Central & Eastern Europe

Breaking Down Binaries, Feeling Contradictions: Thoughts on Some of the Conundrums Concerning Art’s Ecologies

Sarah Lookofsky, former Associate Director of the International program at MoMA, rumintes on the presentations and conversations held on Day One of the 2022 C-MAP seminar. Lookofsky calls out the contradictions of art’s embeddedness with various ecologies, rehearsing her own writing-thinking as produced by a “dumpy dialectic.”

Working with Peripheries: Workshop for the Restoration of Unfelt Feelings

In this essay, Māra Traumane guides readers through the diverse, interdisciplinary practice of the Riga-based collective Workshop for the Restoration of Unfelt Feelings (NSRD), which operated from the end of the 1970s until 1989. NSRD was involved in the avant-garde music scene as well as in architecture, and their activities ranged from concerts and the production of record albums to performances, writing, and video art.

Pulling Meaning Out of Matter: Reformations of Ukrainian Cultural Heritage

This essay highlights the reconstruction of memory through material culture in Ukrainian museums since the 1990s. Within the context of the Bohdan and Varvara Khanenko National Museum of Arts, the Ivan Honchar Museum, and the Maidan Museum—all of which are in Kyiv, Ukraine’s capital—cultural workers have responded to politically salient events, including Ukrainian independence, the Maidan revolution, and the current war.

Decolonization and Disentanglement in Ukrainian Art

In this text focused on how postcolonial and decolonial processes are reflected in contemporary Ukrainian culture, art historian Svitlana Biedarieva examines methods of decolonizing Ukrainian cultural discourse through the lens of works by contemporary Ukrainian artists—specifically those addressing complex aspects of identity conflicts actualized by Russia’s ongoing war of aggression against Ukraine.

Screening Program: Notes from the Ground

The program showcases moving image works by contemporary artists from Ukraine. Created between the Maidan revolution, which was followed by Crimean annexation and occupation of Donbas in 2014—and the full-scale Russian invasion launched on February 24 of this year—the works in the program take the viewer through the country’s urgencies and contradictions, the streets and fringes of its cities, and the experiences of its inhabitants.