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Intimate Passports

The Subversive Performances of Tanja Ostojić

Jehanne-Marie Gavarini

The article explores the artwork of Tanja Ostojić, an interdisciplinary artist from Serbia who uses performance art to examine social and political issues. Ostojić in particu- lar expresses the migrant woman’s perspective when facing today’s world of political and economic inequities. With caustic humor, the artist examines who occupies cen- ter positions and who remains in the margins. Ostojić’s subversive performances blur the boundaries between art and life. Her use of her own body, personal history, and identity reflects a feminist perspective. Placing Ostojić’s work in the longer history of performance art, this article analyzes how this provocative artist pushes the boundar- ies of art and culture by denouncing the power dynamics that rule exclusive systems such as the Western-dominated art world and the European Union.

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Keeping the Goddess Alive

Performing Culture and Remembering the Past in Osogbo, Nigeria

Peter Probst

This article focuses on the debate about cultural heritage in the context of art, history, and politics in the Yoruba town of Osogbo in southwest Nigeria. Some forty years ago, Osogbo became the center of a vibrant art scene. Today Osogbo’s fame as a symbol for the renaissance of Yoruba art and culture has faded. What has survived, however, is the debate about the shrines and sculptures shaped by the Austrian-born artist, Susanne Wenger, and her local collaborators in the grove of Osogbo’s guardian deity Osun. It is argued that the present day conflicts about the meaning of the image works standing in the Osun grove are based upon their perception not so much as art but rather as media which in the very sense of the word—mediate between different realms of social importance in terms of time, space, power, and wealth.

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“They don’t even know how to copy”

The discourse on originality in Albania’s art world

Sofia Kalo

artist or someone familiar with Albania’s art world. The claim of the site’s author, however, was clear: that the Albanian-born artists in question had copied their work from Western art producers of different eras and were presenting their publics with

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High Comics Art

The Louvre and the Bande Dessinée

Margaret C. Flinn

This article concerns the eight albums currently available in a series of bandes dessinées commissioned by the Louvre from established, well-respected bédéistes and co-published with Futuropolis since 2005. This successful, high-profile series has elicited positive critical response, but that response has also exposed persistent mutual antagonisms between bande dessinée and the establishment art world as represented by the Louvre Museum. These tensions between 'high' and 'low' culture can be read within the narratives of the albums themselves, in which we see reflexivity used to highlight bande dessinée's artistic value, and various types of obstruction and sensory impairments (realist and supernatural) are used to disrupt quotidian relationships to museum space.

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John Reeve, Ian Wedde, Elizabeth Plumridge, and Conal McCarthy

BIENKOWSKI, Piotr, Communities and Museums as Active Partners: Emerging Learning from the “Our Museum” Initiative

CLIFFORD, James, Returns: Becoming Indigenous in the Twenty-First Century Ian Wedde

MATHUR, Saloni, and Kavita SINGH, eds., No Touching, No Spitting, No Praying: The Museum in South Asia; AHMED, Hilal, Muslim Political Discourse in Postcolonial India: Monuments, Memory, Contestation; PETERSON, Derek K., Kodzo GAVUA, and Ciraj RASSOOL, eds., The Politics of Heritage in Africa: Economies, Histories and Infrastructures; BARNES, Amy Jane, Museum Representations of Maoist China: From Cultural Revolution to Commie Kitsch

SILVERMAN, Ray, ed., Museum as Process: Translating Local and Global Knowledges; ONCIUL, Bryony, Museums, Heritage and Indigenous Voice: Decolonising Engagement; LEVITT, Peggy, Artifacts and Allegiances: How Museums Put the Nation on Display; MURAWSKA-MUTHESIUS, Kataryna and Piotr PIOTROWSKI, eds., From Museum Critique to Critical Museum; BALZAR, David, Curationism: How Curating Took Over the Art World and Everything Else

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The End of Arrogance, the Advent of Persuasion

Public Art in a Multicultural Society

Henri Beunders

In Western societies, the boundaries of the freedom of expression had traditionally been expanding, while the boundaries of religion and 'good morals' had been receding. Since the last decade however, this expansion has slowed down, come to a halt, and ultimately reversed. In Europe, anxiety over the expression of protest through violent means has steadily caused governments to abandon the traditional, seemingly limitless adherence to freedom of expression. Political fear over controversy has come to dominate the climate of commissioning public art. In a polarized world, the debate on what is tolerable has taken on an acute urgency. The art world itself no longer has an answer. After a half-century of autonomy, it has succeeded in demolishing its own authority by ridiculing every aspect of external criticism. The only solution now will be a new form of dialogue with all stakeholders involved.

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‘The Inexhaustible Surface of Things’

Stefano Tamburini's Comic Book Work

Simone Castaldi

Abstract

This article explores the work of Stefano Tamburini (1955–1986) in relationship to the ‘high arts’ in the 1980s. By concentrating on Tamburini's least known works (to this day, among his many works, only the RanXerox saga is actually available for English-speaking readers), it is possible to regard his art as a bridge tying comics with the aesthetic and theoretical preoccupations of many of the leading artists of the postmodern trans-avant-garde of the late-1970s and early-1980s in Italy. This article demonstrates how Tamburini offered a model of comics in dialogue with the rest of the contemporary art world, often taking the lead and generating fruitful exchanges both with the field of literature and the visual arts.

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From the Margins to the Center

The São Paulo Biennial, the Biennale of Sydney, and the Istanbul Biennial

Rebecca Coates

This article explores the continuing evolution of biennials, particularly those outside the traditional European/North American “centers”. From their early beginnings in Venice in 1895, biennials have become one of the most vital and visible sites for the production, distribution, and discussion of contemporary art. A “third wave” of biennials in the 1980s was part of a growing focus on a global “south”, and played a key role in redefining notions of center and periphery in the global contemporary art world. This article shows how the São Paulo, Sydney, and Istanbul biennials were part of these trends toward the “biennialization” of contemporary art, mass spectatorship, the interweaving of the global and the local, and the rise of a generation of nomadic curators and artists whose work exemplified these themes. It argues that the most recent editions of these biennials may reflect a further shift in the evolution of the biennial model: a possible fourth wave, where the biennial provides an international platform for local politics.

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Hugo Frey and Laurike in ‘t Veld

and Lie of Franco (1937) to the contemporary British artists engaging with the borderlines between comic art and the traditional artist’s book, a nuanced set of dialogues link the art world to graphic narrative. As is well-known, thanks in part to

Open access

Sharon A. Kowalsky

artist within the Greek diasporic community and the wider art world. Flora-Caravia's self-representations thus reveal both the limitations that confined women and the possibilities they created for themselves as they challenged the boundaries they