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Valuing Art and Autonomous Spaces: The Case of the Metelkova City Autonomous Cultural Zone

The article analyses the relationships between art, space, and autonomy, that autonomous zones use as the foundation for their resistance against the hegemony of capitalist production. Art and its value are dependent upon commodification and the »art market«, which are inevitably inscribed with capitalist and power codes. The article is based on semi-structured interviews with several artists from the Metelkova City autonomous zone. The author investigates their artistic activities and attempts to understand whether it is possible to escape the hegemonical way of art valorization – is it possible to valorize art on the basis of its effect on autonomous organization, solidarity, and enhancement of freedom? The symbolic value of an art work can play an important role in the preservation of space when it is integrated in broader community structures based on the principles of self-organization, autonomy, horizontality, and solidarity. As such, art is one of the main pilars of autonomous communities. Space and community give artistic engagement symbolic value and redefine the value of art. Value therefore derives from cultural and political codes of the autonomous space – the space creates a new, utopian dimension of art, and takes into account the importance of alternative, solidary organization of social and economic life.


Article inside journal

Issue No. 283 - Economy of Art in Slovenia in Yugoslavia 1960-2022
Časopis za kritiko znanosti
2021 , volume volume 49 , issue issue 283
12,90 € each (incl. tax - DDV)
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