The Spring 2008 issue begins with Marta Kuzma’s exploration of sexual liberation movements in the 1960s in Scandinavia and the United States. Her reflections on the contradictory outcomes of these initiatives, within both cultural and social contexts, open onto a broader discussion in the rest of the journal about the legacy of the revolutionary politics of the late 1960s and 70s.
Gerard Byrne’s reworkings of 1960s utopian visions and Lutz Bacher and Hans-Peter Feldmann’s ironic and humanist appropriations of extant imagery from that time offer distinct takes on what our relationship to that period and its political project is or perhaps should be. Along similar lines, Annie Fletcher’s discussion of recent curatorial approaches to feminist art practice, Stephan Pascher’s look at Michael Asher’s Münster caravan project and David Bussel’s reconsideration of Öyvind Fahlström’s 1966 Mao-Hope March show different possible ways of relating artworks to both their specific histories, often political, and today’s circumstances.
Elsewhere in the issue, the effects of history are considered by Walead Beshty in relation to the advent of the readymade. Beshty characterises this history as that of a trap from which several artists, including Paul McCarthy and Jason Rhoades, have attempted to escape. Apparently similar at first glance, Bjarne Melgaard’s work, thanks to its distinct sensibility and intensity, appears in this issue as both a complement and a point of contrast.
Afterall journal is co-published by Central Saint Martins College of Art & Design, London and the School of Art at the California Institute of the Arts, Los Angeles, in association with MuHKA, Antwerp.
Afterall can be purchased in bookshops across the UK, Europe and America. Issue 18 will be published in June 2008.
For more information on Afterall or to subscribe, visit http://www.afterall.org