Organized by Elena Sorokina and Nataša Petrešin-Bachelez
Proposed by the Parisien committee of the Public School
SESSION 1 April 24th 2010 15:00 Pietro Bianchi, Renata Poljak, Société Réaliste, Oxana Timofeeva, Elena Sorokina and Natasa Petresin Bachelez
SESSION 2 September 26th 2010 14:00 Guillaume Désanges, Martha Kirszenbaum, Keti Chukhrov, Elena Sorokina and Natasa Petresin Bachelez
After the collapse of the Soviet block, communism as idea, image or problem has been regarded as "outmoded, absurd, deplorable or criminal, depending on the case". Today, it is often presented by the mainstream media as a parenthesis of history, an aberration of the 20th century, as "a completely forgotten word, only to be identified with a lost experience". Although the communist hypotheses of previous eras may no longer be valid, their histories, narratives and key notions have never ceased to spark attention and inform recent discussions such as the communal versus the common, and material versus immaterial property, to name just a few. Perceived from a greater distance today, communism has re-emerged as a topic for investigation in artistic and exhibition production, that reflects it in diverse ways, addressing the relevance of the term today or inviting provocative comparisons with the present.
This seminar aims to present various works that recast ideas related to communism and revisit it as a complex and diverse arena of political and aesthetic attitudes, which varied between nations, communities and historical periods. By no means does the seminar intends to take a nostalgic tour through the past decades, but rather seeks to address the topic through concrete art and exhibition projects realized recently. All of them are trying to deconstruct the idea of monolith, still very present in today’s reception, and to recuperate various episodes, stories and notably, the "communist apocrypha" - texts, music, visual production - which have never been part of the established ideological canon, and whose intellectual patterns shed new light on what the contemporary uses of the notion of communism might be. Instead of treating communism as pure political abstraction, the projects presented by the seminar deal with concepts, events and/or particular personalities related to communism and its history which have survived the Bildersturm of the recent past and can be artistically reactivated.
The seminar will take place in Brussels and Paris, in both cases at The Public School.
Brussels: April 23rd, 3-6pm
Participants: Agency, Dessislava Dimova, Albert Heta, Olga Kisseleva
for more information please follow the link: http://brussels.thepublicschool.org/class/2336
Paris: April 24th, 3-6pm
Participants: Pietro Bianchi, Renata Poljak, Société Réaliste, Oxana Timofeeva
for more information, please follow the link: http://paris.thepublicschool.org/class/1773
Nataša Petrešin-Bachelez is an independent curator and critic who is based in Paris and Ljubljana. She is a Ph.D. candidate at the EHESS in Paris where she also runs a seminar on contemporary artistic practices with Patricia Falguieres, Elisabeth Lebovici, and Hans Ulrich Obrist. She is currently working as an associate curator at the Centre Pompidou in Paris. She is a member of the editorial board of ARTMargins and Maska.
Elena Sorokina is Paris/Brussels based curator and critic. She was a Whitney Museum of American Art ISP fellow in New York in 2004. Her recent projects include "Petroliana" at the Moscow Biennial 2007; "Laws of Relativity" at the Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, Turin, Italy; "On Traders’ Dilemmas" at YBCA, San Francisco, 2008; and “Scènes Centrales" at Tri Postal, Lille, France, 2009. She has been writing for Artforum, Moscow Art Magazine, Die Zeit and other publications.