Art and Culture in Wartime

Nikita Kadan, Gazelka, 2015. Courtesy of the artist and Kontakt Collection, Vienna

What is the role of art and culture in wartime, like in Ukraine now with its repercussions throughout Europe? The focal point of the seminar is the different modes in which cultural dynamics – from communicational to artistic ones – are activated between civil societies and institutions when power structures increase violence and repression within and outside their borders. Analyzing these phenomena in the past and the present, what can we learn to decipher and understand the current wartime?

Researchers in art and culture from the University of Copenhagen will share their expertise to shed light on the current situation through different topics: histories of martial imagery in the USSR; the informational war in Russia; the relationship established between State, society and artistic groups in the late Soviet Union; unofficial arts from Soviet Russia and Ukraine; cultural memory of war events and the history of Danish cultural diplomacy with USSR. 

The second part of the seminar focuses on the impact of the current war and its diplomatic consequences on all UCPH employees, researchers and students. How are they affected personally and professionally? Which difficulties and dilemmas are they forced to face? This great opportunity to share and discuss how the war affects directly our colleagues allows also to widen the debate on topics of international cultural diplomacy and intellectual and academic ethics towards institutions and individuals in times of conflict.

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14:05 Giada Dalla Bontà & Kristian Handberg Intro and welcome
14:10 Ilya Kaminsky reading 'We Lived Happily During the War' (recording)
14:20 Christina Kiaer Soviet Art and War
14:30 Valentyna Shapovalova Traditional values and the media in Russia
14:40 Giada Dalla Bontà The Hypernormalization of power in late Soviet culture: arts and society
14:50 Karen Vedel Suomussalmi’s Silent People. The Winter War addressed in site-specific choreography and the performance’s aftermath as a lieu de mémoire
15:00 Kristian Handberg Denmark and the USSR – cultural diplomacy during the Cold War
15:10 Open debate How does the war affect our research? What does intellectual and academic ethics mean in wartime?