In the Name of Brâncuşi: Complexes, Projections, and Historical Symptoms
This essay focuses on a specific case study: the rela- tionship between the Romanian artist Constantin Brâncuşi and the Venice Biennale. In a broader sense, the paper analyzes how notions such as nationalism are configured through an artistic personality who had (and still has) a tense affiliation to Romanian culture, Brâncuşi's place of origin. Being rather a report on a phenomenon that is still active in the contemporary local mentality, this analysis focuses on different types of situations that the art historian encounters when looking at Brâncuşi's presence in the context of the national representation at an international art event such as the Venice Biennale, during a longer period of time, between 1924 and 2013. It explores the official art history, as well as an alternative one which is characterized by the notion of potential.