUNY; a B.A from Brooklyn College, CUNY, and diploma from the 1905 Art School in Moscow. His awards and honors include Project Grants for Exhibitions, the NY State Council of the Arts, NY; The Charles G. Shaw Memorial Award for Excellence in Painting, Brooklyn College, CUNY, NY; The Joan Mitchell Foundation Nominee; Jewish Artists Awards Finalist, The Ben Uri Gallery, London.

    Asya Dodina and Slava Polishchuk work in collaboration since 2003, they live and work in New York.

    Dodina and Polishchuk have had several solo/duo exhibitions. Their solo or joint works have been featured in many museums and galleries including: International Center of Arts, Remagen, Germany, the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts, Moscow; Lithuanian State Museum of Art, Vilnius, Lithuania; The Russian Academy of Art, Moscow; Chelsea Art Museum, New York; B’nai B’rith Klutznic National Jewish Museum, Washington, DC; Kentler International Drawing Space, NY; Museum of Russian Art, Jersey City, NJ; Pace University Gallery, NY; Brooklyn College Gallery, NY; Hunter College Gallery, NY; The Alumni Gallery, St. Joseph College, NY; Künstlerforum, Bonn, Germany; Drawing Center, NY; Paul and Lulu Hilliard University Art Museum, Lafayette, LA; the Glasgow School of Art in Scotland. Dodina and Polishchuk solo or joint works are in many museum and public collections including: State Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow; Lithuanian State Museum of Jewish Art, Vilnius, Lithuania; Jane Voorhees Zimmerli Art Museum, The Norton and Nancy Dodge Collection of Nonconformist Art from the Soviet Union, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ; Kolodzei Art Foundation, NJ; Brooklyn College Library, CUNY, NY; Pace University of New York, NY; Fox & Fowle Architects, NY; Safe-T-Gallery, NY; Moscow Union of the Artists, Moscow; Russian Academy of Art, Moscow; Russian Ministry of Culture, Moscow.

    About St. Peter’s Church:
    Saint Peter’s Church contributes to New York’s vibrant art scene by hosting rotating exhibitions in two prominent gallery spaces. Exhibitions typically explore spirituality in its broadest sense, provoking discussion regarding art’s place in culture, in spiritual thought and in daily life. The Chapel of the Good Shepherd (1977) at St. Peter’s Church is the only existing NYC environment designed by Louise Nevelson (born 1899 in Poltava Governorate of the Russian Empire; died in 1988 in NY).

    St. Peter’s Church 619 Lexington Ave. at 54th St. New York, NY 10022 http://saintpeters.org Gallery hours: daily 9:00 A.M. - 11:00 P.M

    About The Kolodzei Art Foundation, Inc., a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit public foundation started in 1991, organizes exhibitions and cultural exchanges in museums and cultural centers in the United States, Russia and other countries (often utilizing the considerable resources of the Kolodzei Collection of Russian and Eastern European Art), and publishes books on Russian art, For additional information visit www.KolodzeiArt.org or Email

  • CFP: REPRESENTING ART HISTORY IN THE BALTIC COUNTRIES: EXPERIENCES AND PROSPECTS

    CFP: REPRESENTING ART HISTORY IN THE BALTIC COUNTRIES: EXPERIENCES AND PROSPECTS
    3rd Conference of Baltic Art Historians

    Art History Department of the Art Academy of Latvia
    and the Latvian National Museum of Art
    Riga, 6–8 October 2016

    The Art History Department of the Art Academy of Latvia in collaboration with the Institute of Art History of the same institution and the Latvian National Museum of Art restarts the series of conferences of Baltic art historians, initiated by two meetings of the previous years – The Geographies of Art History in the Baltic Region in 2009, hosted by the Estonian Academy of Art together with the Estonian Association of Art Historians in Tallinn, and (Un)blocked Memory: Writing Art History in Baltic Countries in 2011, co-organized by the Vytautas Magnus University and the Vilnius Academy of Arts in Kaunas.

