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Protest art as a moment of rebellion

Karla Tepež
University of Ljubljana, Faculty of Social Sciences
Year of Publication

In this diploma thesis, we focus on the reconceptualisation of politics and on the analysis of the relationship between art and politics based on the concept of infrapolitics, which helps us establish art as an everyday form of resistance. With an extended space of political, we then use Ranciére’s reading of art as a form of emancipation in the aesthetic regime of art to perceive political capabilities of art. We contextualise how protest art became active as a moment of resistance through avant-garde movements of the 20th century, which blurred the boundaries between art and life. An important consideration of protest art also lies in a new reading of critical theory focussing on the colonisation of everyday life, which we can read as a constitutive element of protest art. Readings of selected politics of aesthetics theories, avantgarde movements, and critical theories have an important contribution when we try to conceptualise the notion of protest art, which we also illustrate with selected artistic practices. The moment of resistance is therefore seen as a key element of protest art conceptualisation because it points at the potential of art for imagination and realisation of social changes – as such, protest art is distinctively political and works as a praxis of resistance.