m1 (turm4)
Monday, 1. March 2010

Seminar: Decolonizing Knowledge and Life through Theory and Art

Tuesday, 2. 3. 2010 – Semperdepot, M1
– open to general public

21:00 Seminar: Decolonizing Knowledge and Life through Theory and Art

Reading: Belinda Kazeem, Nicola Lauré al-Samarai, and Peggy Piesche:
“Museum. Space. History: New Sites of Political Tectonics A virtual exchange between”
english: translate.eipcp.net
german: translate.eipcp.net

Organized by: Ivana Marjanović, PhD candidate, Academy of Fine Arts Vienna
For whom: for all, mandatory for students PCAP, Akbild, Vienna
Format: reading group, discussions, conceiving art works based on art and theory connection
Students are invited to join at any point.

In the PCAP (Post Conceptual Art Practices) for many years as part of the class structure reading groups and connections of art and theory were exposed, organized and supported. This school year a project as a theory seminar is proposed by one of the participants of these reading groups in the past.
The project takes the form of theory seminar and even more proposes theory as activation in contemporary art.
The project topic is LIFE.
In the context of the present discussions about the overall intensification of the capitalist concept of life it is necessary to pose the question about what life are we talking about here and now. Or, maybe it is even necessary that we stop to think only and solely about life and take death as the measure of a new biopolitics that accordingly to Achille Mbembe we can name necropolitics. Developed in the context of Africa, necropolitics is more and more present in the heart of Europe, due to the processes that are going on here and now, one is de-territorialised colonialism. Thus, it is the historical (colonial) phenomenon of necropolitics and the sovereign power that exercise death that is more and more intensified not only through contemporary wars but as well through migration politics and EU asylum politics, structural violence and institutionalized racism. The colonial matrix of power consisting of the control of economy, the control of authority, the control of gender and sexuality and the control of knowledge and subjectivity is nowadays determining all spheres of life. Such state of things is shaping the knowledge and artistic production as well. Therefore, we are facing constant reproduction of imperial knowledge and art production that is excluding intellectuals, artists, cultural workers who are not privileged to be labeled as intellectuals from the First Capitalist World.

The project “Seminar Decolonizing Knowledge and Life through Theory and Art” deals with the above mentioned issues, emphasizing how art and contemporary theory together can contribute to the overall social struggle for the rearticulation of the social and political spaces.

Selected texts will be read and then discussed in the seminar. Students will present chapters and parts of texts. The seminar will encourage discussion, critical thinking and finally reflection on how to appropriate the proposed theoretical body of work in artistic practice.

The project “Seminar Decolonizing Knowledge and Life through Theory and Art” is conceptualized as a continuation of the theory reading group that was organized in the past in the Post-conceptual Art Practices class by Marina Gržinić and Ivana Marjanović. The theory reading group practice has showed that there is a growing interest by students for reading theory and discussing it in the format of reading group and thus the idea of organizing a special seminar appeared.

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