Institute of Advanced Studies (IAS)


Dr Reuben Fowkes

Research Centre: Post-socialist Art Centre

Dr Reuben Fowkes is an art historian, curator and co-director of the Post-socialist Art Centre (PACT) at the Institute of Advanced Studies, UCL. He is co-founder of the Translocal Institute for Contemporary Art, a centre for transnational research into East European art and ecology that operates across the disciplinary boundaries of art history, contemporary art and ecological thought. He is a member of the Environmental Arts and Humanities Initiative (EAH) at Central European University and an editor of the journal Third Text.

He jointly heads the programme Confrontations: Sessions in East European Art History (2018-20), which investigates the entangled histories of East European art through a series of itinerant symposia held across and beyond the region.  This Getty Foundation Connecting Art Histories supported project aims to facilitate the collective research of an international group of emerging scholars engaged with art movements and phenomena that have yet to be given substantive comparative treatment, focusing in particular on the under-researched periods before and after the neo-avant-garde.

He is the co-author of the forthcoming Thames & Hudson World of Art series book on Central and Eastern European Art Since 1950 and guest editor of a special issue of Third Text on Actually Existing Artworlds of Socialism. Recent publications include a chapter in Art and Theory of Post-1989 Central and Eastern Europe: A Critical Anthology (Museum of Modern Art: New York, 2018), an article on ‘Placing Bookmarks: The Institutionalisation and De-Institutionalisation of Hungarian Neo-Avant-Garde and Contemporary Art’ in the journal Tate Papers, and a chapter on ‘Visualising the Socialist Public Sphere,’ in the Cambridge History of Communism.

He is the author of numerous catalogue texts and regular contributor to contemporary art magazines and given presentations in prominent contemporary art venues such as MoMA New York, ICA London, Whitechapel Gallery, Pérez Art Museum Miami and MACBA Barcelona. Recent curatorial projects include the include the Anthropocene Experimental Reading Room, the Danube River School, the conference on Vegetal Mediations, as well as the exhibition Walking without Footprints.