Art Strike Conference, Alytus, June 27th - 29th, 2008 Print
Written by Redas Diržys   

The conference is held to provide the international intellectual support for the initiative to held striking campaign towards structures of “serious culture” in (it seems to be) fully colonialized Eastern European milieu. Particular case of the critique is the official celebration of Vilnius one year appointment to be European Cultural Capital in the year 2009 and the process of global biennalization of the art world. Also it coincides with the official celebration of 1000 year anniversary of the first time mentioning worldwide of Lithuania’s name in the Qedlinburgian annals by Fabricius due to the event that local barbarians decapitated bishop Bruno (Sanctus Boniface) – what presumably happen in the location where Alytus town is now …The last we would like to treat as a fact of critical approach towards the “serious culture” and colonization approaches. 


“Serious culture” – the term is used in the sense of it usage by Henry Flynt in early 60-ies - academic and conventionalized cultural forms based on competition and not able to exist without additional support by the State and/or economic structures and their continuous brainwashing (PR-paid theory-history-education). Shortly – business of making a career. Biennials (triennials or whatsoever -ials) I treat as the dominating form of the dissemination of “serious culture” in the field of visual arts and it is colonialist from the very beginning of the structure. It is continuous reappearing form of the organization (curatorial approach + star production + local piquant specialties) which is linked with the existing forms of fundraising …and finalizing with absolutely fake and impotent formulations of the goals – you can take whatever formulations of even the best biennials and the detachment from reality is evident if it is not openly stupid. But nobody care about that because usually nobody read it anymore… even artists. Essential part of the dissemination of the “serious culture” is the format of the contemporary theoretical conference – art strike conference just simply reuses the money for conference-like activities and tends not to kill the topic during its course. 

The initiative is based on the premise that counter-cultural processes should obtain continuously renewed forms to strike against establishment and to gain international support.


 Redas Diržys