Kunstuniversität Linz in Wien
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Éva Forgács: Between Point Zero and the Iron Curtain. Art 1945–1948
The lecture outlines global art initiatives in the immediate post-World War II years 1945–1948. This was a unique period because of the strong sense of a fresh beginning that held the promise of a new cultural era of unlimited cooperation between West and East, North and South, on different continents and between countries that had only recently been war enemies.
Artists and art institutions felt responsible for shaping the new culture–and doing so urgently. Some of the initiatives began as soon as the war ended in Eastern European territories, even if hostilities were not entirely over a few miles west of these locations. Important points will be postwar Paris, postwar Latin American art, the initiatives of the CoBrA group (acronym of Copenhagen, Brussels, Amsterdam), and various East-European artistic cultures of these years. The lecture also considers several initiatives from postwar American art’s new beginning, as well as the two competing wartime trends of surrealism and abstraction.
Éva Forgács is an art historian, critic, and curator. Her books include Malevich and Interwar Modernism (Bloomsbury 2022) and The Bauhaus Idea and Bauhaus Politics (CEU Press). Currently she is ifk Senior Fellow.