Artpool card, 1979 (designed by György Galántai)
Artpool card, 1979 (by György Galántai)

Artpool40Active Archives and Art Networks

International Conference of the Artpool Art Research Center

February 20–21, 2020 Museum of Fine Arts, Schickedanz Hall, Budapest


The international conference celebrates the 40th anniversary of the foundation of Artpool and its concurrent relocation to the Central European Research Institute of Art History of the Museum of Fine Arts, Budapest.
It aims to map the cultural-political-historical contexts of Artpool's activity by bringing together scholars and practitioners interested in transnational research on artist archives, progressive curatorial and museological practices, and the historiography of Cold War art scenes and networks.

The conference takes Artpool’s 1979 concept of an “Active Archive” as a starting point to explore its contemporary interpretations and applications, and its similarities with and differences from other artist archives. As Artpool’s founder György Galántai puts it, an active archive “generates the very material to be archived” through calls for participation, cooperation, exchange, and building of non-hierarchical networks, as well as through combining art historical and artistic methodologies of research. An active archive is future-oriented and employs a dynamic approach to history “as an open artwork and as an activist artistic practice”. The main activity of Artpool to this day is conducting non-medium specific research into the role of art in ever-changing social and political contexts.

In this spirit, we invite scholars and practitioners to propose new museological, curatorial, academic, or artistic perspectives and methodologies that allow the consideration of archival practice as a creative and active form of researching art and artistic visions of the future.

The conference is organized by Júlia Klaniczay, Dr. Emese Kürti, and Zsuzsa László from Artpool Art Research Center – Museum of Fine Arts in collaboration with Dr. Judit Bodor (Glasgow School of Art) and Dr. Beáta Hock (Universität Leipzig), and is realized in the framework of the COST Action New Exploratory Phase in Research on East European Cultures of Dissent (NEP4DISSENT) generously supported by the Horizon 2020 Framework Programme of the European Union.

Artpool 40 conference 2020 – all videos [watch on youtube]

February 20, Thursday

09:30–10:00 Registration
10:00–10:10 Opening Remarks

10:10–13:30 / Session 1
Archive as Institution – Questions of Methodology and Institutionalization
Chair: Sven Spieker

Emese Kürti: Artpool in Motion: The Archive’s Path from the Underground to the Museum

Zdenka Badovinac: Self-Historicization – Artists’ Archives in Eastern Europe

Jasna Jakšić – Tihana Puc: Artists’ Networks in the Context of Institutional and Personal Archives – Museum of Contemporary Art, Zagreb

11:30–12:00 Coffee break

Sarah Haylett: Beyond an Archival Impulse: the artist-as-archivist at Tate

Lina Džuverović: Collaborative Actions, Continued Omissions – A Feminist Revisiting of Yugoslav Collectives in the 1970s

Lívia Páldi: Active Archive – Slow Institution (2017–2020)


13:30–14:30 Lunch break

14:30–17:30 / Session 2
Artistic Strategies of (Self-)Documentation and Archiving
Chair: Klara Kemp-Welch

Sven Spieker: Self-Documentation as Artistic Practice in Eastern Europe

Tomas Załuski: The Alternative Official? KwieKulik's Studio of Activities, Documentation and Propagation as a State Financed Performative Archive under Real Socialism

Kaja Kraner: Anti-Archive and Memory Politics in the Work of Walid Raad

15:40–16:00 Coffee break

Daniel Grúň: Discrepancy between History and Self-Historicization: Stano Filko in the 1970s

Katalin Cseh-Varga: The Art of (Self-)Reflection: An Intellectual Journey across György Galántai’s Mind

Karolina Majewska-Güde: Life and After-Life of the Archives: Ewa Partum’s and Valie Export’s Archives


18:15–19:30 Artpool visit
Artpool Művészetkutató Központ / Artpool Art Research Center
1061 Budapest, Liszt Ferenc tér 10. bell: 65, 1st floor

February 21, Friday

09:00–09:30 Registration
09:30–11:15 / Session 3
“Collecting the Future” – Strategies of Self-historicization
Chair: Beáta Hock

Kristine Stiles: Collecting the Future: Kristine Stiles’ Archive at the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Duke University, Methods, Theories, Self-and-Other Historicization, and a Special Focus on East-European Artists

Henar Rivière: Fluxus and the Archive as Agent Provocateur

Mela Dávila Freire: “Constructive Contact between Us”: Other Books and So by Ulises Carrión

David Crowley: Archiving the Infra-Ordinary in Late Socialism


Coffee break: 11:15-11:45

11:45–13:30 / Session 4
Archive as an Artistic Medium / Media of Archiving
Chair: David Crowley

