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Photo: Barbara JanschSusanne Altmann lives and works as an art historian, independent curator and writer in Dresden. She studied art history and philosophy in Dresden and at the New School for Social Research/NYC. Altmann has published widely on art in post-communist countries, public art and contemporary feminist and gender-based art. In 2017 she will be involved in curating the exhibition of Karl-Heinz-Adler at the Kassak Museum in Budapest. Among other advisory boards and juries, she has served on the jury of Leopold Bloom Award in Budapest 2015 and as chair for the Jindřich Chalupecký Award for contemporary Czech art (2008–10).

Hana Buddeus studied Art History and French at the Faculty of Arts, Charles University in Prague. Last year, she defended her dissertation, “Representation without Reproduction? Photography and Performance in Czech Art of the 1970s” at the Academy of Arts, Architecture and Design in Prague. Central to her academic interest is the research of photography in the broader context of art history. She lectures at the Film and Television School of the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague, co-curates the Fotograf Festival and is a member of the editorial board of the Fotograf magazine. Since 2013 she has been employed as the Director of AMU Gallery, currently on maternity leave.

Mikolaj Czerwinski
is a PhD Candidate in the Department of Art History at the University of Illinois at Chicago, focusing on the architectural and design history of Central and Eastern Europe in the 20th century. He questions the role of design in the creation of ethnic and national ideologies. As a design historian he seeks to document different attempts to forge modern design in Eastern Europe and its role in the creation of a modern but distinct cultural identity. His research further concerns the creation of the idea of Eastern Europe following the Second World War and the way in which design practitioners negotiated or rejected this category.

Eva Forgacs is adjunct Professor of Art History at Art Center College of Design in Pasadena. She was co-curator (with N. Perloff) of Monuments of the Future: Designs by El Lissitzky at the Getty Research Institute in 1998. She was awarded an EURIAS fellowship at the Institutfür die Wissenschaftenvom Menschen in Vienna, Her books include The Bauhaus Idea and Bauhaus Politics (1991, CEU Press 1995), the co-edited volume (with T. O. Benson) Between Worlds: A Sourcebook of Central European Avant-Gardes (The MIT Press, 2002), and two volumes of essays. She has widely published essays and reviews in journals, edited volumes, and catalogues.

Daniel Grúň is an art historian, curator and writer. He works as a lecturer at the Academy of Fine Arts and Design in Bratislava. He conducts research in the field of archiving the artists´ prectices in former Eastern Europe as well as their legacy in contemporary arts. As a co-curator he is currently working on international retrospective exhibition presenting the work of Július Koller. In 2010 he won working grant of the Igor Zabel Award for Culture and Theory. He was awarded Fulbright research scholarship, CUNY, Graduate Center, New York in 2012.

Candice M. Hamelin recently completed and defended her dissertation, entitled “Behind Immaterial and Material Divides: East German Photography, 1949-1989,” under the supervision of Professors Matthew Biro and Geoff Eley at the University of Michigan. She is currently living in Berlin, where she has accepted a postdoctoral fellowship for the 2016-2017 academic year at the Freie Universität. At present, she is working on an article that not only investigates how photographers found alternatives to state-sponsored endeavours to circulate their work in the GDR, but also how the East German state and its cultural apparatuses often supported these very same venues.

Marko Ilić recently completed his PhD at the Courtauld Institute of Art in London. His thesis represented the first comprehensive survey of Yugoslavia's Students’ Cultural Centres, and examined how these institutions played host to what came to be known as the ‘New Art Practice’, under the political programme of self-­managing socialism. It further traced how, by providing a platform for an alternative art scene to flourish, these institutions foreshadowed later subcultural developments in Ljubljana and Sarajevo during the 1980s. In April 2013, he participated in Tate Modern’s Global Pop Symposium, and has since given papers at UCL, The Courtauld, and the Graduate School at Regensburg.

Raino Isto is a PhD student at the University of Maryland, College Park, where he works primarily on the monumentality and the construction of memory in the Balkan states during the socialist years. Much of his research has centered on socialist Albania and its significance for a broader political and art historical account of culture in the region.His recent research focuses on theories of ecology and the role of animals in contemporary Chinese art. He has presented his work at conferences across Europe and America, and published essays on both East European and Chinese art.

Beata Jablonská works at the Academy of FineArts and Design in Bratislava, where she lectures on 20th century visual art.She studied the Theory and history of fine arts at Comenius University in Bratislava. Until 2009 she worked as a curator of drawings collections of 20 century at the Slovak National Gallery in Bratislava. She is the author of several studies, interalia: Painting in Concept. Critical research into the conceptual practises in painting after 1960. (Dissertation 2014), Painting in thePostmodern Situation in the synthetic publication Art of the 20th Century (Slovak NationalGallery, 2000); Lies, Dilemmas and Alternatives of a Picture in the Slovak Visual Arts catalogue 1970 – 1985 (Slovak NationalGallery, 2003). She also curated the exhibition and edited the catalogue Eighties: Postmodernism in Slovak Art 1985 – 1992 (Slovak National Gallery, 2009).


