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Title: In the shadows of contemporary Palestinian art
Authors: Anani, Yazid
Issue Date: Oct-2013
Publisher: IEEE Computer Society
Abstract: The ones who can call themselves contemporary are only those who do not allow themselves to be blinded by the lights of the century, and so manage to get a glimpse of the shadows in those lights, of their intimate obscurity.” Giorgio Agamben With the death of the notion of nationalism and the decay in the belief in democracy through parliamentary and political representation; and with the calls for reform of the tainted nationalist Arab regimes amidst the recent disconcerting upheavals in the Arab world, Palestinians strive to build their national state and shape its political and cultural identity. This essay investigates how contemporary art practices have dealt with the political shift from the liberation movement to the post-Oslo schizophrenic reality. It investigates “the political” in art practices between a persisting Israeli colonialism, on one hand, and a neoliberal postcolonial state-building project on the other. Nonetheless, the text will not explain the historical shifts in forms, styles, markets, aesthetics and finances; rather it will suggest some rough divisions that help to categories the “the political” in contemporary art practices within the author’s familiar knowledge and networks. These abstract divisions do not suggest that artists are confined to only one of these categories in their practices rather than moving between them within the history of their art production
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