Posted by voidmanufacturing on December 28, 2009
Hans Ulrich Obrist
In Conversation with Raoul Vaneigem
Hans Ulrich Obrist: I just visited Edouard Glissant and Patrick Chamoiseau, who have written an appeal to Barack Obama. What would your appeal and/or advice be to Obama?
Raoul Vaneigem: I refuse to cultivate any relationship whatsoever with people of power. I agree with the Zapatistas from Chiapas who want nothing to do with either the state or its masters, the multinational mafias. I call for civil disobedience so that local communities can form, coordinate, and begin self-producing natural power, a more natural form of farming, and public services that are finally liberated from the scams of government by the Left or the Right. On the other hand, I welcome the appeal by Chamoiseau, Glissant, and their friends for the creation of an existence in which the poetry of a life rediscovered will put an end to the deadly stranglehold of the commodity. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in Anarchy, Cops Suck, Poetry, Spectacle, The French | 2 Comments »
Posted by voidmanufacturing on November 25, 2008
Richard Serra’s new show of monumental sculptures heralds the artist’s first exhibition in London for 16 years. In a rare interview, he talked with Adrian Searle about the evolution of his ideas and his plans for the future
For over 40 years, American artist Richard Serra has tested the limits and possibilities of sculpture, film and drawing. In the 1960s he began his investigation into the imaginative and physical potential of materials and their relationship with the site and viewer. Since the early 1970s Serra has become best-known for the monumental sculptures he has created for various architectural, urban and landscape settings. In 2007 New York’s Museum of Modern Art honoured Serra’s career with a retrospective and earlier this year his major work Promenade was installed at the Grand Palais, Paris. His current show at Gagosian Gallery, London, runs until 20 December, and includes three new steel sculptures. It is the first exhibition of the artist’s work in the UK since Weight and Measure was presented at the Tate Gallery in 1992. He gave a rare interview to Adrian Searle in London in late September.
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Posted in aRT, Poetry, Spectacle, The Americans | 4 Comments »
Posted by voidmanufacturing on October 30, 2008
Through the Glasses Darkly
What if the between-the-lines Republican message (don’t be afraid, there will be no real change) is the true illusion?
Today, even the strongest advocates of diminishing the excessive role of Washington accept the necessity of a state intervention that is sublime in its unimaginable quantity.
When the hero of John Carpenter’s 1988 They Live puts on a pair of weird sunglasses that he has stumbled upon in an abandoned church, he notices a billboard that once invited us to a Hawaii beach holiday now simply displays the words:
“MARRY AND REPRODUCE.” Ad copy on another billboard — this one for a new color TV — says, “DON’T THINK, CONSUME!”
The glasses, then, function as a device for the critique of ideology. In other words, they enable him to see the real message lying beneath the glossy, colorful surface.
What would we see if we were to observe the Republican presidential campaign through such glasses?The first thing would be a long series of contradictions and inconsistencies: Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in Brain, Buzzkill, Enemy, Spectacle, The Americans, The Bullshit Bailout | Leave a Comment »
Posted by voidmanufacturing on October 13, 2008
Sarah Palin: Operation “Castration”
translated by Jake Bellone with James Curley-Egan
The choice of Sarah Palin is a sign of the times. In politics, the feminine enunciation is hence called to dominate. But be careful! It’s no longer about women who play elbows, modeling themselves on the men. We are entering an era of postfeminist women, women who, without bargaining, are ready to kill the political men. The transition was perfectly visible during Hillary’s campaign: she began playing the commander in chief and, since that didn’t work, what did she do? She sent a subliminal message, one that said something like: “Obama? He’s got nothing in the pants.” And she immediately took it back, but it was too late. Sarah Palin is not only picking up where she left off but, being younger by fifteen years, she is otherwise ferocious, slinging feminine sarcasm like a natural; she overtly castrates her male adversaries (and with such frank jubilation!) and their only recourse is to remain silent: they have no idea how to attack a woman who uses her femininity to ridicule them and reduce them to impotence. For the moment, a woman who plays the “castration” card is invincible. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in Insanity, Spectacle, The French | 1 Comment »
Posted by voidmanufacturing on September 13, 2008
A remembrance of the author’s friendship with Guy Debord in the late 1950s and early 60s – with some theoretical reflections.
Debord, in the Resounding Cataract of Time
(David Blanchard, 1995)
There are moments in one’s existence that stand out, as if of a more solid texture, drawn in stronger lines contrasting with the uzziness and fathomless ambiguity of the rest of life. And they really are charged with objective meaning, imparted by the movement of a sort of historic overdetermination. Often that special quality only reveals itself retrospectively, but sometimes, too, it is perceived immediately. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in Alcohol, Communism, punk, Spectacle, The City, The French | 1 Comment »
Posted by voidmanufacturing on September 10, 2008
Being by numbers – interview with artists and philosopher Alain Badiou – Interview
Alain Badiou is an anomaly. What he has attempted has all the allure of the obviously impossible. That’s the fascination of the thing. Judge it retrograde or eminently contemporary, aberrant or a stroke of genius, but take it squarely for what it is: the painstaking effort on the part of an Althusserian Marxist, longtime Maoist, and unanalyzed disciple of Lacan to quit the confines that several generations of “limit-makers” have erected around philosophical practice. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in Communism, Poetry, Spectacle, The French | Leave a Comment »
Posted by voidmanufacturing on August 29, 2008
The Emancipated Spectator
I have called this talk “The Emancipated Spectator.”* As I understand it, a title is always a challenge. It sets forth the presupposition that an expression makes sense, that there is a link between separate terms, which also means between concepts, problems, and theories that seem at first sight to bear no direct relation to one another. In a sense, this title expresses the perplexity that was mine when Marten Spangberg invited me to deliver what is supposed to be the “keynote” lecture of this academy. He told me he wanted me to introduce this collective reflection on “spectatorship” because he had been impressed by my book The Ignorant Schoolmaster [Le Maitre ignorant (1987)]. I began to wonder what connection there could be between the cause and the effect. This is an academy that brings people involved in the worlds of art, theater, and performance together to consider the issue of spectatorship today. The Ignorant Schoolmaster was a meditation on the eccentric theory and the strange destiny of Joseph Jacotot, a French professor who, at the beginning of the nineteenth century, unsettled the academic world by asserting that an ignorant person could teach another ignorant person what he did not know himself, proclaiming the equality of intelligences, and calling for intellectual emancipation against the received wisdom concerning the instruction of the lower classes. His theory sank into oblivion in the middle of the nineteenth century. I thought it necessary to revive it in the 1980s in order to stir up the debate about education and its political stakes. But what use can be made, in the contemporary artistic dialogue, of a man whose artistic universe could be epitomized by names such as Demosthenes, Racine, and Poussin? Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in Spectacle, The French | Leave a Comment »