Graduation Year

2005

Document Type

Thesis

Degree

M.F.A.

Degree Granting Department

Art

Major Professor

Dr. Bradley J. Nickels.

Keywords

Romania, Dracula, Exhibition practices, Post-communist condition, Archive

Abstract

The focus of this research study is on major art works produced during the nineteen-nineties by the Romanian collective subREAL, composed of Calin Dan and Josif Kiraly. The thesis is an alternative to the literal-minded and politically biased Western view typified in two major exhibitions of art from Eastern Europe: Beyond Belief: Contemporary Art from East Central Europe (Chicago, 1995) and After the Wall: Art and Culture in Post-Communist Europe (Sweden, 1999). Both exhibitions presented Post-Communist nations as a monolithic bloc, in which art was primarily a passive reflection of political and social events. It will be demonstrated that such exhibitions had consciously promoted this polarizing Western interpretation of the former socialist cultures of Eastern Europe. By contrast, the argument presented here is that subREAL did not merely transmit information and facts from remote lands, but rather explored satire as the way to engage the world around them.

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