    The agenda of art historians in the three countries during the five years since the last of these events has seen certain changes. New volumes of national art histories are published and being prepared, new opportunities of the digital era are tested to learn the benefits and shortcomings of virtual reconstructions and internet-based resources. New museum spaces for art are being created in theory and practice. Already these and many other steps made give ground for critical self-reflection and discussion, going back from the present developments and future prospects to the lessons of the past and vice versa. Much more important transformations, however, have taken place during twenty-five years since the re-establishment of Baltic independence. In 2001, after the first decade of this span of time, Latvian art historian Eduards Kļaviņš wrote that our art history “is still climbing out of the ruins of the previous methodological barracks, trying both to preserve something of the old and at the same time to find better materials and technologies for more solid buildings”. What and how has been built ever since on this post-socialist construction site? Or perhaps the site with its ruins has been also used as a shipyard for building vessels able to navigate in unexplored waters? If so where have these journeys lead and how have they changed the pre-existing maps of art history? How do the active fleets function and how and the ‘maritime museums’ or ‘cemeteries of ships’ look like?

    Swedish art historian Dan Karlholm, in his book Art of Illusion: The Representation of Art History in Nineteenth-Century Germany and Beyond (Bern etc.: Peter Lang, 2004; 2nd ed. 2006), extended “the concept of historiography to include not just textual or institutional endeavours, but a host of different images as well”, dealing with “practices of representing art history in various media”. The organizers hope that the perspective of this extended critical historiography can provide a broader look at art history as a practice and product, a process and its result at the same time.

    Suggested topics and their combinations include (but are not limited to):
    • Construction site on the ruins or a shipyard?: Art history as a discipline during twenty-five years of Baltic independence
    • The changing discourse and idiomatic varieties: Baltic art history(-ies) since the inception of the discipline
    • Mapping space and time: Areas and segments of the regional art histories, their state of research and representation
    • Parallel efforts towards an integrated art history: Established elements, ‘new’ components and remaining boundaries
    • Written, published, illustrated, collected, exhibited, musealised, digitalised: The media-based aspect of art history throughout times
    • Identity, visibility and interaction: Baltic art history(-ies) in the interdisciplinary and international cultural context

    Both general surveys and case studies focused on contemporary or historical issues are welcome. Contributions are expected from Baltic and foreign scholars including graduate / PhD students researching the visual arts, architecture, design and related areas.

    Working language of the conference is English. Presentations should be 20 minutes long. Abstracts (max. 2500 characters incl. spaces / 400 words) with a short CV should be sent to Kristiāna Ābele by 15 May 2016. Accepted papers will be notified by 1 June 2016.

    Participation in the conference is free of charge. Organizers will provide participants with accommodation in Riga. Selected papers will be published in a peer-reviewed journal.

    All recipients and readers of this CFP are invited to share it to all possibly interested colleagues both in the Baltic States and abroad.

    Academic board
    Kristiāna Ābele (Art Academy of Latvia – Institute of Art History)
    Ginta Gerharde-Upeniece (Latvian National Museum of Art)
    Silvija Grosa (Art Academy of Latvia – Art History Department)
    Giedrė Jankevičiūtė (Lithuanian Culture Research Institute)
    Dalia Klajumienė (Vilnius Academy of Arts – Institute of Art Research)
    Krista Kodres (Estonian Academy of Arts – Institute of Art History)
    Tiina-Mall Kreem (Art Museum of Estonia)

    Convenors
    Silvija Grosa (project director), Kristiāna Ābele and Ginta Gerharde-Upeniece

    Information
    Silvija Grosa, Kristiana Abele

    The conference is supported by the State Culture Capital Foundation (Latvia), the State Research Programme Letonika (Latvia), the Art Academy of Latvia and the Latvian National Museum of Art.

  • Exhibition: ecologEAST--Art and Nature Beyond the Wall

    Exhibition: ecologEAST
    Art and Nature Beyond the Wall
    March 18–June 26, 2016

    Opening: March 17, 6:30–10pm

    Parco Arte Vivente (PAV)
    Via Giordano Bruno 31
    10134 Turin
    Italy

    T +39 011 318 2235

    parcoartevivente.it Curated by Marco Scotini

    Closely linked to the Earthrise exhibition dedicated to the Italian artistic scene in the 1970s, the PAV is continuing its investigations into the pioneers of the relationship between artistic practices and the natural environment, this time moving towards the East and tracing a constellation of complementary experiences generated under Socialism. EcologEAST is the first exhibition in Italy presenting non-official, avant-garde artistic research working with the environment and spread throughout Central Europe: from Poland to the former Czechoslovakia, from Romania to Hungary and the former Yugoslavia. The differences in context, primarily from an ideological point of view, make it difficult to make their approach comparable with that developed by western Earth workers and Land artists, over and well beyond the appearance of the strategies used.

