A reflection on the way contemporary art reflects its social role.
How does art cope with the demand for its autonomy, where the results—as in modern science—are not judged by their distribution or practical application, but as a contribution to the expansion of our knowledge? Using a number of examples of specific works, but also emphasizing the historical typology of the figure of the individual artist as a genius, author, scientist, organizer, activist, as well as their gender, self-stylization, stereotype and other aspects, we will ask how and why we actually should or can justify the role of art in society.
Michal Novotný studied art history, philosophy and anthropology at Charles University in Prague. Between 2011 and 2018 he was the director of the Centre for Contemporary Art FUTURA in Prague. From 2016 to 2018 he worked as a conceptual dramaturge and external curator at PLATO. Since 2016 he has been an assistant professor at the Academy of Arts, Architecture and Design in Prague. His significant independent exhibition projects include a series of group exhibitions Orient (Kim?, Riga, BOZAR, Brussels, Bunkier Sztuki, Krakow, 2018), Orient2 (Kunsthalle Bratislava, 2019), Orient V (GHMP, Prague, 2019). Currently, he is also Director of the Collection of Modern and Contemporary Art at the National Gallery Prague.