This book discusses the active relationship among the mechanics of memory, visual practices, and historical narratives.
Reflection on memory and its ties with historical narratives cannot be separated from reflection on the visual and the image as its points of reference which function in time. This volume addresses precisely that temporal aspect of the image, without reducing it to a neutral trace of the past, a mnemotechnical support of memory. As a commemorative device, the image fixes, structures, and crystalizes memory, turning the view of the past into myth. It may, however, also stimulate, transform, and update memory, functioning as a matrix of interpretation and understanding the past. The book questions whether the functioning of the visual matrices of memory can be related to a particular historical and geographical scope, that is, to Central and Eastern Europe, and whether it is possible to find their origin and decide if they are just local and regional or perhaps also Western European and universal. It focuses on the artistic reflection on time and history, in the reconstructions of memory due to change of frontiers and political regimes, as well as endeavours to impose some specific political structure on territories which were complex and mixed in terms of national identity, religion and social composition.
The volume is ideal for students and scholars of memory studies, history and visual studies.
Table of Contents
Introduction Part 1: Forms of Memory and Oblivion 1. Dis-Remembered and Mis-Remembered: A Confrontation with Failures of Cultural Memory 2. Matejko. How Did He Do It? 3. The Devotional Image as a Medium of Memory: The Case of the Painting of the Divine Mercy by Eugeniusz Kazimirowski 4. Images in cito, in situ, in extremis: visual testimonies from the "Holocaust by bullets" 5. The Stratified Image. Medium, Construction and Memory in Frank Stella’s Polish Villages 6. Against Illusion. Kuno Raeber’s Thoughts on the Power of Material and the Art of Karl Rössing 7. The Past, Memory and Oblivion 8. A Leap. Operations of Memory Between Sketch and Picture in Piotr Potworowski’s Painting Process 9. Smiling in Auschwitz. Instagram Selfies and Historical Representation at the Auschwitz-Birkenau Memorial and Museum 10. Image World, Memory Space: Photographic Spectatorship as a Mode of Remembrance Part 2: Memory and Identity 11. The Memorial Topography of the Holodomor Between Cumulative and Cultural Trauma: A Genealogical Approach 12. Building the Finnish National Mythos. Photographs from the Russo-Finnish Winter War of 1939–1940 and their post-war use 13. Archived and Mediated: Trauma and ‘Sense Memory’ in Son of Saul, Warsaw Uprising and Regina 14. Memory, History, Image, Forgetting: Obrona Warszawy (‘The Defence of Warsaw’) by Zygmunt Zaremba and Teresa Żarnower 15. Pictures and History. Art Exhibitions as a Tool for the Validation of Communist Authority in Poland 16. Hungary in Flames ‒ Photographic, Cinematic, and Literary Memories of the Hungarian Revolution of 1956, and Its Impact on the History of Ideas 17. Pictures for the Fathers: Baselitz’s Heldenbilder as Anti-Images of the Socialist and Fascist Body 18. The Everyday in the GDR in Individual, Cultural and Political Memory 19. Between Memory and Myth: The Images of Joseph Stalin in New Russian Media
Michal Haake is Professor and art historian at the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan, Poland. His research interests focus on history of European painting from medieval to contemporary art and art history methodology. His publications include Figuralizm Aleksandra Gierymskiego (Aleksander Gierymski’s Figuralism) (2015) and Obraz jako obiektteoretyczny (Image as the Theoretical Object) (as co-editor, 2020).
Piotr Juszkiewicz is an art historian and a professor at the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan, Poland. His publications include From the Bliss of Historiography to the "Game of Nothing". Polish Art Criticism of the of the Post-Stalinist "Thaw" (2005) and The Shadow of Modernism (2013).