Artpool40Active Archives and Art Networks

International Conference of the Artpool Art Research Center

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

Agustina Andreoletti | Zdenka Badovinac | David Crowley | Katalin Cseh-Varga | Mela Dávila Freire | Lina Džuverović | Meghan Forbes | Daniel Grúň | Sarah Haylett | John Held | Roddy HunterJudit Bodor | Jasna JakšićTihana Puc | Klara Kemp-Welch | Kaja Kraner | Emese Kürti | Karolina Majewska-Güde | Lívia Páldi | Henar Rivière | Sven Spieker | Kristine Stiles | Katalin Timár | Tomasz Załuski | Elisabeth Zimmermann

Klara Kemp-Welch [Biography]

Snapshot from video recording of lecture by Klara Kemp-Welch

Networking the Bloc: Critical Reflections on Art Historical Method


This paper seeks to elucidate the methodological challenges of studying international artists’ networks, with attention to the specificities of the late Cold War context. My focus will be on the questions I confronted while working with living artists, personal and institutional archives while researching and writing the book Networking the Bloc: Experimental Art in Eastern Europe 1965– 1981 (published in 2018). Looking back at the project, I discuss how its working structure evolved over the course of ten years, and how its final shape related to my research questions and methodology, considering the advantages and limitations of the book’s approach. The main aim of the paper is to explore Networking the Bloc in relation to the question of “grounded theory” and recent developments in art historical methodology more broadly.