Meghan Forbes: The Art Magazine as Archive: Underground Print Culture in 1980s East Germany

Elisabeth Zimmermann: Ö1 Kunstradio and Its Never Finished Online Archive

Roddy Hunter – Judit Bodor: a user’s guide

Agustina Andreoletti: Shadow Libraries: Distributed Models for the Creation and Circulation of Digital Archives


Lunch break 13:30–14:30

14:30–16:15 / Session 5
Network Theories
Chair: Roddy Hunter

John Held: Harboring Hidden Histories: Mail Art’s Reception in United States Institutional Archives

Katalin Timár: Theorizing Mail Art: Frameworks and Approaches

Klara Kemp-Welch: Networking the Bloc: Critical Reflections on Art Historical Method


Coffee break 16:15–16:45

16:45–17:45 Final discussion

18:00 Visit to Artpool's future venue (Central European Research Institute for Art History)


Agustina Andreoletti
Curator and director at Gemeinde Köln and doctoral candidate at the University of Cologne–a.r.t.e.s. Graduate School for the Humanities Cologne

Zdenka Badovinac
Director of the Moderna Galerija in Ljubljana

Roddy Hunter and Judit Bodor
Judit Bodor is Lecturer in Curatorial Practice at The Glasgow School of Art.
Roddy Hunter is Director of Teaching, School of Art, Design & Architecture University of Huddersfield and Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (SFHEA) and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (FRSA)

David Crowley
Head of the School of Visual Culture, National College of Art and Design, Dublin

Katalin Cseh-Varga
Hertha Firnberg Fellow at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna, and lecturer at the Department of Theatre, Film and Media Studies at the University of Vienna.

Mela Dávila Freire
Independent consultant and researcher collaborating with the Documenta Archive (Kassel), the Lafuente Archive (Santander), and Arts Libris (Barcelona)

Lina Džuverović
Lecturer in Arts Policy and Management at the Department of Film, Media and Cultural Studies, Birkbeck, University of London and independent curator and founding director of Electra, a London-based contemporary arts organization.

Meghan Forbes
Postdoctoral Fellow, Leonard A. Lauder Research Center for Modern Art, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

Daniel Grúň
Assistant Professor at the Department of Art Theory and History, Academy of Fine Arts and Design, Bratislava and researcher of the Július Koller Society.

Péter György
Professor at the Institute of Art Theory and Media Studies and Head of the Film, Media and Cultural Studies Doctoral Program at ELTE, Budapest

Sarah Haylett
Archives and Records Management Researcher of the research project “Reshaping the Collectible: When Artworks Live in the Museum,” at Tate, London

John Held, Jr.
Independent artist based in San Francisco, California

Jasna Jakšić and Tihana Puc
Jasna Jakšić is a curator at Museum of Contemporary Art, Zagreb
Tihana Puc is an independent researcher based in Zagreb

Klara Kemp-Welch
Senior Lecturer in 20th Century Modernism and Head of MA Program at the Courtauld Institute of Art, London.

Kaja Kraner
PhD in Humanist Sciences (AMEU-ISH, Ljubljana), member of the editorial board of ŠUM – Journal for Contemporary Art Criticism and Theory and an independent researcher based in Ljubljana

Emese Kürti
Art historian and researcher at Artpool Art Research Center, Budapest

Karolina Majewska-Güde
Assistant Professor at the Institute of History and Theory of Art, Faculty of Philosophy and Art History at Katholische Privat-Universität Linz

Lívia Páldi
Curator of Visual Arts, Project Arts Centre, Dublin

Henar Rivière
Postdoctoral research fellow Juan de la Cierva at UCLM (Cuenca) and a close collaborator of Archivo Lafuente (Santander).

Sven Spieker
Professor at the Department of Germanic, Slavic, and Semitic Studies, the Department of Art, the Department of Art and Art History, and the Comparative Literature Program at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Founding editor of ARTMargins Print and ARTMargins Online.

Kristine Stiles
France Family Professor of Art, Art History and Visual Studies at Duke University, Durham, North Carolina.

Katalin Timár
Senior curator at the Ludwig Museum Budapest.

Tomasz Załuski
Assistant Professor at the Department of Electronic Media in the Institute of Contemporary Culture at the University of Łódź and at the Department of Art History and Art Theory at the Wladyslaw Strzeminski Academy of Fine Arts in Łódź.

Elisabeth Zimmermann
Producer of the weekly radio art program Radiokunst – Kunstradio ( on the cultural channel of ORF (Austrian National Radio).

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