This fascinating publication explores the radical story of contemporary art in Central Asia since the collapse of the Soviet Union. In 1991 these republics were granted their independence following almost 75 years of Soviet rule. What ensued was the chaotic emergence of various political, religious and ethnic groups vying for power. At the same time a new generation of contemporary artists were emerging from art schools into this changing and divided society.
Punk Orientalism examines this cohort of artists and their creation of art that challenged the Soviet style dogmas that dominated arts academia in Central Asia. In critiquing societal hypocrisy this formed a movement that contributed to the evolution of a Central Asian contemporary art scene. Through a mixture of interviews and essays this book aims to provide both an introduction and comprehensive survey of one of the most under-researched regions in the contemporary art world, yet one that remains a truly emerging market positioned at the intersection of Asia’s social, cultural and economic development and once formed part of the thriving Silk Road. Focussing on art from Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Afghanistan it features a breadth of important artists in what will be the comprehensive publication on the subject.
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Sara Raza: Sara Raza is an independent curator, writer and a co-editor of "ArtAsiaPacific" magazine She currently works as an associate curator at Maraya Art Centre, Sharjah and the Artist Pension Trust.
Melissa Chiu: Dr. Melissa Chiu is Director of the Asia Society Museum in New York and Senior Vice President for Global Arts and Cultural Programs for the Society's 11 centers and affiliates in the United States and Asia.
Yuliya Sorokina: Yuliya Sorokina is an artist, curator, lecturer and writer based in Almaty, Kazakhstan.
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