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A C E R TA I N M A - N E S S
O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A - N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF UNDER PRESSURE U T E M E TA B A U E R I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P… ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS POSING SINGUL ARIT Y JAN VERWOERT ROOM FOR THOUGHT SIMON SHEIKH U N C E R TA I N M A - N E S S MICK WILSON A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL
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JOURNAL OF ARTISTIC RESE ARCH SUMMER 2008
EDI TOR I AL
Too many conferences currently being organized by art academies draw attention to the recent development of
PhD’s in art trajectories. Yet an even more important issue
3 – 4 EDITORIAL
A C E R TA I N M A - N E S S
5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A - N E S S
WILLEM DE GREEF
today pertains to the speciﬁcity of MA Fine Art programs of art academies. After all, it is the master’s program, focused on research, that prepares artists for a possible PhD trajectory; it is the master’s program that offers artists various perspectives on their professional careers; and it is the master’s program and its strong emphasis on the speciﬁcities of its curriculum that force the bachelor’s program to reﬂect on the particular structure of its own curriculum. Moreover, in spite of the obligation to implement the Bologna rules by 2010, many European countries interpret the concrete establishment of the master’s program in various ways. In some countries, a one-year program is offered, while other countries concentrate on a two-year program. Some countries have had master’s programs in Fine Art for many years, whereas others hardly adhere to the deadline for the implementation of a master’s program. These clear-cut urgencies indicate a deﬁnite need for an international symposium addressing the issue of the speciﬁcity of the MA Fine Art programs. In order to explore these questions further the Utrecht Graduate School of Visual Art and Design ( MaHKU ) started a longterm collaboration project with the Brussels Sint Lukas Academie, an academy which, similar to MaHKU, offers a one-year MA program in Fine Art. A series of meetings last year between lecturers from the Sint Lukas Academy and the MaHKU generated a number of additional questions. It turned out that a variety of issues could be categorized in three sub-categories: the student perspective or the question of competencies; the lecturer’s perspective or the question of speciﬁc didactic strategies; and last but not least, the perspective of the institutional environment where the interaction between lecturer and student takes place. Precisely these three perspectives – addressing the same issue from different points of view – are departure points for the symposium A Certain Ma-ness ( Amsterdam, Spring 2008 ) organized by both academies in collaboration with VCH De Brakke Grond, Amsterdam. During the ﬁrst two presentations ( Jan Verwoert, Clementine Deliss ) the perspective of MA-competencies is the starting point. The issue pertains to whether it is possible to map the various skills required for the MAprogram particularly with regard to a reﬂective and critical attitude, and a conception of both knowledge production and research. How can we assess these competencies? Could it be that speciﬁc, rhetorical qualities are decisive? What will happen to traditional skills such as mastery of technique? Is the artist unskilled despite having followed the graduate program or are traditional skills reformulated during the course of the program and its critical studies? What do critical and contextualizing skills mean for the situation of the academy as such? Is the graduate art academy eventually nothing more than a bastion of the neo-liberal art system as is often the case with prominent American MFA program’s,
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or is the academy still clearly deﬁned as an outpost for a culturecritical awareness? During the next two presentations ( Simon Sheikh, Mick Wilson ) the perspective shifts to didactic strategies. Can one determine how a MA curriculum is characterized? What are adequate didactic strategies and educational models, and how do they differ from a BA program? What are the differences and similarities between the various European MA Fine Art programs? How does the Bologna-ruled, curriculum-based program and its seminars, lectures, and various methods and bodies of knowledge relate to the still dominant studiobased paradigm with its rituals of tutorials and studio visits? How do we prevent a more topical discourse based on critical studies and artistic research becoming canonized into a novel form of academia? Finally, how do the current educational strategies and models relate to the research practice of lecturers? In other words, how could the lecturer’s own artistic research be strategically deployed in the curriculum? The question of the position of one’s own artistic research leads us also to the theme of the research environment. Is it the task of the academy to develop a speciﬁc artistic research environment? How should such an experimental research environment be facilitated? How does such a research environment relate to the artistic ﬁeld mostly determined