Yulia Karpova is a Visiting Lecturer at Central European University and at Budapest Metropolitan University of Applied Sciences. She received her MA in History and Theory of Visual Arts from State Academy of Art and Design in St. Petersburg, Russia, and her PhD in Comparative History from CEU with the dissertation “Designer Socialism: The Aesthetic Turn in Soviet Russia after Stalin.” In May 2014 she co-organized with Tom Cubbin an international conference “(De)Constructing Utopia: Design in Eastern Europe from Thaw to Perestroika” at the University of Sheffield. She recently received a Marie Curie Individual Fellowship for the research on Soviet design of domestic objects in 1953-1991.

Zsuzsa László is a researcher and curator at (since 2009) and completing a PhD in Art Theory at the Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest. She has recently co-curated various projects, including: Art Always has its Consequences, 2008–2010; Recuperating the invisible Past (2010-2012); Regime Change—Incomplete Project, 2012–, Creativity Exercises, 2014–2016. Between 2008–2012, she was lecturer at the Intermedia Department of the Hungarian University of Fine Arts, and between 2005–2007 at the Institute for Art Theory and Media Studies, ELTE, Budapest. Previously she was the assistant curator of Periferic 8, Iasi, 2008; and the program manager of the Studio of Young Artists, Budapest (2006–2008).

Armin Medosch PhD, is a Vienna based artist, curator and scholar working in art and media theory. He is initiator of the Technopolitics working group in Vienna and initiator and maintainer of the cooperative web-space His book under the title New Tendencies – Art at the Threshold of the Information Revolution gets published by MIT Press in June 2016.


Helena Musilová worked as a curator of the collection of photography and architecture in Museum of Fine Arts in Olomouc (1998-2003) and at the National Gallery in Prague as a curator of Czech painting of 20th century (from 2004). Currently she analyses the Collection of Jiří Valoch (more than 3600 items), which was donated to the National Gallery in Prague by the theoretician, curator and collector Jiří Valoch (born 1946). In connection with this research, she deals with the situation of art in the so called normalization period (1970’s and 80’s in Czechoslovakia and Central Europe).

Tomáš Pospiszyl is a Czech art historian, curator and writer based in Prague. He studied at Charles University in Prague and Bard College in New York. He worked as a curator at The National Gallery in Prague (1997-2002), and was a research fellow at The Museum of Modern Art in New York (2000). Since 2003 he teaches Art History at the Film and TV School of the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague and since 2012 at the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague. His publications in English include the anthology Primary Documents; A Sourcebook for Eastern and Central European Art since the 1950’s, which he edited together with Laura Hoptman, (MIT Press, MoMA, 2002), and a contribution to the catalogue International Pop (Walker Art Center, 2015). His exhibition It Never Happens Twice (Performance Re-Enactment in Recent Czech Art) was part of the Off-Biennale in Budapest in 2015.

Alina Șerban is art historian, currently a PhD candidate at National University of Arts, Bucharest. Her research focuses on post-war experimental art and architecture and deals with the different regional constructions of Conceptualism and in the exhibition practices of the 1960s and 1970s. As editor and co-author, she runs a self-publishing platform dedicated to the promotion and distribution of Romanian contemporary art P+4 Publications where she published titles including Ciprian Mureșan: Of Puppets and Humans (2015); and Geta Brătescu: The Studio (co-published with Sternberg Press, Kontakt Collection, 2013) and studio BASAR: Evicting the Ghost - Architectures of Survivals (2010).

Sonja Simonyi is a recent Ph.D. graduate from the Department of Cinema Studies at New York University, where she completed her dissertation titled Framing the Wild East: Celluloid Frontiers in Socialist Eastern European Cinema. She has written on the subjectin the edited book International Frontiers: (Re)Locating the Western and a special issue of Frames Cinema Journal. She recently co-edited a special issue of the journal Studies in Eastern European Cinema that addresses experimental filmmaking in the region in the 1960s and 1970s, and is currently co-editing a volume on this subject for Amsterdam University Press to be released in early 2017.

