CONF Sep 22, 2021

Radical Culture in Eastern Europe in the 60s and 70s (online, 27 Sep–4 Oct 22)

online, Sep 27–Oct 4, 2021

Mari Laanemets

To the Left of Power? Radical Culture in Eastern Europe in the 1960s and 1970s

New research has put attention on the different faces of the Counterculture that emerged and spread in Eastern Europe under communist rule in the late 1960s and 1970s. Communes, psychedelics and other aspects of the hippie lifestyle were embraced as alternatives both to conservative 'bourgeois' life and the hollow revolutionary rhetoric of Soviet power. Some took a more ideological approach by aligning themselves to the Civil Rights and the Anti-Vietnam War movements in the West, or by drawing inspiration from the liberation movements in Cuba and Africa or even the Cultural Revolution in Mao's China. Sexuality and gender also formed new fronts of political action and thinking.

In this online workshop - organised in two separate sessions (with different Zoom links) - contributors will explore the ways in which Counter-Cultural affinities and New Left politics were channelled by artists, theatre, film-makers, writers, musicians and others in Eastern Europe in the 1960s and 1970s.

This event is free and open to all. No booking required - just log in to the zoom links below. All times CEST.

This workshop is organised by Ieva Astahovska, Mari Laanemets and David Crowley with the support of the Latvian Centre for Contemporary Art and the Nep4Dissent Research Network, an EU COST Action Association -

Full details of the programme, speaker bios and abstracts are available at


Monday 27 September 2021 - 14.00-17.30

Zoom link

Password 208522

Session 1 - chaired by Mari Laanemets and Ieva Astahovska

Gabriela Świtek
Against War and Fascism - The 1970 International Exhibition in Warsaw and the Pacifism of the Counterculture

Marko Zubak
US Counterculture and the Yugoslav Youth Press

Dorota Jarecka and Paulina Olszewska
Decolonizations from a Socialist Perspective

Magdalena Radomska
Was the Cobblestone a Weapon of the Proletariat in Hungarian Art of the 1970s?

Wiktoria Szczupacka
Art Workers Between Avant-Garde Art Circles and the Cultural Policy of the Late Communist State - KwieKulik’s Artistic Practice and the Issue of Work during the 1970s in the People’s Republic of Poland

David Crowley
‘New Art of the Times of the October Revolution’ or ‘Avant-garde and Revolution’?


Monday 4th October 2021 - 12.00-17.00

Zoom link

Password 044489

Keynote talk and conversation

Keti Chukhrov on 'Practicing the Good: Desire and Boredom in Soviet Socialism'

Session 2 - chaired by David Crowley

Alessandra Franetovich
‘Cosmic Thoughts’ in Moscow Conceptualism during the 1970s

Cristian Nae
Eclectic Spiritualism in Romanian Experimental Art during the 1970s

Ana Peraica
Between National Upheavals and the Culture of Drugs - On Some New Photographs of Red Peristyle (Split, Yugoslavia, 1968)

Samo Oleami
Slovene Neo-avantgardes 1964-75 - OHO and 442 / Pupilija Ferkeverk

Agata Jakubowska
Between Science of Desire and Free Love - Maria Pinińska-Bereś and Jana Želibská on female sexuality

Concluding discussion

CONF: Radical Culture in Eastern Europe in the 60s and 70s (online, 27 Sep–4 Oct 22). In:, Sep 22, 2021 (accessed Oct 28, 2021), <>.