by the free market system? Is it the potential of the experimental environment as one of the last asylums for deviant forms of knowledge production ( or thinking ) that made a great number of curators decide in recent years to proclaim the academy as the starting point for their exhibition projects? Investigating the issue of the academy as ﬁeld of possibilities from the perspective of the Graduate School appears urgent. In other words, in what way – political, facilitative, infrastructural – could the Graduate School contribute to the development of a research climate in art education? These questions are approached during A Certain Ma-Ness in two ways. First, artists Tiong Ang and Aglaia Konrad developed a presentation in the exhibition space of VCH De Brakke Grond parallel to the themes of the symposium. The exhibition shows the interaction between the research of the lecturer ( Tiong Ang, MaHKU and Aglaia Konrad, Sint Lukas ) and of the student ( Filip Gilissen, Sint Lukas, Joris Lindhout, MaHKU ) as a didactic tool for creating a dynamic research environment within the current educational system ( The visual material printed in MaHKUzine 5 is a series of impressions of this parallel exhibition ) . Secondly, Bart Verschaffel’s talk, Willem de Greef’s introduction, and the presentation of the Utrecht Consortium ( see Research Reports ) all elaborate further on the conditions and possibilities of an artistic research environment. It was Ute Meta Bauer at the Vienna School of Art who was one of the ﬁrst people in the art academy ﬁeld to address these questions and issues in the context of institutional preconditions. Therefore, she opens the symposium A Certain Ma-ness with a keynote statement. ( HS )É
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3 – 4 EDITORIAL
A C E R TA I N M A - N E S S
5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A - N E S S
WILLEM DE GREEF
7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E
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and only in Flanders. those provided by what we call the “hogescholen” ( higher educational institutes ). By this we mean that higherlevel art institutes. Fact number two: arts education is a regular part of the Flemish educational system. education has not been a national matter. art education became a full part of the higher educational system. Nevertheless. Especially the academization of higher arts education. Fact number one: since 1989. for instance. As adopted by the Flemish Parliament in the 2003 Act on the structure of higher education in Flanders. will necessarily have to present or develop curricula for students which are clearly “embedded in research”. what could it probably mean? This is what this symposium is about.N E S S O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A .” Another important aspect is that there is only one kind of Master’s degree in Flanders. It has not always been so. just one decade ago. if they want to provide Master’s degrees. At present. Since then the Ministry of Education for the Flemish Community is responsible for higher education in Flanders. professional bachelor’s degrees are only provided by the “hogescholen”. the Flemish government started to implement the Bologna declaration some years ago. there are some peculiarities in the way the Flemish government has implemented the Bologna Declaration. be they practicebased or not. and no exception was made for higher arts education. Only in 1994. universities and non-universities alike. or at least in Flanders. or for artists. including reform of the Bachelor-Master degree structure.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . the largest part of the non-university higher education programs and courses.N E S S W I L L EM D E G R EEF To make it very clear from the outset. provided by both universities and “hogescholen”.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON . this symposium tries to deal with what we call in Belgium. are being transformed into “academically oriented” Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees. are generally transformed into what are called “professionally oriented” Bachelor’s degrees. Like all the other higher education programs and courses. and probably as a consequence of this. First and foremost. Other programs or courses.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 5 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . Instead there has been a complete devolution of competencies for education to the different linguistic communities. the 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . and believe me even in Dutch it sounds also quite weird: “academizing”. Is there really a need for this? And if so. In other words. Let me give you some facts on the educational system in Belgium. Art students have to become academics or develop some basic competencies in research. the subject of this symposium is not PhD’s or doctorates in the arts. higher arts education has undergone and is still undergoing several reforms.A C E R TA I N M A . while academic bachelor’s and master’s degrees are provided by universities and by the “hogescholen. meaning the Flemish and French groups in Belgium. Contrary to the Netherlands. Which means that only since then were its structure and its qualiﬁcations aligned with the rest of the system.
