Brancusi: An Afterlife
Cristian Nae & Alexandru Polgár (Eds.)
The dangers inherent in the appropriation and instrumentalization of an artist’s work by the state is the focus of visual artist Alexandra Croitoru’s smart, irreverent and ironic examination of the treatment of Brancusi’s life and work in post-Stalinist Romanian culture. Against the backdrop of left-wing movements opposing capitalism and globalisation, Brancusi: An Afterlife began as Croitoru’s doctoral research on Brancusi’s “nationalization” and grew into exhibitions she curated. The illustrated and well-designed softcover publication clearly dissects the role of retrospective influence and the mechanisms of re-contextualization and re-signification of an artist’s identity. In five sections—“From Appropriation to Nationalization,” “Brancusi and Romania,” “Brancusiology and Brancusiologists of National Renown,” “Popular Appropriation,” and “Brancusi as a Character, Between Reality and Fiction”—Croitoru demonstrates how an artist’s appropriation as cultural signifier evolves into both the banal and national myth: through decorative and vernacular appropriations, through kitsch legitimized by museums and the entertainment industry, and in discourses that convey the history of art from a national perspective to promote national branding.
212 pp / 45 b&w and 38 color
Retail Price: $22.00
SALONUL DE PROIECTE ASSOCIATION, BERLIN