International Conference on Július Koller
Dates: 23-24 April 2009
Place: Slovak National Gallery, Bratislava, Slovakia
Organized by: The Július Koller Society in collaboration with Slovak National Gallery
In its stringency, obsession and peculiarity, the oeuvre of Július Koller is one of the most idiosyncratic and consistent in European art since the 1960s. Yet Koller is not only a seminal figure in the history of the neo- and post-avant-garde; his work has long been a critical inspiration for artists and intellec- tuals. In the most recent past, Koller’s concepts of the Anti-Happening, the Anti-Picture, the Universal-cultural Futurological Operation (U.F.O.), his actions, objects, texts and the enormous referential archive he built up, have attracted growing interest on the part of a broader art public, and his works have found their way into major collections and museums all over Europe and beyond. This first international conference on the oeuvre of Július Koller aims to discover new methodological and theoretical prospects for interpreting and presenting the artist‘s practice, the vast extent, comprehensive approach and conceptual rigour of which is becoming increasingly evident. This and the topicality of Koller’s artistic method – his strategy of using real objects, the real world, everyday life as a given program for an aesthetic operation and an endless aesthetic displacement intended to put an end to aesthetics – are subjects of analysis and debate between local and international scholars. The conference provides new opportunities to meet and hear from Koller’s most important and influential contemporaries as well as younger artists from both Eastern and Western Europe, thus enabling a reappraisal of the influence of Koller’s work on post- conceptual tendencies in contemporary art.