between arts education and research? Does it mean. today nearly all courses in higher arts education in Flanders are supposed to be leading to a Master’s degree. for instance. all over Europe.Flemish government has chosen not to introduce a “professionally oriented” degree at the Master’s level. Is there really a need for this ? Do all students in the arts really need to follow this academic track. How would an academic curriculum look which still made sense for higher arts education and for art students? What are the academic competencies they are supposed to develop? More profoundly.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . My own institute. to put it differently.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 6 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . Many arts institutes. does the difference sharply evident in Flanders between professionally oriented and academic course programs make any sense in higher arts education? Secondly. does all of this not demand a change in the structure of higher arts education itself? For instance. each of the “hogescholen” has been afﬁliated with a university. Firstly. Therefore. Moreover. should higher arts institutes become fully embedded in the universities and evolve into a full faculty department at the university? Do universities have enough experience with performing arts? At least in Flanders it is no secret that artistic research is an underdeveloped. I believe this symposium offers us a wonderful opportunity for discussing these issuesÉ . for most of the Flemish politicians it is widely accepted that the “hogescholen” cannot possibly meet this requirement for “academization” without a helping hand from the universities. is associated with the Catholic University of Leuven. All these issues are not unique to Flanders. what type of research should they develop? Importantly. they will necessarily have to reset their targets and to rethink the curriculum. scientiﬁc domain. Let me just point out some of them. how can one evaluate the quality of the research done by higher arts institutes or departments? Fourthly. if not undeveloped. Some have called it the academic drift of the arts institutes or departments. Even the Flemish minister of education himself stated recently that the helping hand of the universities in the process of academization cannot be more than a small ﬁnger.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON Or are their artistic or professional qualities more important? Does it mean that higher arts institutes have to develop their own research programs? If so. All Master’s degrees in Flanders are supposed to be academic. how do we make a clear link. are looking for the best way to deliver excellent art education within an outstanding academic context. All this undoubtedly poses many questions. is the identity as such of higher arts education not at stake here? Thirdly. if higher arts institutes want to transform their traditional programs into academic programs. if we want to. One of the major consequences of this choice is that all Master’s degree programs have to be “embedded in research”. that in the near future all staff members of art schools should hold doctorates or a PhD? 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . or is there still a need for more professionally oriented programs? Or. the Hogeschool Sint-Lukas Brussel.
MA courses have expanded both in the ﬁeld of artistic education and curatorial studies to serve an ever-growing market. there is a certain pressure on the art schools to connect early with the art market and to generate a smooth entry into the system while the future artist is still in school. 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . The art schools and universities – previously more free and open zones for experiments – gradually became incorporated into a suspiciously commodiﬁed system. The exorbitant tuition fees in the US put a certain pressure to “succeed” on both the institution and the student.UNDER PRESSURE U T E M E TA B AU ER The art system. This is not only for programs in the United States. being a critical scholar myself. In order to serve these expectations. But was this what we meant when we asked for more visibility as young art students twenty ﬁve years ago? Weirdly enough. and has become an increasingly. Art students have more knowledge of the art market than ever before. producers of video clips. say. you want to know what the pay-off might be.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 7 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . This is a major shift as compared to. Then the debate centered around what the majority of art students would do who never entered the golden triangle of the academy–gallery–museum. The strong market has made art education red hot.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . On the one hand. and “creating” successful artists has become a standard promise on the mission statements of and calls for applications to MA programs. attractive ﬁeld within education. critical curatorial studies. Although I appreciate that today almost everyone can be a producer of some kind. and so forth. I am not sure this is a positive development. Culture and art are signiﬁcant economic factors leaving their mark on how art education is shaped. even ten years ago. and so on? But with the expansion of the market through a new generation of collectors and the globalization of the market itself including the biennial boom. the desired and demanded accessibility to this “ ﬁeld of distinction” for a larger number of people has ﬁnally become a reality. one wonders where will all these students go when they leave the institution with their degrees in their pockets? If you invest so much into your education. Would they instead become more creative web designers. which is a indeed a welcome specialization disrupting the dominance of hundreds of years of European “master schools” established in order to select and form “the best. to critical studies. it feels as if the art market has replaced the music industry. are opening their doors to the public. This might be the case in London as well. Today there are more exhibitions taking place. more art institutions opening their doors and more museums for contemporary art being established than ever before. More private collections. in more countries. especially the art market today has become part of the educational system. the chance of grabbing a seat on the art carousel has sharply increased. Art academies invent new programs ranging from MAs in public art.” Nevertheless. What might be more speciﬁc within the US American setting is the very short path from the art school to the gallery into a collection.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON . with its annual top of the pops and one-hit wonders.
