A Global Art & Visual Cultures Curatorial Studio Founded by Sara Raza
Punk Orientalism: The Art of Rebellion
Author Sara Raza
Available now via Black Dog Press London as of 25 October 2022.
“Raza plots a unique, artist-led global punk narrative for the 21st century, taking British punk aesthetics as a ‘method’ through which to chart a fascinating post- Soviet and post-colonial art history. It is a fresh and timely book, impressive in scope and bold in its vision”
Catherine Wood, Director of Programme, Tate Modern
“With her acute visual sense and gift as a storyteller, Sara Raza illuminates an under appreciated part of the world from an art historical perspective: a rich and delicious stew”
Richard Armstrong, Director of the Solomon R Guggenheim Museum and Foundation
“Like oil and water, this book is a confluence on the important art historical legacy of Soviet Orientalism, zigzagging between past, present, and an uncertain future. Sara Raza offers
a fresh perspective on the global.”
Viktor Misiano, Contemporary Art Theorist and Curator, Founder and Editor in Chief of Moscow Art Magazine
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 thoughtprovoking 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.
Punk Orientalism is a global art and visual cultures curatorial studio in New York, founded by award winning international curator and writer Sara Raza in 2019.
With a focus on providing consultancy and strategy on global art, education, exhibitions, public programs and publishing the studio produces original content and explores ideas around non-conformity and resistance that are analogous to “Punk” movements, coupled with a fresh analysis into the symptoms of orientalism. The Studio collaborates with independent artists, architects, designers and technologists to create innovative projects as well as working with global higher education, ministries of culture, museums and non-profit art centers.
This unique platform provides critical legitimacy through contemporary art, curatorial knowledge and education, by way of contributing to a wider understanding of international visual cultural dynamics, and serving as an important bridge between the US, Asia, the Middle East and Europe.
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