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New monograph by Cathrine Bublatzky

Oct 22, 2019

Dr. Cathrine Bublatzky published her ethnographic study “Along the Indian Highway,” which is based on a travelling exhibition of Indian contemporary art. Entrenched in the field of global and transcultural studies, the book is part of Routledge series “Visual and Media Histories” edited by HCTS Prof. Monica Juneja.

Dr. Cathrine Bublatzky, assistant professor to the professorship of Visual and Media Anthropology, published the monograph “Along the Indian Highway. An Ethnography of an International Travelling Exhibition.” The book is an ethnographic study of the travelling art exhibition Indian Highway that presented Indian contemporary art in Europe and China between 2008 and 2012, a significant period for the art world that saw the rise and fall of the national exhibition format. It analyses art exhibition as a mobile "object" and promotes the idea of art as a transcultural product by using participant observation, in-depth interviews, and multi-media studies as research method.

Bublatzky´s work encompasses voices of curators, artists, audiences, and art critics spread over different cities, sites, and art institutions to bridge the distance between Europe and India based on vignettes along the Indian Highway. The discussion in the book focuses on power relations, the contested politics of representation, and dissonances and processes of negotiation in the field of global art. It also argues for rethinking analytical categories in anthropology to identify the social role of contemporary art practices in different cultural contexts and also examines urban art and the way national or cultural values are reinterpreted in response to ideas of difference and pluralism.

The book is part of Routledge´s “Visual and Media Histories,” a series edited by the HCTS professor of Global Art History Monica Juneja. The series takes as a starting point notions of the visual, and of vision, as central in producing meanings, maintaining aesthetic values, and relations of power. It calls for closer attention to inter-textual and inter-pictorial relationships through which ever-accruing layers of readings and responses are brought alive. The importance attached here to investigating the historical dimensions of visual practice implies close attention to specific local contexts which intersect and negotiate with the global, and can re-constitute it.


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