Tomasz Załuski is art historian and philosopher, assistant professor at the Department of Media nad Audivisual Culture at the University of Lodz and at the Department of Art History and Art Theory at the Wladyslaw Strzeminski Academy of Fine Arts in Łódź. His research interests include modern and contemporary artistic practices and artistic culture in economic, social and political contexts; relations between art, praxeology and biopolitics; configurations of aesthetics, ethics and politics in the socio-cultural project of modernity; contemporary French philosophy (especially that of Jacques Derrida and Jean-Luc Nancy). He is the author of the book: Modernizm artystyczny i powtórzenie. Próba reinterpretacji [Artistic Modernism and Repetition. An Attempt at Reinterpretation] (2008), and the editor of the volumes: Sztuki w przestrzeni transmedialnej [Arts in Transmedial Space] (2010) and Skuteczność sztuki [The Effectiveness of Art] (2014).

Speakers from the Kassák Museum Research Group

Lóránt Bódi is a social scientist and PhD candidate at Atelier – Department of European Social Sciences and Historiography (ELTE, Budapest). He has studied at the University of ELTE and visited ZZF (Potsdam) and EHESS (Paris) as a researcher. He mainly focuses on the politics of memory and the formation of different historical narratives during the post-war period and the Kádár era (1956-1989) in Hungary.

Gábor Dobó holds an MA in Literary History and is a PhD candidate at Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest. He has been a researcher at Kassák Museum since 2014. He has studied at universities in Budapest, Florence and Angers. In his research, he applies the methods of Periodical Studies to the magazines of the Hungarian avantgarde. His doctoral research focuses on the international network of Lajos Kassák's magazine Dokumentum (Document) in 1926-1927. His work explores how an examination of Hungarian intellectual history contributes to the understanding of 20th-century Hungarian art.

Dávid Fehér is Associate Curator at the Museum of Fine Arts, Budapest, in the Department of Art after 1800, and a PhD candidate in the Department of Art History at ELTE University, Budapest. His research focuses on the art history of Hungary and Eastern Europe 1960-1980, especially the reception of photorealism, pop art and conceptual art. His work on photorealism and his survey of the transformations of Pop Art in Hungary and Eastern Europe have been published in the exhibition catalogues East of Eden: Versions of Reality (Ludwig Museum, Budapest) and International Pop (Walker Art Center, Minneapolis), respectively, as well as in major Hungarian journals. He also publishes regularly in the art press.

Sándor Hornyik is an art historian and curator working for the Institute for Art History of the Research Center for Humanities of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences as a senior research fellow. His research concerns the history and theory of avantgarde and neo-avantgarde art as well as the theoretical issues of contemporary art and visual culture. He published a book on the neo-avantgarde reception of modern natural sciences (Avant-Garde Science?, Akadémiai Kiadó, Budapest, 2008), and another one on the intersections of visual studies and contemporary art (Aliens in a Sin City, L’Harmattan, Budapest, 2011). Between 2012 and 2014 he was the chief curator of MODEM (Museum of Modern Art Debrecen) where he curated several exhibitions dealing with the socialist and post-socialist visual cultures.

Emese Kürti is an art historian, art critic and researcher, head of acb ResearchLab in Budapest. She holds a PhD in Film, Media and Contemporary Culture at Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest. Her dissertation -- Experimentalism, Avant-Garde and Social Networks in the Sixties. Dr. László Végh and his Circle -- discusses the political and cultural background in 1958-1966 and suggests a new interpretation for the emerging neo-avantgarde based on experimental music. Her current research focuses on the experimental art of the sixties and seventies, and the poetical aspects of the actionism.

Júlia Perczel is a social scientist, art historian and curator. Her main focus of research is the applicability of social science approaches and network methodology to the understanding of contemporary art phenomena. She completed her MAs in Social Science (Social and Organizational Psychology) and Art History at Eötvös Loránd University (Budapest) and at Tilburg University (Tilburg). Between 2013-2015 she conducted research investigating the patterns of networking and functional mechanism of the contemporary art field of Hungary. As a curator she gained professional experience at the Württembergischer Kunstverein Stuttgart and participated in the 1st OFF-Biennale Budapest. Currently, besides being part of the Kassák Museum Research Group, she is working on her PhD at Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest.

Katalin Székely, art historian and curator of the Ludwig Museum – Museum of Contemporary Art between 2008 and 2013, has been a PhD candidate in the Doctoral Program in Film, Media and Contemporary Culture at Eötvös Loránd University since 2013. Her field of research includes new media practices in the neo-avantgarde in Hungary and East Central Europe, and institutional critique in the CEE region from the early 60s to the present. Since 2014, she has been a member of the curatorial team of the OFF-Biennale Budapest. Since November 2015 she is a Program Officer at the Open Society Archives, Budapest.

Merse Pál Szeredi holds an MA in Art History, is a PhD student at Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest and a researcher at the Kassák Museum. He has studied at universities in Budapest and Berlin, and completed internships at the Berlinische Galerie, the Hungarian National Gallery and the Hungarian National Museum. His research focuses on the international networks of the early avantgarde, and his PhD studies the history and local reception of Hungarian avantgarde artists in Viennese exile in the first half of the 1920s.

