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Dr Goran Petrovic - Lotina


School of Creative Arts, Performance and Visual Cultures


Room F208, Millburn House University of Warwick,

Coventry, CV4 7HS.


Born in Yugoslavia, Goran Petrović Lotina is an author, scholar, and curator who has published widely on the interplay between art, politics, and theory. Prior to obtaining his PhD at the University of Ghent, he studied at Sciences Po Paris and at the University of Belgrade. He is Research Fellow at the University of Warwick and Lecturer at Sciences Po: The Paris Institute of Political Studies. As a curator, Petrović Lotina collaborated with numerous international institutions. He is a member of l'Association internationale des critiques d'art.


  • PhD, Performance Studies, from Ghent University
  • Master Degree in Arts and Politics from Sciences Po Paris
  • Master Degree in Art History from the University of Belgrade
  • Bachelor Degree in Art History from the University of Belgrade


  • IAS Awards, University of Warwick (2022)
  • Marie Skłodowska-Curie fellowship grant (2019/22).
  • CWO Commission Scientific Research Belgium (2014-19).

Research Interests

My research is interdisciplinary in nature. I combine political philosophy and performance theory to examine the political dimensions of performance. My main field of inquiry is to explore how performance practices contribute to contesting dominant politics and invigorate democracy. I find inspiration in contemporary theories of conflict, democracy, populism, strategy, and discourse, and have published around these topics in different journals and books.

Publications (selection)

Performing Left Populism (Bloomsbury 2023), co-edited with Théo Aiolfi.

Currently, I am writing two articles in French: Performance et politique (2023), and, La dimension politique de la performance (2023).

I have consolidated my recent research findings in my book Choreographing Agonism: Politics, Strategies, and Performances of the Left (Palgrave Macmillan 2021). The book offers new insight on the connections between politics and performance. Exploring the political and philosophical roots of a number of recent leftist civil movements, the book forcefully argues for a re-imagining of artistic performance as an instrument of democracy capable of contesting a dominant politics. Inspired by post-Marxist theories of discourse theory, hegemony, conflict, and pluralism, and using tension as a guiding philosophical, political, and artistic force, the book expands the politico-philosophical debate on theories of performance. It offers both scholars and practitioners of performance a thought-provoking analysis of the ways in which artistic performance can be viewed politically as ‘agonistic choreo-political practice,’ a powerful strategy for mobilising alternative ways of living together and invigorating democracy.

In “Performance and Populism. Choreographing Popular Forms of Collectivity” (The Oxford Handbook of Performance and Politics, edited by Milija Gluhović, Silvija Jestrović, Michael Saward and Shirin Rai. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2021) I engage with the recent populist movements, theories of populism, and theoretical formulations of the people on the political Left, to explore imaginary ways of articulating popular forms of collectivity through artistic performances (Rimini Protokoll). I acknowledge a view of populism as a political logic by means of which society gets divided into two camps: the people and the elite. I suggest that a populist-political logic of the left could be envisaged through a set of performance practices that enable articulation of the multitude (Spinoza; postoperaists) into the people (Hobbes; post-foundationalists), thus stressing the role of the people in reshaping politics, institutions, and governments.

In "Theatricality: A Dramatic Form of Contesting Spectatorial Codes" (Performance Research, 24 : 4 (2019): 68-75), I have envisaged encounter between the spectator and the performing body in terms of tension or drama that challenges sedimented spectatorial codes: the ways in which spectators experience objects and forms of identity that are performed. This view recognises an indispensable moment of articulation of affects into discursive representations in these processes. It is inspired by phenomenology (Merleau-Ponty), semiotic phenomenology (Rosenthall, Visetti, la Mantia, Bondi) and discourse theory (Foucault, Lalclau, and Mouffe).

In “Reconstructing the Bodies: Between the Politics of Order and the Politics of Disorder” (in: Shifting Corporealities in Contemporary Performance: Danger, Im/mobility and Politics, edited by Marina Gržinić and Aneta Stojnić, 143-163. London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2018), I engage with Jacques Rancière's model of communal anarchism which implies the strategies of rupture and Chantal Mouffe's model of agonistic democracy which implies the strategies of engagement, and demonstrate in which way these different strategies produce effects on formulating the political dimension of artistic performances. Taking historical avant-garde as a point of reflection, I show that the former strategy does not provide conditions for envisaging the contesting political dimension of performance.

