1st Edition

Art and Activism in the Age of Systemic Crisis Aesthetic Resilience

Edited By Eliza Steinbock, Bram Ieven, Marijke de Valck Copyright 2021
    224 Pages 16 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    224 Pages 16 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This book examines how renewed forms of artistic activism were developed in the wake of the neoliberal repression since the 1980s.

    The volume shows the diverse ways in which artists have sought to confront systemic crises around the globe, searching for new and enduring forms of building communities and reimagining the political horizon. The authors engage in a dialogue with these artistic efforts and their histories – in particular the earlier artistic activism that was developed during the civil rights era in the 1960s and 70s – providing valuable historical insight and new conceptual reflection on the future of aesthetic resilience.

    This book will be of interest to scholars in contemporary art, history of art, film and literary studies, protest movements, and social movements.

    Introduction: Taking Aesthetics from Resistance to Resilience

    Bram Ieven, Eliza Steinbock, and Marijke de Valck

     Part 1. Resilience: Searching for New Weapons While Fleeing

    1. Resilience Thinking, Storytelling and Aesthetic Resilience

    Marijke de Valck

    2. But does it Work in Theory? Androcentric Blind Spots and Omissions

    Hilary Robinson

    3. Learning from Documenta: Aesthetic Resilience and the Politics of Institutionalized Art

    Bram Ieven

    4. Blackout: The Necropolitics of Extraction

    T.J. Demos

    5. Movement of Movements: Resilient Strategies in the ‘Global South’

    Kitty Zijlmans

    Part 2. Global Conjunctions of Aesthetic Resilience

    6. Of Tricksters and Zombies: Re-imagining Outsideness in Contemporary Russian Activist Art

    Ksenia Robbe

    7. An Alloy Made from Art and Activism, in North Macedonia

    Jon Blackwood

    8. Drones and Streets: On the Image Composition of the Tahrir and Gezi Occupations

    Begüm Özden Fırat

    9. The Resilient City: When Social Activism meets Media Arts in Hong Kong

    Isaac Leung

    10. Art-activism in Decolonising a South African University Space

    Zethu Matebeni

    Part 3. Artistic Practices of Embodied Resilience

    11. Feminist and Anti-Racist Graffiti: Disrupting Public Space in the 1970s in Britain

    Na`ama Klorman-Eraqi

    12. The Black Radical: Fungibility, Activism, and Portraiture in These Times

    Syrus Marcus Ware

    13. Practicing Aesthetic Resilience through Collaboration

    Keri Watson

    14. Embodied Narratives: Art, Corporeality, and Creative Processes

    Ana Cristina Bohrer Gilbert


    Eliza Steinbock is Assistant Professor of Cultural Analysis at Leiden University’s Centre for the Arts in Society.

    Bram Ieven is Assistant Professor in Modern Dutch Literature and Culture at Leiden University’s Centre for Arts in Society.

    Marijke de Valck is Associate Professor of Media Studies at Utrecht University.