Sometimes after decades of tectonic shifting of political plates, they collide and an eruption hits the surface. 1989 was one of years when that happened, when the fall of the Berlin Wall signalled an enormous change in the political structure of the world. Outside of Europe, the apartheid regime in South Africa collapsed, and the Chinese government flattened the student demonstrations in Beijing.
The year is the focus point of Nationalmuseum’s new exhibition 1989 – Culture And Politics, which describes it as a year when “big politics met the grey everyday”. It looks at the cultural side of 1989 – how were these events reflected, predicted and depicted in the cultural products of the time? It collects footage, photos, art and more from a range of artists in an attempt to capture the way these events were documented, and how they extended into every crack and corner of life, and the conflict between freedom and oppression, and different ideas about what those two words mean.
1989 – kultur och politik, Sep 5 – Jan 2020, Nationalmuseum
Photo: Stuart Franklin/Magnum Photos