In "The Political Dimension of Dance: Mouffe's Theory of Agonism and Choreography” (Performing Antagonism: Theatre, Performance and Radical Democracy, edited by Tony Fisher & Eva Katsouraki, 46:66. London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2017), I engage with Ernesto Laclau and Chantal Mouffe's theories to examine the relevance of their key concepts — discourse, a(nta)gonism, and hegemony — for performance studies, with a particular focus on the body in contemporary artistic choreographies. Then, I formulate what I mean by the political dimension of performance and distinguish between complying and contesting performance practices.

Scientific meetings

2021, November 3-5.

Conference "Performance and Populism. Mobilisation, Popular Power and Embodiment on the Left". University of Warwick and University of California-Berkeley. Conference Initiator and Co-organiser. Co-organised with Angela Marino (University of California-Berkeley). Organisational committee: Théo Aiolfi (University of Warwick) and Rebecca Struch (University of California-Berkeley).

2018 - 2019

PEPPER RAD CLUB: Philosophy, Ethology, Politics and Performance Reading and Discussion Club, Ghent University, Belgium. Founder and Moderator.


Doctoral School “Art and Politics: Thinking Art with the Agonistic Politico-philosophical Theory of Chantal Mouffe”. With Prof. Chantal Mouffe (University of Westminster, UK) as the key-note lecturer and choreographer Arkadi Zaides (IS) as a guest lecturer. Organiser and co-moderator.

Curatorial projects (selection)

2018- FOGO ISLAND FILM: RESISTANCE AND RESILIENCE (multi-annual screening and lecture programme on nature and society). Founder and co-curator, together with Alexandra McIntosh. Fogo Island, Canada.

2016 IDENTIFICATIONS, Fogo Island Arts, Canada. Participants: Chantal Akerman, Manon de Boer, Marta Popivoda, Frederick Wiseman.

2015 REAPPEARING THINGS, Kunsthalle Vienna.

2014   DISAPPEARING THINGS, at The 55th October Salon, Belgrade.

2011   NICOLINE VAN HARSKAMP AND SATCH HOYT, Kaai Theatre, Brussels. Advisor. Spoken World Festival.

2011 (UN)TRANSLATABILITY, Casa Vecina, Mexico City. Co-curator with Lasse Lau.

2009 SLAVS AND TATARS: HYMNS OF NO RESISTANCE, Kaai Theatre, Brussels. Advisor. Spoken World Festival.

2008 RECORDED IMAGES: REVISITING THE 70S, Art Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide.

2005/7 INQUIRY INTO REALITY: THE DISAPPEARANCE OF PUBLIC SPACE. Regional, 2 years, multimedia, 6- part, art project. Book. Production: Omen Theatre Belgrade. Museum of Contemporary Art Belgrade; Sarajevo Centre for Contemporary Art; Press to Exit Project Space Skopje; The Museum of Contemporary Art Banja Luka; Belgrade Cultural Centre.

2005 GENESTETIC: JOE DAVIS, O3one Gallery, Belgrade. Co-curator and co-organiser with Tatjana Orbović and Art Center Kapelica, Ljubljana, Slovenia.

2005  20/21 +, Press to Exit Project Space, Skopje, North Macedonia.

2004/5  20/21, Zvono Gallery, Belgrade, The Gallery of Contemporary Fine Arts, Niš, National Museum, Kruševac, Cultural Center, Pančevo, Serbia.

2000 NIJEDAN DAN BEZ CRTE (NULA DIES SINE LINEA). Gallery Grafički Kolektiv, Belgrade. co-curator, with Marija Vuković.


Flemish Ministry for Culture, Sport and Media, ECF European Cultural Foundation, Pro Helvetia Swiss Cultural Program, Open Society Foundation, Steirischer Herbst, Serbian Ministry of Culture, City of Belgrade, Flemish Audiovisual Fund, Austrian Cultural Forum, City of Niš Serbia.

Other activities

2019- CONSULTANT. EU Funding Programme; European Commission: Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency (EACEA).

2019- FOUNDER and CO-CURATOR. Fogo Island Film, Fogo Island, Newfoundland, Canada.

2010/13 PROGRAMME MANAGER. Kran Film Collective, Brussels.

2009-11 ADVISOR. Spoken World Festival. Kaai Theatre, Brussels.

2003/06 PRODUCER. Omen Theatre, Belgrade.