    At the start of the 1970s, the topic of the environment which emerged in full in the West, did not appear to have been stopped by the Iron Curtain. This is not because the crisis in nature stood, by its very statute, apart from the economy, society and politics and, therefore, would be self-explanatory. But, on the contrary, precisely because the origins of its deterioration lay fully within these factors, it is necessary to ask ourselves what it is then that unites both the East and the West under this aspect. One of the fathers of political ecology such as André Gorz responded, instinctively, that the problem lies in both cases, in seeing “growth” as the answer to all ills.

    In 1977, André Gorz wrote: “All those on the left who refuse to tackle the problem of equity without growth, demonstrate the fact that, for them, socialism is nothing more than the continuation, using other means, of capitalist social relationships and culture, of the bourgeois way of life and consumer models.” Precisely because the error lies in having taken over the production methods of capitalism, without changing them, Gorz concluded: “Growth-oriented capitalism is dead. Growth-oriented socialism, which closely resembles it, reflects the distorted image of our past, not of our future.”

    Post 1968 counter-culture, technological innovation and the ecology debate were at the heart of a new radical trend which, from the second half of the 1960s saw a series of artists, in different regional contexts, developing a multiplicity of ephemeral practices (performative and conceptual) as direct actions taking place, mainly, within the natural environments at the margins of the cities and recorded in photographic documents or as exposés of pollution through videos or postcards, graphic maps and visual cosmologies as in the case of Sikora, the recovery of local traditions and recourse to organic materials, irrigation systems and community associations such as that inaugurated by the OHO Group near Šempas, or urban demonstrations with the involvement of the public, as in the case of the TOK Group in Zagreb.

    The importance of these molecular actions lies in the reversed relationship between visibility and invisibility that they presented, as they also did with regard to the end of the humanist perspective that they pursued. The landscape was thus transformed almost imperceptibly, precisely because every hierarchy between humankind and nature is destroyed. But, above all, the underlying role of these actions was to provide the opportunity to indirectly criticize the political themes of the moment using, however, the concept of the environmental crisis which, as such, appeared to be detached from any expressly ideological implications. But, on the contrary, its aim was exactly that of promoting a political solution.

    Works of Peter Bartoš (Slovakia), Imre Bukta (Hungary), Stano Filko (Slovakia), Ana Lupas (Romania), Teresa Murak (Poland), OHO Group (Slovenia), Pécs Workshop (Hungary), Zorka Ságlová (Czech Republic), Rudolf Sikora (Slovakia), Petr Štembera (Czech Republic), TOK Group (Croatia), Jiří Valoch (Czech Republic)

    Realized with the support of Compagnia San Paolo.
    Thanks to Marinko Sudac Collection, Zagreb; Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw; MSU Zagreb; AMT Project Bratislava; P420 Bologna.

  • Exhibition: The 1980s. Today's Beginnings?

    The 1980s. Today’s Beginnings?
    Featuring NSK
    April 16–September 25, 2016

    Opening: April 16, 3pm

    Van Abbemuseum
    Bilderdijklaan 10
    Eindhoven
    The Netherlands
    Hours: Tuesday–Sunday 11am–5pm,
    Thursday 11am–9pm

    T +31 40 238 1000
    info@vanabbemuseum.nl

    vanabbemuseum.nl

    The 1980s. Today’s Beginnings? explores the 1980s from six European perspectives, examining the relevance of this transformative decade for today. The project includes artworks, music, TV, graphic, and archival materials that were produced during moments of state structures in transition. Culture was central in responding to or predicting these shifts, highlighting the reorientation that took place between civil society and the state. As Europe is in the midst of a defining transition in terms of how it sees itself and its relationship to others, it feels urgent to examine key moments in identity formation and self-organisation from the recent past.

    The material presented draws from projects carried out by partners of the museum confederation L’Internationale alongside research undertaken by the Van Abbemuseum.

