The Art of Rebellion
Punk Orientalism: The Art of Rebellion explores the spaces and places associated with the former Soviet Union, focusing on the artists and ideas hailing from Central Asia and the Caucasus, which were long perceived as an extension or ?client? states of the USSR. The theme of non-conformity and the punk rejection of state authority is a continuous thread throughout the book, which highlights changing and divided societies and their evolving norms in the post-Soviet period. Inspired by the titular concepts, punk and orientalism, the text functions as a form of bricolage, uniting punk movements and strategies, which can be traced in popular visual culture from the 1970s onwards. The idea of punk is coupled with a critical study of orientalism and its historical association with imperialist assumptions of knowledge concerning the East. Punk Orientalism expands its association with this territory to explore former Soviet possessions in Central Asia and the Caucasus, as well as looking at the USSR?s complex relationship with the Arab world, Iran and Turkey.Thematically organised, Punk Orientalism presents a thoroughly researched and fascinating selection of contemporary art from a complex and multifaceted part of the globe, featuring diverse artists such as Lida Abdul, Babi Badalov, Ergin Çavusoglu, Taus Makhacheva and Erbossyn Meldibekov who have challenged state and academic policies, mapped new territories, and formed new artistic movements. Punk Orientalism examines history as a conduit for revisionist thinking and rebellion, appealing to those readers interested in revolutionary practices in contemporary art. This thought-provoking book highlights breaking free from the entrapment of imperialism and shines a light on one of the most under-researched regions in the contemporary art world.
About this Author
Sara Raza is an award-winning contemporary art curator and writer based in New York City, where she founded the curatorial studio Punk Orientalism, which specialises in global art and visual cultures, mainly from Central and Western Asia and its international diaspora. Currently, Sara is the 2021?2022 awardee of the Red Burns Fellowship by the New York University?s Interactive Telecommunications Programme, and a member of the faculty at the School of Visual Arts for the MA Curatorial Practice Programme. Between 2015?2018, she was the Guggenheim UBS MAP Curator of Middle Eastern and North African art in New York where she built the collection and organised the acclaimed exhibition But a Storm Is Blowing from Paradise, which debuted in the capital in 2016, later travelling to the Galleria d?Arte Moderna in Milan in 2018. Alongside this, Sara has curated numerous other exhibitions for international museums, biennials and festivals, including the Rubin Museum of Art, New York; Mathaf: Arab Museum of Modern Art, Doha, Qatar; the 55th Venice and Tashkent Biennials; and the 3rd Baku Public Art Festival, among others. Sara has also been the Head of Education and Public Programs at YARAT, Baku, Azerbaijan; Founding Curator at Alaan Art Space, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; and Curator of Public Programmes at Tate Modern, London. Sara has written for numerous artist monographs, books, catalogues and publications, and is the West and Central Asia Desk Editor for ArtAsiaPacific magazine. In 2016, she was the recipient of the 11th ArtTable New Leadership Award for Women in the Arts, and in 2017 was honoured by Deutsche Bank and Apollo as one of ?40 under 40? global art specialists. Sara holds a BA (hons) in English Literature and History of Art, and an MA in 20th Century Art History and Theory from Goldsmiths College, University of London. She also pursued studies towards her PhD at the Royal College of Art, London.
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