Central and Eastern European Art Since 1950

Central and Eastern European Art Since 1950

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In this path-breaking new history, Maja and Reuben Fowkes introduce outstanding artworks and major figures from across central and eastern Europe to reveal the movements, theories and styles that have shaped artistic practice since 1950. They emphasize the particularly rich and varied art scenes of Poland, Czechoslovakia, Hungary and Yugoslavia, extending their gaze at intervals to East Germany, Romania, the Baltic states and the rest of the Balkans.

While politics in the region have been marked by unstable geography and dramatic transitions, artists have forged a path of persistent experiment and innovation. This generously illustrated overview explores the richness of their singular contribution to recent art history. Tracing art-historical changes from the short-lived unison of the socialist realist period to the incredible diversity of art in the post-communist era, the authors examine the repercussions of political events on artistic life - notably the uprisings in Hungary and Czechoslovakia, the Solidarity movement in Poland, and the collapse of the communist bloc. But their primary interest is in the experimental art of the neo-avant-garde that resisted official agendas and engaged with global currents such as performance art, video, multimedia and net art.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 232 pages
  • 150 x 210 x 15.24mm | 480g
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 156 Illustrations, unspecified
  • 0500204373
  • 9780500204375
  • 253,763

Table of contents

Introduction * 1. 1950s: Competing Paths to a Higher Form of Realism * 2. 1960s: Gestures of Liberation * 3. 1970s: Practising Impossible Art * 4. 1980s: Excesses of Non-Conformity * 5. 1990s: Critical Exposures * 6. 2000s: Radical Recollections of the Global Transitioners * 7. 2010s: Sculpting Uncertainty * Conclusion
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Review quote

A strength of this introductory survey is the authors' commitment to showcasing artworks...which reveal degrees of complexity that cut through static claims to identity and politically overdetermined narratives of art in Central and Eastern Europe... In 211 richly illustrated pages, the authors cover seven decades, countless artists and art movements, and numerous countries from the Baltics to the Balkans. Central and Eastern European Art is impressive in its scope and effort to represent artworks from across these diverse geographic and cultural contexts... From the shadow of state socialism, Central and Eastern European Art Since 1950 culls a vibrant, future-oriented account of contemporary art that is galvanized not by a thin hope for Western-style democracy but by a steadfast reevaluation of local histories, collective memories, and artistic traditions... Indispensable.-- "caa.reviews"
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About Maja Fowkes

Maja and Reuben Fowkes are curators and art historians with a focus on the theory and aesthetics of Eastern European art from the socialist era to the present. They are co-directors of the Translocal Institute for Contemporary Art, a research centre in Budapest that operates at the intersection between ecological thought and contemporary art.
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