Monthly Archive: November 2003

Interview with Pawel Althamer

Pawel Althamer is a sculptor, performance artist, action artist, creator of installations and video art. Between 1988 and 1993 Althamer attended classes in the Sculpture Department of the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw. In 1991 he exhibited with a number of his colleagues from Kowalski’s studio. The group included Katarzyna Kozyra, Jacek Markiewicz, Jacek Adamas and others, and effectively co-created the phenomenon of “pracownia Kowalskiego” / “Kowalski’s Workshop,” otherwise know as the “Kowalnia” / “Smithery,” which was in its essence one of the leading groups of young Polish artists of the 1990s. In the middle of the 1990s Althamer’s … Read more

Liberating Power of Exiled Laughter: Gender, Caricature, and the Antifascist Movement in Prewar Czechoslovakia. The Case of Simplicus.

When Hitler took power in 1933, many artists and intellectuals left Germany and continued their work after emigration. One of the countries that provided a new “home” to a number of those exiled was Czechoslovakia.

By January 1934, a group of German artists had already published in Prague the first issue of a satiric weekly magazine called Simplicus. Although the Czech version of this periodical was terminated early on, the German version, initiated by Hans Nathan and Heinz Pol, continued to be published under the title Der Simpl through 1939.

Bringing together Czech and German artists and writers, including … Read more

Modernity and Tradition between Ideologies: The Pragmatic Architecture of Emil Bellus (1899-1979)

In discussing the work of an important Slovak architect of the 20th century, we would like to investigate how changes in ideological paradigms have influenced the character of architecture, how they have limited creative freedom, how they have not led to the manifestation of pragmatic results, and how the official architectural model has been rejected.

We would like to observe how the peripheral regional society deals with radical modernizing trends and how the national-romantic tendency is enforced at the same time.

We would like to demonstrate how a richly layered architectural heritage is created thanks to a non-priori opened periphery … Read more

Socialist Evening Realistic Post


It does not take an experienced connoisseur to notice the uncanny similarity between the widely popular art of Norman Rockwell and certain artworks of Socialist realism.

Similarly, some of the official art created in the Soviet Union during Rockwell’s most successful years could easily pass as emblematic of the Saturday Evening Post covers depicting that era.

This can be a confusing realization given that these images originated from the two very polarized ideological standpoints of that time. Is this a mere coincidence of style, or are these two forms of expression somehow more deeply bound?

The art of the … Read more

Urban Landscapes: National Imagery and Its Present Day Articulations


In this short essay I intend to investigate certain representational images and architectural articulations of the present-day Ukraine. By doing so, I attempt to critique the practice of architecture in a specific manner.

Recognizing architecture’s commitment to represent an invisible “reality,” which stays behind the object of representation, and architecture’s role in building up the “collective memory” – one’s reenactment into the life of community, city, nation or country, I decided to explore the ways the social space and the scope of national imagery is set into a work of architecture.

Several reasons influenced my decision. First, let’s agree that … Read more

Show Space: Curating Art in and from East Central Europe

Architectures of Gender. Contemporary Women’s Art in Poland. SculptureCenter, Long Island City, New York, 11.04. – 8.06. 2003

Participating artists: Izabella Gustowska, Elzbieta Jablonska, Katarzyna Jozefowicz, Agnieszka Kalinowska, Katarzyna Kozyra, Zofia Kulik, Natalia LL, Dorota Nieznalska, Hanna Nowicka-Grochal, Paulina Olowska, Anna Plotnicka, Jadwiga Sawicka, Dominika Skutnik, Monika Sosnowska, Julita Wojcik, Karolina Wysocka.

In this new series, curators from East-Central Europe talk about recent exhibition projects. We begin the series with a report by Aneta Szylak (gdansk) on her recent project Constructing Architectures of Gender. Aneta Szylak, curator based in Gdansk, Vice-President of the … Read more

Sebestyén Kodolányi and Csaba Uglár: “Abuse”

Sebestyén Kodolányi and Csaba Uglár: Abuse. Project Room, Museum of Contemporary Art/Ludwig Museum Budapest, November 3-25, 2002 

Sebestyén Kodolányi’s and Csaba Uglár’s project abuses the toposes of confraternity and the noble-spirited sentiments of men’s brotherhood. The “documentary film,” an experiment, documents a fraud. The “spiritual community” is dwelling on some scholarly topic first in a room of utterly mysterious atmosphere, then sets out and marches along against a backdrop of the streets, the blocks, and the inhabitants of the city.

The group of men, in garments that imitate sacred habits, visualise both the brotherhood of men in the gospels … Read more