Contemporary Art Theory

“Igor Zabel: Contemporary Art Theory” brings for the first time a comprehensive selection of Igor Zabel’s writings in the English language. This important translation brings forward Zabel’s thinking and writing on modern and contemporary art from Socialist Realism and Conceptual Art to Post-Modernism and Contextual Art, particularly in Slovenia and Eastern Europe.

Igor Zabel was one of the key art historians and theoreticians in Slovenia who defined contemporary art as an art historical concept and not only as artistic production created in the present, in the literal meaning of the word. In his writings, Igor Zabel also repeatedly examined how a particular art concept is to be understood, especially when a certain conception has become canonised in the art historical narrative. Written between the beginning of the 1990s and his death in 2005, Zabel is discussing the conceptualization of contemporary art, its aesthetical, politico-economic and ideological implications, and the theoretical tools we use today to interpret and historicise ‘art’.

“Igor Zabel: Contemporary Art Theory”, edited by Igor Španjol, was published in November 2012 by JRP Ringier in co-edition with Les presses du réel and Igor Zabel Association for Culture and Theory, ERSTE Foundation and Moderna galerija.