is a long term experimental curatorial, scientific and educational research project that investigates hidden territories of the revolutionary period of the 1960s regarded from contemporary artistic and theoretical perspectives. The curatorial and artistic focus lies on “post ideological societies” (in post-soviet, post socialistic, Eastern European, Middle Eastern West and Central Asian as well as North African countries and in a second phase in China and Latin America) and in making a comparative analysis and contextualization of the historical developments in arts culture and society of the 1960s and 70s and their subsequent effects on contemporary socio-political and cultural situations.
The main focus of our project lies upon the still underexposed global cultural shift in the 1960s and its subsequent effects in countries that were skipped out from the historical explorations of that particular revolutionary period. The general perception of 1960s period is still being associated with western culture and with the formal fragmented replications of processes on the “peripheries” and “outskirts”. Our project points at, reiterates, and re-narrates the still hidden geographies and societies of this cultural shift that most recently is getting rediscovered as a main influence for young artists in different localities around the globe.
In the early sixties, a hopeful spirit of modernism had moved into private ateliers in the art scenes of a lot of artscapes that then had be conceived as peripheral or provincial. In the so called Soviet Block, the existential fears from the period of the Stalinist dictate of realism had already elicited initial counter-reactions after 1956 in a reenactment of extreme subjectivism. In the totalitarian and colonial arts-capes of the Arab world and North and Central Africa as well as West and Central Asia new groups and positions that now emerged were joining an international artistic spirit of late modernist universalism and became able to feel accepted again in the international canon with their kinetic objects, light works, and their structural-geometric abstraction. In the second post-war decade, a generation of neo-constructivist artist on both sides of the Iron Curtain and the former colonies had formed a kind of international association.
During these years, the repressive climate was gradually loosened, and this made it possible to deal more freely with artistic means of representation - and also enabled a new approach to aesthetic work. In a way, neo-constructive modernism, the new abstraction, which functioned not only as a sign of the end of an aera, but also as a kind of repression machine: the new modernism was also a substitute for the errors and oversights of as well fordism and socialism and their models of social modernization, criticized mass culture and its everyday objects, placed artistic work in an abstract space of work on the form, and was the vanishing point from the real world of the Cold War. The aera of the neo-avant-gardes left traces around the globe. Yet it is still the one in the centers that has been canonized.
In contrast to the now accepted master narratives and historical canons of our project considers the processes of 1960s not as an eruption of a volcano with its fading away waves generating echoes in the rest of the world but as a certain general socio-cultural, political, economical condition evolving in global context, which determined the development of parallel modernities interrelated with the development of divers sociopolitical and cultural radical processes in every part of the world.