Broken Narrative: The Politics of Contemporary Art in Albania

Broken Narrative, a dual-language English-Japanese edition, is a mirror of complexity encompassing history, politics, and contemporary art, which revolves around the cornerstones of Armando Lulaj’s artistic practice. The core of the book is formed by and extended interview of Lulaj by Marco Mazzi. This inquiry starts in the year 1997, a year of social and political upheaval in Albania, of anarchy, controversies and emigration, of toxic seeds of neoliberalism sprouting in an already wounded country, and continues to the present day, where politics, hidden behind art forms, has practically destroyed (again) every different and possible future of the country. This volume also sketch out a connection between the recent Albanian political context and contemporary art today, by considering the realities of Albania as essential for an understanding of the dynamics of international power in contemporary art and architecture, and the role of politics therein.

Broken Narrative represents an attempt to make political art in the actual international creative situation, which seems to be increasingly deaf to proposals charged with critical and subversive thinking. The book is bilingual in English and Japanese, ideally evoking the subversive films of the Red Army, active in Japan at the turn of the 1960s and ’70s, but also a subtle esthetics of Japanese poetry, which has inspired many of the works of Armando Lulaj. Broken Narrative is introduced by the preface of Jonida Gashi for the English text and by Osamu Kanemura for the Japanese translation.

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