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Lecture by Karin Zitzewitz

Jan 23, 2018

On February 1 at 4pm, Prof. Karin Zitzewtiz, Humboldt Research Fellow at the Heidelberg Centre for Transcultural Studies, gave a talk about “Painting and the Image Condition in Millennial Mumbai”. Her lecture reflected the contemporary Indian art scene and was presented by the Professorship for Global Art History.

In her talk, Prof. Zitzewitz focused on the period from mid 1990s to 2008, when new image forms and the influx of Internet rapidly changed painting in Mumbai. Both, television channels, including MTV and Channel [V], and duplication technologies like Xerox and fax, shaped the practice in the Indian Art Scene. Furthermore, in 2000 the “irrational exuberance” of the dot-com boom landed in Mumbai mere months before its global crash. 

These new image forms nevertheless did not displace the medium of painting’s demise. In contrast, they enhanced a boom market in painting that engaged with the contemporary image condition with photorealistic renderings of mediatic images becoming particularly desirable. Karin Zitzewitz talked about this eruption of multiple technologies of image-making and circulation, which permitted a new internet-facilitated market for art. The lecture took place at Karl Jaspers Centre in room 212.

Karin Zitzewitz is Associate Professor of Art History and Visual Culture at Michigan State University. She was awarded a Humboldt Research Fellowship for Experienced Researchers and is spending the academic year 2017/2018 at the Heidelberg Centre for Transcultural Studies. As part of the fellowship, she will work on her next book, which focuses on the rapid formal and institutional changes in contemporary art in India and Pakistan from 1991 to 2008, or the period from the liberalization of the Indian economy to the global financial crisis.


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  • © Jitish Kallat, When So Many Spectacles Happen I See-Saw, 1996, oil and mixed media on canvas