Polish art historian to give lecture

Event: Guest Lecture by Katarzyna Cytlak, Ph.D., Universidad Nacional de San Martín, Buenos, Aires, Argentina

Date: February 26, 2019 (Tuesday)

Time: 1:15 p.m. to 2:15 p.m.

Location: Hodgdon IRC 9

Title of Lecture: Blurring of National and Cultural Boundaries: Polish Performance Artists in Latin America, 1970-1980

Dr. Katarzyna Cytlak explores the issue of American art’s cultural translations. Joseph Beuys’s performance I Like America and America Likes Me (Coyote) that took place at René Block Gallery in New York in May 1974 serves to problematize the character of transatlantic cultural exchanges and introduce the theoretical frame of decolonial, transnational, and horizontal approaches to art history. The analysis of performance and conceptual art—two artistic genres conceptualized by leading American artists such as Alan Kaprow and Joseph Kosuth—attempts to understand how American art and American categories were perceived and discussed in other, non-Western cultural contexts. Could the transatlantic artistic dialogue with American artists be considered non-hierarchical, or a repetition of the schema of power relations with colonizing Europe? How does one deal with artistic production that transcends national, regional, and cultural boundaries? Romuald Kutera’s HERE – Interpretation, HERE – Reinterpretation (1976), a photographic performance that consisted of walking on the poster A Que Punto Sei? / Where Are You Standing? (1976) by the collective International Local (Sarah Charlesworth, Joseph Kosuth, and Anthony McCall), illustrates how the Polish artist symbolically tried to define his own ‘social location’ and artistic position within the contemporary art world. The question of bicultural identity, as well as social and political agency in the globalizing art world by the end of the 1970s, is examined through Marcos Kurtycz, the Polish/Mexican artist who oscillated between the cultures of his homeland and new Latin American refuge, highlighting the similarities between two remote cultural contexts seemingly incomparable at first sight.


Katarzyna Cytlak received her Ph.D. from the University Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne, France in 2012. A Polish art historian based in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Cytlak was a Postdoctoral Fellow at the CONICET – National Scientific and Technical Research Council in Argentina from 2015 to 2017. In addition, she is a grantee of the University Paris 4 Sorbonne (Paris), the Terra Foundation for American Art (Chicago, Paris), and the Institut National d’Histoire de l’Art (Paris). In 2018 and 2019, she participated in the CAA-Getty International Program. Her research focuses on Central European and Latin American artistic creations in the second half of the twentieth century. She studies conceptual art, radical and utopian architecture, socially engaged art, and art theory in relation to post-socialist countries from a transmodern and transnational perspective. Selected publications include articles in Umění/Art, Eadem Utraque Europa, Third Text, and the RIHA Journal. Currently, Cytalk is a Researcher and Professor at the Center for Slavic and Chinese Studies at Universidad Nacional de San Martín in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Event Contact: Pearlie Rose S. Baluyut, Ph.D., SUNY Department of Art, PearlieRose.Baluyut@oneonta.edu


Poster Photo Credit: Romuald Kutera; HERE – Interpretation, HERE – Reinterpretation, 1976, series of 12 photographs, black and white, Archives of Romuald Kutera, Wroclaw, Poland. Courtesy of Romuald Kutera.


Mette Harder publishes article

Mette Harder (History) has contributed the article “Robbers, Muddlers, Bastards and Bankrupts?”: A Collective Look at the Thermidorians” to the H-France Salon “Becoming Revolutionaries: Papers in Honor of Timothy Tackett.”

From the introduction to the volume, which honours the work of Timothy Tackett, professor emeritus at the University of California, Irvine and specialist in the history of the French Revolution: “The essays in this volume (…) give a rich picture of his legacy and the continuing impact of [Tackett’s] ongoing work. (…) Drawing on the best of the Annales approach, he has consistently emphasized the need to place the choices of individuals in a larger social context. (…) Yet at the heart of Tackett’s work is the question—not so much “why,” but how historical actors make choices that in their aggregate make revolutions, civil wars, social advances and episodes of violence.” Harder’s article suggests a prosopographical approach in the tradition of Tackett and Lewis Namier to investigating French revolutionaries’ various, and not always strictly political, motivations for becoming reactionaries after Robespierre’s fall.