    Different European perspectives
    The project gives space to multiple narratives and voices, beginning on April 16 with three presentations:

    Talking Back. Counter Culture in the Netherlands
    Presenting Dutch counter culture through the squatters’ movement and its cultural spin-offs who used video, sound, and photography to subvert mass media’s manipulative patterns of representation.

    Artists: Catrien Ariëns, Hans Breder, Daniel Brun, Michel Cardena, Ulises Carrión, René Daniëls, Dedo - Harry Heytink, Sandra Derks, Jaap Drupsteen, David Garcia & Annie Wright, General Idea, Heiner Holtappels, Patricia Kaersenhout, Jouke Kleerebezem, Bertien van Manen, Juan Maranas, Raul Marroquin, Mariano Maturana, Joost Seelen, Servaas, Rob Scholte, Lydia Schouten, Sluik/Kurpershoek, Stansfield/Hooykaas, Moniek Toebosch Curator: Diana Franssen (Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven)

    Thinking Back. A Montage of Black Art in Britain
    In 1980s Britain, a powerful conversation emerged amongst black artists and thinkers. The presentation includes key artworks, films, and archives from this pivotal moment when ideas of resistance, expression, and identity formation coalesced.

    Artists: John Akomfrah, Rasheed Araeen, Black Audio Film Collective, Sonia Boyce, Chila Burman, Eddie Chambers, Rotimi Fani-Kayode, Mona Hatoum, Lubaina Himid, Gavin Jantjes, Claudette Johnson, Isaac Julien, Keith Piper, Ingrid Pollard, Donald Rodney, Marlene Smith, Maud Sulter
    Curator: Nick Aikens (Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven)

    NSK: From Kapital to Capital. An Event in the Final Decade of Yugoslavia Presenting the events of the different Neue Slowenische Kunst (NSK) collectives, with a focus on Laibach, IRWIN, and Scipion Nasice Sisters, highlighting their fundamental goal to construct a new artistic constellation.

    Artists: Laibach, IRWIN, Scipion Nasice Theatre, Cosmokinetic Theatre Red Pilot, Cosmokinetic Cabinet Noordung, New Collectivism, Department of Pure and Applied Philosophy, Builders, Retrovision, Film.
    Curator: Zdenka Badovinac (Moderna galerija, Ljubljana)

    The presentation of NSK lasts until June 26 and from July 2 three new presentations will be added:

    Video-Nou/Servei de Video Comunitari: Video-intervention in the Spanish Transition Presents the pioneering collective project by Video-Nou/Servei de Video Comunitari who documented social changes and initiated activist TV stations, as Spain transitioned into a democracy following the death of Franco.

    Artists: Video-Nou/Servei de Video Comunitari Curator: Teresa Grandas (MACBA, Barcelona)

    How Did We Get Here? Turkey in the 1980s This presentation traces the origins of the current context of Turkey through social movements, artworks, and elements of popular culture.

    Artists: Aslı Çavuşoğlu and Barış Doğrusöz Archives: Yücel Tunca, Aziz Nesin Archive, Füsun Ertuğ, Gençay Gürsoy, İbrahim Eren, Gülnur Savran, Murat Öneş, Nilgün Öneş, Tuğrul Eryılmaz, Murat Çelikkan, Serdar Ateşer Curator: Merve Elveren (SALT, Istanbul)

    Archivo Queer? Screwing the System (Madrid 1989–95) An open archive including documentation of queer movements when the AIDS crisis was a pandemic. The projects subvert hetero-centric and patriarchal forms of categorisation.

    Artists: Archivo Queer? is comprised of material drawn from collective production by activists who collaborated with LSD and Radical Gai Curator: Fefa Vila Núñez (independent researcher, i.c.w. Museo Reina Sofia, Madrid)

    Programme curators
    Nick Aikens & Diana Franssen (exhibition), Gemma Medina (mediation)

    Design
    Kerstin Meyer-Ebrecht (architecture), Roosje Klap (graphics)

    Van Abbemuseums 80th anniversary
    The Van Abbemuseum celebrates by being open for 80 hours from Thursday, April 14 until Sunday, April 17.

    Bosch Grand Tour
    Part of the Bosch Grand Tour

    L’Internationale
    Part of the five-year programme The Uses of Art, on the legacy of 1848 and 1989.

    Subsidisers
    Supported by Mondriaan Fund, the Culture Programme of the European Union, Bosch 500, and The Art of Impact.