The punk ethos is often seen as a Western mindset, but is it an accurate assumption? In her upcoming book Punk Orientalism, award-winning curator and writer Sara Raza explores the revolutionary spirit of other parts of the world.
Released by art and culture publisher Black Dog Press, Punk Orientalism: The Art of Rebellion investigates the do-it-yourself attitude of the punk movement and how it is not limited to the Western world. Instead, author Sara Raza explores its association with territories that used to belong to the former Soviet Union.
By doing so, Sara wants to challenge readers and urge them to think differently about the art of resistance and rebellion. Promising to be a timely look at the concept of non-conformity, the book retraces the revolutionary artistic practices found in Central Asia, the Caucasus and the Middle East.
As you'd expect from a book dedicated to the punk methodology, the design and layout are suitably anarchic. Representing an experimental combination of fractured poetic forms, Punk Orientalism contains work by 31 contemporary art practitioners who have challenged state and academic policies. These trailblazers include the likes of Lida Abdul, Ergin Çavusoglu, Taus Makhacheva, Erbossyn Meldibekov, Ala Younis and Inci Eviner.
In a statement, Black Dog Press explains: "Punk Orientalism explores the spaces and places associated with the former Soviet Union, shedding light on some of the most underappreciated regions in the contemporary art world, as well as looking at the USSR's complex relationship with the Arab world, Iran and Turkey."
In the book's 176 pages, Sara reflects on the complex legacy of Soviet Orientalism and examines the 'punk' rejection of ideas and values imposed by state authority. Artwork and imagery are organised thematically, with the common thread of how history is a conduit to revolutionary thinking running throughout.
Black Dog Press adds: "This thought-provoking book highlights breaking free from the entrapment of imperialism and shines a light on one of the most under-researched regions in the contemporary art world."
Catherine Wood, Director of Programme at the Tate Modern, adds: "Raza plots a unique, artist-led global punk narrative for the 21st century, taking British punk aesthetics as a 'method' to chart a fascinating post-Soviet and post-colonial art history. It is a fresh and timely book, impressive in scope and bold in its vision."
Due to be released on 25 October, Punk Orientalism is available to pre-order from Black Dog Press for £24.95.