Conflict: Perspectives, Positions, Realities in Central European Art

An exhibition exploring the relationship between aesthetic strategies and the historical, political, and cultural contexts of the region


Fields of Knowledge
  • Aesthetics / Media
  • Artistic legacies
  • Curatorial practice
  • Memory

Organizing Institutions

Slought, Le Musée d'art moderne de Saint-Etienne


Lorand Hegyi


Philadelphia Exhibitions Initiative, a program of The Pew Charitable Trusts

Opens to public



4017 Walnut St
Philadelphia, PA 19104


50% Formal - 50% Informal

Slought is pleased to present "Conflict: Perspectives, Positions, Realities in Central European Art," from November 4-December 31, 2005. This exhibition features the work of artists Marina Abramovic, Braco Dimitrijevic, Nebojsa Seric Soba, Michael Milunovic, Danica Dakic, Maya Bajevic, László Révész, Pincehelyi Sándor, Sejla Kameric, Eric Binder, and Denica Lehocka, and has been curated by Lorand Hegyi, Director of Le Musée d'art moderne de Saint-Etienne, France. The curator and select participating artists will be present for the public reception on Friday, November 4th, 2005 from 6:30-8:30pm.

In spite of the growing interest in long forgotten and neglected parts of Europe, the contemporary culture of Central Europe remains basically unknown and to a certain degree misunderstood. Entrenched prejudices, a lack of information, and somewhat naïve illusions about the historical and political realities, as well as about the radical political changes currently taking place in the region, have until now blocked an accurate and authentic reading of the cultures of the Central European countries. This exhibition contributes to the long process of integration and understanding of contemporary art made by artists who were raised in Central Europe but have, in different ways, adopted a nomadic lifestyle whose artistic practice reconnects with their native country, but also with their new countries of residence. Our exhibition aspires to avoid any false homogenization or sense of universality, and in turn seeks to reflect and accept the historically inflected diversity which makes these particular works worthy of our renewed attention. We can find heterogeneity in the language and pluralism of the aesthetic strategies featured in this exhibition, which in turn reflects the different historical, political, and cultural contexts of the region.

Slought and The French Institute for Culture and Technology at the University of Pennsylvania are also pleased to present a lecture by Lorand Hegyi on Thursday, February 17, 2005 from 6:30-8:00pm in Bodek Lounge in Houston Hall at the University of Pennsylvania. His talk, entitled "Museum Politics in France and the New European Art Scene," will inform and complement the subsequent exhibition.

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Lorand Hegyi (born in Hungary; currently resides in France) is one of the foremost European curators and art historians. He is currently the director of Le Musée d'art moderne de Saint-Etienne. He is the former director of the Museum Moderner Kunst / Ludwig Foundation, Vienna, and founding director of the new Centre Arte Contemporanea in Naples. Hegyi is a respected critic specializing in modern and contemporary art from Central and East Europe (such as Ilya Kabakov, Marina Abramovic, Braco Dimitrijevic, Hermann Nitsch, Franz West, and Roman Opalka), and the author of numerous publications on contemporary art and cultural criticism.

His publications include New Sensibility - Change of Paradigm in Contemporary Art (Budapest, 1993), Roman Opalka's Places (Prestel, 2000), and The Courage to Be Alone - Re-inventing of Narratives in Contemporary Art (Charta, 2004). Hegyi was co-curator of the Venice Biennial in 1993; artistic director of the Sculpture Triennial of Stuttgart in 1995; and curator of the Valencia Biennial 2003. He has previously lectured at Slought as part of the 2005 Hermann Nitsch retrospective exhibition, and on "Politics in France and the New European Art Scene".

Participating Artists

Marina Abramovic (Montenegro/United States)
Braco Dimitrijevic (Bosnia/France)
Nebojsa Seric Soba (Bosnia/United States)
Michael Milunovic (Serbia/France)
Danica Dakic (Bosnia/Germany)
Maya Bajevic (Bosnia/France)
László Révész (Hungary/United States)
Pincehelyi Sándor (Hungary)
Eric Binder (Slovakia)
Denica Lehocka (Slovakia)
Sejla Kameric (Bosnia)

East & East: Divergent Readings

in Culture and Politics

Slought is pleased to announce "East & East: Divergent Readings in Culture and Politics," an evening symposium with Lorand Hegyi and Nebojsa Seric Soba (lives in New York and Sarajevo) on Thursday, November 3, 2005 from 6:30-8:00pm.

There is always an "Eastern version" and a "Western version" to the same story, as well as different versions of the same story inside the "East". This evening symposium will feature presentations by artists whose work is indicative of the divergent tendencies and heterogenity of Central and East European cultural and political systems.