ARTMargins Online
Cyberfest 2014 Print E-mail
Exhibition Reviews
Written by Natasha Kurchanova (New York)   
Sunday, 22 February 2015 00:00

Sergey Komarov, Leta & Vladislav Dobrovolsky Computer programming and engineering:  Alexey Grachev.  “Kitchen.” Interactive sound installation, dimensions variable, 2014.  Image courtesy St. Petersburg Arts Project, Inc.One evening last December, an exhibition hall of the Art Center at Kunstquartier Bethanien, a handsome 19th-century building on Berlin's Mariannenplatz, was bustling. It was a usual opening night – with food, wine, crowds of people young and old getting together and talking about art. What could have caught a local by surprise was that most of the visitors spoke Russian. Cyberfest, a yearly festival of new media, which originated in St. Petersburg in 2007, was making its second appearance in Berlin, following its debut in the German capital the previous year. Anna Frants, an artist, curator, and the main financial and organizing force behind the festival, was there with her usual camera hanging around her neck, snapping pictures. Marina Koldobskaya, also an artist and a co-curator of the exhibition in Berlin, was mingling with the crowd. Frants and Koldobskaya came up with the theme of the festival and brought together artists whose work addressed displacement, and relocation. The resulting satire, humor, or nostalgia restage the loss of place as a lasting performative event.

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A Way to Follow: Interview with Piotr Piotrowski Print E-mail
Interviews
Written by Richard Kosinsky, Jan Elantkowski, Barbara Dudás (Lublin)   
Monday, 26 January 2015 00:00

Piotr Piotrowski is a professor in the Art History Department of Adam Mickiewicz University, Poznań, and a research fellow at the Graduate School for East and South-East European Studies at the universities of Munich and Regensburg. He is the author of several books, including: Meanings of Modernism (2009, 2011), In the Shadow of Yalta (2009), Art after Politics (2007), Critical Museum (2011), and Art and Democracy in Post-Communist Europe (2012). Between 2009 and 2010, he was the director of the National Museum in Warsaw, and in 2010 he was the recipient of the Igor Zabel Award for Culture and Theory. This interview was occassioned by the recent international conference Piotrowski organized on global art history, East European Art Seen from Global Perspectives: Past and Present, that took place in Lublin, Poland, October 24-27, 2014.(For further information about the program of the conference, the lectures and the speakers, visit: http://www.konferencja.labirynt.com/en.)

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Interview with Moritz Pankok About Ceija Stojka and the Re-Evaluation of Roma Art Print E-mail
Interviews
Written by Written by Árpád Bak (Budapest)   
Sunday, 30 November 2014 00:00

Moritz Pankok is a German scenographer, director, curator and fine artist living in Berlin. A great-nephew of expressionist artist Otto Pankok, who documented Sinti life in late Weimar-era Germany and was labelled a degenerate artist by the Nazis, he is interested in socially engaged art projects. Pankok is the art director of Galerie Kai Dikhas, a private gallery in Berlin dedicated to Roma contemporary art. He was curator of the recent exhibition of work by the Austrian-Romani painter Ceija Stojka, at Gallery8, Budapest, the nonprofit counterpart of Kai Dikhas.(We Were Ashamed, Gallery8, Budapest, Hungary, Aug 2-Oct 10, 2014.,Galerie Kai Dikhas and Gallery8 – Roma Contemporary Art Space are organizationally unrelated institutions, founded and operating independently from each other.) Stojka, who died last year, was a survivor of the concentration camps at Auschwitz, Bergen-Belsen and Ravensbrück. The seventeen works in the exhibition We Were Ashamed represented both groups of works that make up her oeuvre: the "dark cycle," consisting mainly of ink drawings and also some oil paintings that address the traumatic memories of the concentration camps; and the "bright" series, exploring Stojka's prewar childhood in an itinerant horse-trader family.

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Interview with Katalin Cseh and Adam Czirak About the Second Public Sphere in the former Eastern Bloc Print E-mail
Interviews
Written by Andrea Bátorová (Bratislava)   
Thursday, 23 October 2014 00:00

The three-day conference Performing Arts in the Second Public Sphere (org. by Katalin Cseh and Adam Czirak, Free University Berlin, May 9 -11, 2014) focused on the second public sphere as a space belonging to unofficial, event-based activities in the countries of the former Eastern Bloc between the 1960s and '80s. The organizers' idea was to redefine the borderline between the official and the unofficial cultural realms by examining underrepresented artistic practices located in the often invisible niches of the state-socialist cultural apparatus. The topics addressed by conference participants ranged from subversive artistic practices and the role of gender in them to anti-politics, dissident life, the formation of networks as conduits for nonconformist activities, and the micro- and macro mechanisms of cultural agency in the official social state apparatuses.

