STUDIO BONN. Discourse at the Bundeskunsthalle

The Common Ground
Art and Culture in Times of War

Tuesday, 26 April, 7 pm
Live in the Forum
Talk in English


The war of aggression against the Ukraine is resurrecting the spectres of the 20th century: The Russian president legitimises the destruction of a country that is led by a Jewish head of state and home to a burgeoning Jewish community as a ‘denazification programme’, and his supporters stylise themselves as victims of Nazi persecution. Has history become a video game, as Eva Illouz recently wrote in DIE ZEIT? Is violence repeating itself because there is no collective memory in post-Soviet Russia, as Olga Grjasnowa argued in DER SPIEGEL? And do we, here in Germany, even have a map of shared cultural history on which we can situate the Ukraine?

In bestsellers like Gefühle in Zeiten des Kapitalismus (Adorno Lectures 2004), sociologist EVA ILLOUZ, born in Morocco in 1961, explores the shaping of human relationships by the media and the economy. Illouz is Director of Studies at the Centre européen de sociologie et de science politique, CSE-EHESS in Paris and Professor of Sociology at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, from where she joins us.
Eva Illouz' Article in DIE ZEIT

OLGA GRYASNOVA came to Germany from Baku via Moscow and Warsaw in 1996 as the child of Jewish intellectuals. Her acclaimed novels, including All Russians Love Birch Trees and Die juristische Unschärfe einer Ehe (‘The Legal Uncertainty of a Marriage) are sharply drawn portraits of a generation shaped by wars and migration. Her essay Die Macht der Mehrsprachigkeit (‘The Power of Multilingualism’) (Duden 2021) describes structural impediments in the German education system
Olga Grjasnowa in the podcast Alles Gesagt

On 20 February 2022, the artist VOLO BEVZA (born in Kyiv in 1993) travelled to Kyiv with his partner Victoria Pidust for the opening of his exhibition. Trapped by the Russian attack on the morning of 24 February, they both turned to forging tank barriers near Lviv. In paintings and installations, Bevza explores the social-media-fuelled crisis of the representability of reality.
Conversation with Volo Bevza and Victoria Pidust
Statement from Bevza's Bonn gallery Galerie Judith Andreae

Chaired by: Kolja Reichert