Daniel Véri is an art historian and PhD candidate at Eötvös Loránd University (ELTE), Budapest, where he will defend his dissertation on János Major, a major Jewish figure of 1960s–70s Hungarian art, in 2016. He holds MA degrees in Art History (ELTE, 2009) and History (Central European University, 2010). His research interests include 1960s–1970s Hungarian and Central European art, neo-avantgarde art, Holocaust and the arts, and the cultural history of the Tiszaeszlár blood libel. Recently, he has been the curator of two exhibitions: Holocaust and the Arts: Hungarian Stories (1945–1989) at the Hungarian Institute in Paris in 2014 and “Leading the Dead” – The World of János Major at the Hungarian University of Fine Arts in 2013 (with a bilingual catalogue under the same title).

Roundtable Participants

Maja and Reuben Fowkes are art historians and curators who work out of Budapest and London. They are founders of the Translocal Institute for Contemporary Art, a centre for transnational research into East European art and ecology based in Budapest that operates across the disciplinary boundaries of art history, contemporary art and ecological thought. Maja has a PhD from University College London, and Reuben’s PhD is from Essex University. Recent publications include Maja Fowkes’s The Green Bloc: Neo-Avant-garde Art and Ecology under Socialism (CEU Press, 2015) and River Ecologies: Contemporary Art and Environmental Humanities on the Danube (Translocal Institute, 2015). Reuben Fowkes is a member of the editorial board of the journal Third Text. Their curatorial projects include the Experimental Reading Room (2014-6), the River School (2013-15), as well as the exhibitions Revolutionary Trilogy (2006-9), Loophole to Happiness (2011) and Walking without Footprints (2015-6).

Klara Kemp-Welch was educated at University College London and the School of Slavonic and East European Studies (BA French and Art History, 1999; MA Russian and East European Literature and Culture, 2001; PhD History of Art, 2008). Her doctorate on East-Central European Conceptualism was supervised by Professor Briony Fer. Before joining The Courtauld as Leverhulme Early Career Fellow in 2009, she lectured at University College London, the University of the Arts London (Camberwell), and the University of York. While working on her current research project, Networking the Bloc. International Relations and Experimental Art in Eastern Europe, she has benefited from an AHRC Early Career Fellowship and an Igor Zabel Working Grant.

Zsolt Petrányi is a prominent curator and art historian based in Budapest. He worked for Kunsthalle Budapest, eventually becoming Chief Curator and curating numerous international exhibitions. In 2001, he became Artistic Director of the Institute of Contemporary Arts, Dunaújváros. He curated the Hungarian Pavilion at the Venice Biennale, realizing the controversial project The Body of Nefertiti by the group Little Warsaw, and later served as its Commissioner. He served as Director of Kunsthalle Budapest for five years. He is Head of Contemporary Art at the Hungarian National Gallery, and he heads the Department of Art Management at the International Business School in Budapest.

Edit Sasvári is an art historian and has been Director of the Kassák Museum in Budapest since 2010. She has degrees in Hungarian Language and Literature and History from Janus Pannonius University, Pécs (1985) and in History of Art from Eötvös Loránd University, Budapest (1996). She studied museum curatorial studies in the Institut für Kulturwissenschaft, Vienna (1994-96). In 2016, she will complete her PhD in the Interdisciplinary Doctoral School of the Department of Modern History, University of Pécs. The topic of her dissertation is art and cultural policy in the 1960s. She has been working in the museum field since 1988, and her main areas of research are historical modernism, the avantgarde, and art-related cultural policy in the 1960s and 1970s.Since autumn 2014, she has led a research group at the Kassák Museum. The group, whose members are predominantly young researchers, aims to carry out a comprehensive study of Hungarian visual art in the 1960s and 1970s.




Susanne Altmann, Hana Buddeus, Mikolaj Czerwinski, Eva Forgacs, Daniel Grúň, Candice M. Hamelin, Marko Ilić, Raino Isto, Beata Jablonska, Yulia Karpova,Zsuzsa László, Armin Medosch, Helena Musilová, Tomáš Pospiszyl, Alina Șerban, Sonja Simonyi, Tomasz Załuski

Speakers from the Kassák Museum Research Group

Lóránt Bódi, Gábor Dobó, Dávid Fehér, Emese Kürti, Sándor Hornyik, Júlia Perczel,Katalin Székely, Merse Pál Szeredi, Daniel Véri

Roundtable Participantd

aja and Reuben Fowkes, Klara Kemp-Welch, Zsolt Pétranyi, Edit Sasvári


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