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Mladen Miljanović: At the Edge, acb Gallery, Budapest Print E-mail
Exhibition Reviews
Written by Sándor Hornyik (Budapest)   
Wednesday, 01 October 2014 00:00

Mladen Miljanović, "At the Edge," performance at acb Gallery, Budapest (2014). Image courtesy of the artist. Photo by Csaba Aknay.At the beginning of his career, Bosnian artist Mladen Miljanović prepared ironically toned, but rather serious, plans of attack (Artattack series, 2007) for occupying the great museums of the world. Actually, he painted military symbols on the maps of contemporary art museums and galleries representing how he could occupy their spaces. Of his targets, ironically, Budapest was the last "captured" city, as the artist showcased works in the exhibition spaces of New York, London and Venice before showing in the contemporary art institutions of neighboring Hungary. While an overview of the underlying cultural and geopolitical factors surrounding this would lead beyond the scope of this review, it is worth pointing out that the works of Miljanović, one of the stars of the 2013 Venice Biennale, once again enriched the "portfolio" of a private gallery rather than strengthening the profile of a state financed institution. Tijana Stepanovic, curator of the artist's recent solo exhibition at acb Gallery, Budapest, perhaps wished to reflect on this situation by titling the show At the Edge.

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Zsófia Bán and Hedvig Turai, eds., “Exposed Memories: Family Pictures in Private and Collective Memory” (Book Review) Print E-mail
Book Reviews
Written by Katherine Hill Reischl (Princeton)   
Wednesday, 17 September 2014 00:00

Roland Barthes's first reflections in Camera Lucida are propelled by the pleasure of viewing the photographic image. At the end of his survey of a wide photographic landscape, Barthes comes to realize his failing as an "imperfect mediator" whose investigation of photography led only to a clearer understanding of his own desire, and not "the nature (the eidos) of Photography" (Barthes, 60). Perhaps paradoxically, Barthes's turn to the "universal" in the latter half of Camera Lucida, to the ontology of the photograph, is founded on a more personal and intimate journey: the narrative exploration of the precious family photograph of his departed mother.

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Irina Botea: It is now a matter of learning hope, at threewalls, Chicago Print E-mail
Exhibition Reviews
Written by Susan Snodgrass (Chicago)   
Monday, 11 August 2014 00:00

Irina Botea, Still from “It is now a matter of learning hope,” HD video (2013-14). Image courtesy of threewalls gallery, Chicago.Throughout her practice that spans video, film, performance and installation, Irina Botea appropriates the instruments of mediation that shape the politics of memory to reconfigure the way history frames our contemporary consciousness. Employing strategies of role-playing, reenactment, and recitation, she recasts historical events, often from her native Romania, to remediate political traumas of the past while offering alternate views of reality than those produced by mainstream media.

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Special Issue: Art and the Environment in East-Central Europe Introduction Print E-mail
Articles
Written by Janeil Engelstad   
Wednesday, 30 July 2014 00:00

Oto Hudec, “If I Had a River,” 2012, mixed media, installation view. Image courtesy of the artist.Art and the Environment in East-Central Europe is an editorial project born from interviews and other forms of interaction with artists and cultural producers concerned, in one way or another, with the idea and the material reality of what goes by the name of the "natural environment." In the different pieces collected within this project, the term "environment" unfolds into a broad variety of concepts and artistic practices that do not, and should not, become homogenized. A survey rather than a deep investigation, Art and the Environment in East-Central Europe covers a wide range of art and ideas connected to ecology, sustainability and the nexus between environment, art, and political action, from the perspective of the following participants: Barbara Benish, Nina Czegledy, Maja and Reuben Fowkes, Oto Hudec, Tamás Kaszás, Attila Nemes, Marjetica Potrč, Rudolf Sikora, Matej Vakula, Kasia Worpus-Wrońska, and Jana Želibská. The project, which stretches across ARTMargins print journal (#3.2. 2014) and ARTMargins Online, investigates pronounced, and so far largely unnoticed, environmental accents within nonofficial art practices in the countries of the former Eastern Bloc, including escapism, redefinitions of public space, permaculture and romantic views of the natural world.

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New In ARTMargins Print

ARTMargins Print has released its new issue, 3.3. (October 2014)!

ArticlesMathias Danbolt (Copenhagen) and Sven Spieker (Berlin) present a roundtable on the "critical archive." Karin Zitzewitz (East Lansing) discusses the late work of Tyeb Mehta and K. G. Subramanyan. Jenny Lin on Michelangelo Antonioni's documentary film Chung Kuo / Cina.

In the Document section, we present a previously untranslated, seminal text by artist and writer Ismail Saray (translation and introduction, Duygu Demir). FREE ACCESS.

Artist Project: Rayyane Tabet, Four Encounters With Sculpture. Exclusively produced for ARTMargins. FREE ACCESS.

Review Articles: 
Francesca dal Lago (Paris) on China and the "Global" Contemporary Art Canon. Contemporary Chinese Art: Primary Documents (New York Museum of Modern Art in 2010). Pamela Karimi on the Iran Modern Exhibition (Asia Society in New York, 2014). 

Click here for more information at the MIT Press ARTMargins site.

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Two independent outlets, in separate media, of one and the same publication.

LOGO: ARTMargins Print

PRINT: Contemporary art in a global context

Published triquarterly by the MIT Press, ARTMargins provides a forum for the discussion of postmodernism and post-colonialism, and their critiques; art and politics in transitional countries and regions; post-socialism and neo-liberalism; and the problem of global art and global art history.

LOGO: ARTMargins Online

ONLINE: Central and Eastern Europe

Founded in 1999, ARTMargins Online publishes articles, interviews, essays, and reviews devoted to contemporary art. Unlike ARTMargins (print), ARTMargins Online has traditionally had a regional focus, central and Eastern Europe.