Illustration accompanying a research paper (deutsch, pdf, 50 S., 2011) on the activities of the Open Society Institute in the ex-Eastern Bloc, with a focus on OSI’s support for contemporary art through the SCCA network.
The network of local organizations promoting contemporary art was one arm of a vast international charitable organization, financed by Wallstreet billionaire George Soros. Funding for contemporary art through his Open Society Foundation was flowing into Eastern European and post-Sovjet countries during the period of “transition to capitalism”.
The research project traces the background of Soros’ charitable organization (Open Society Foundation) and the underlying policies of art funding. It questions the role of art within societies as they adjust to real capitalism: is art a means of re-education for enlightened citizens who embrace mass privatizations, competition and free markets? If so, how is it to be done?
Art historian Miško Šuvaković coined the term ‘Soros Realism’, ironically referring to the typical forms of art resulting from the curatorial filters of the ‘Soros Centers for Contemporary Art’ (SCCA). The portrait-painting of George Soros responds critically to this stereotype by referencing an older stereotypical style, namely, Socialist Realism.
Working paper / case study on the effect and consequences of the SCCA (Soros Centers for Contemporary Art) in the countries of former Yugoslavia, as part of a wider research into the charitable work of US billionaire George Soros and its political implications in the post-communist world. This ongoing project aims to describe and compare ideologies of contemporary art funding.
The paper reflects the situation of 2011 and has not been updated since.