IRWIN (artist group) — East Art Map – Contemporary Art and Eastern Europe

700,00 DKK

East Art Map: Contemporary Art and Eastern Europe is an ambitious attempt to reconstruct the missing histories of contemporary art in Eastern Europe from an East European and artistic perspective. It is perhaps the widest ranging art documentation project ever undertaken by the East on the East

In stock

Description

London: MIT, Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design – University of Michigan, Published by Afterall, 2006. Published very heavy clothed hardcover, with fine jacket. 525 pages plus folding map at end. more than 250 color and b&w reproductions. First edition. Fine clean copy

The IRWIN collective are one of the most important representatives of the Post-Conceptual Art movement in former Yugoslavia. In the early 1980s the famous industrial-punk group Laibach (the German name for Ljubljana: a reference to the Nazi occupation of that city in the second world war) together with other autonomous Slovenian avant-garde groups set up NSK (Neue Slowenische Kunst: New Slovenian Art), a political art collective that undertook some of the most radical and critical forms of experimental art in socialist-period Yugoslavia. Deploying a deliberately provocative mixture of Slovenian nationalist icons, Nazi symbolisms, disco-punk stylistics, Communist totalitarian kitsch, and other extreme ideological symbols, IRWIN sought to free itself of totalitarianism effectively by being more totalitarian than the totalitarians. During this period, philosophers such as Slavoj Zizek and Rastko Mocnik were the theoreticians who most supported the NSK and IRWIN aesthetic ideology. With the breakup of Yugoslavia, the IRWIN groups primary target was shorn of its significance. Somewhat later therefore in 1991, IRWIN redefined itself as a state: specifically the NSK State in Timea micronation with its own embassies and passports. This was a tactical move that was intended rather to add a more critical and performative character to the process of post-socialist renationalization. Like the Russian graphic artists team of Komar and Melamds Sots Art project during the days of the Soviet Union, which set Socialist Realism on its head, IRWIN inverted the realities of socialist-Yugoslavia, introducing the mechanisms of criticism into its work. Lux tenebris, lux mundi et lux veritatis (The light of shadows, the light of the world, the light of truth) is a synthesis of this groups work. According to Marina Grzinic, it functions as an art machine that relies heavily on the Deleuzian concepts of which it makes use. Operating with such concepts as desired and capitalist machines, the realism of the IRWIN/NSK micronation resembles the island in Kostunicas film Underground. The violence and savagery of a divided and fragmented Yugoslavian world shows us the objective in setting up an imaginary country. The Srebrenica Massacre was an important contributor to the establishment of this NSK micronation, which is itself a reaction to the indifference that the civilized capitalist West showed towards these tragic events. Striving to combine aesthetics and the history of art, IRWIN employs surprise effectively in its work, which is formulated by installing pictorial iconography into the history of Yugoslavian and world art and which is informed by a preference of deconstructionist methods rather than copying and identification. From representational models, the groups artists produce a history of memory that reveals itself in the process of re-creation. The reconstruction of auras relies on the images made possible by modern technology, which works in tandem with history. New combinations of a variety of styles and collages reveal for us the IRWIN aesthetic style. For five years, IRWIN was working on producing a map and history of contemporary art in all Eastern European and former Socialist countries through its East Art Map project, in which an attempt is being made to formulate a history of that art that is an alternative to the authoritarian art history of the West. “A reconstruction of the missing history of contemporary art, art networks, and art conditions in Eastern Europe from the East European perspective. The artistic map of Europe contains different degrees of detail and resolution. Italy, France, and Spain are presented in fine grain, but the Balkan peninsula is little more than a vague outline. England, Germany, and Scandinavia have many features filled in, but to the east of Germany things are blurred. Until recently, cities like Sofia, Odessa, Skopje, and Belgrade had next to no definition. Further to the East, Moscow comes into focus, but this is no compensation for the Baltics, sentenced for the last half-century to blank space.In the West, virtually every move of the artist, the art market, and the art public is documented. But in Eastern Europe, no such system of documentation or communication exists. Instead, we encounter systems that are not only inaccessible to the West, but incongruous from one country to the next. Beside the official art histories there is often a whole series of stories and legends about unofficial, unapproved art and artists”

IRWIN (artist group) — East Art Map - Contemporary Art and Eastern Europe

700,00 DKK

In stock