Elvan Zabunyan


Elvan Zabunyan,contemporary art historian and art critic based in Paris, is professor at University of Rennes. For over 20 years, her work had focused on North American (and mainly African American) contemporary art history investigating its political, cultural, social, racial and gendered modalities.  Desirous of affirming a history of art that is connected and without barriers, the subject of her research has naturally drawn her toward notions such as centers and peripheries, cultural displacement, scattered territories, the African diaspora, notions that have been associated with a need to unlock periodicity to understand the issues in colonial history and their impact on artistic and visual representations. Her current book project on cultural production since the 1960s and the memory of slavery in the US and in the Caribbean is thought as a renewal of these research activities and wishes to investigate the routes for a global art history. She is the author of numerous articles in periodicals and essays in books and exhibition catalogues. Her book Black is A Color, a History of African American Contemporary Artpublished in French (2004) and English (2005) won the research prize 2005 SAES/AFEA. She was in 2016-2017 the co-director of the annual program of Deutsches Forum für Kunstgeschiste in Paris centering on the plural decolonial perspectives of historiographies deconstructing the colonial hegemony of the Western world. She is the leader of the work package « Artists and Citizens » for the European research program ECHOES (European Colonial Heritage Modalities in Entangled Cities) – 2018-2021.

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