no outside to the art market and vice versa. a black-and-white understanding of this complex system. Yet now the art schools seem pretty much part of the canon. The art world is and has always been a complex system. B A LT I C B A B EL . 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . Art and its different manifestations have become a powerful economical factor. each new spot popping up on the global map. galleries and so on. Myriad strategies are incorporated to serve the system. Art is now a lifestyle. and tomorrow Dubai and the Gulf. Solid educational foundations were provided by a ”master” when a school’s focus and reputation rested more upon skills and techniques. I don’t necessarily agree with that argument as grounds to support an opinion and debate. a growing industry producing scores of new job opportunities. new host sites for biennials. Where there is a biennial today. The market is part of the discursive ﬁeld. it is a system of interconnected relations. a kind of playground and creative laboratory when the academy was more innovative. some knowledge of system theory. H T T P :// W W W . as I still believe in artistic practice as a necessary critical contribution to the formation of societies. as stated above. These are not ﬁxed conﬁgurations and an institution today does not represent the same thing it did twenty years ago.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . “Off” spaces nowadays are not necessarily more political than a museum. some more antagonistic. and in which direction we move. F R I E Z E . where each “actor” decides where we position ourselves. To assume the same clear divisions exist as did maybe twenty-ﬁve years ago would be overly simplifying. A S P ? B AC K = 1& F = 119 8 . To me there is no outside to the institution. C O M / F E AT U R E I S S U E 101 I S S U E 101 . as this depends on how and by whom a space or institution is run. and are we not in need of art schools too at all these newly emerging locations? Again I am of two minds. tomorrow there is an art fair as well. This brings us back to the art schools. Yesterday it was China. young curators. I support the improved access to discourse and modes of production in many places of the world. Are they still places to discuss the meaning of artistic production within the larger ﬁeld of culture? Do they negotiate the role art plays in contemporary society? Previously. art has become a huge globally operating machine in need of skilled labor. a ﬁeld of constellations and interrelations. some reading of ΩFRIEZE. Therefore. However. as Guy Debord presents in his text and ﬁlm. through current exhibitions and their various formats? What is their content and for whom are they being staged? The society of spectacle. The market embraces all too quickly. art academies and art schools were pre-market. There is a huge demand for fresh artists. the academy provided a somewhat sheltered “biotope” encouraging experience and wild growth. The questions we need to address are: What is communicated through this new art.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 8 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . The critical ﬁeld deﬁnes itself as distinct from the commercial sector. some are amicable. as today no one can afford such naiveté. is rife everywhere.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT 44 – 46 UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON _ S I N G L E . however. today India. But what will be left after the glory days have faded? A recent debate on New Institutionalism in “Bureaux de Change” by Alex FarquharsonΩ referred to a number of us freelance curators joining the “safe haven” of the institutions for higher artistic education. Additionally.The art market is growing rapidly.
I have been studying art myself. speciﬁcally those who previously held highproﬁle curatorial positions. The motivation actually causing my shift from working as an artist and organizer to curator and educator seems outdated. Rorty and Luhmann never hurts in becoming aware of our very own entanglements. From my perspective. To return to Farquharson’s mention of freelance “curators [re-] entering or ﬂirting with educational art institutions”: today’s conference topic does indeed raise the question of why curators in recent times have been accepting leading positions at art schools.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . but also the social topography of the art world at large. Art schools seem to offer a kind of temporary refuge for those with a desire to sustain a more critical and discursive practice. We – as an artists’ group. music. one reason is the increasing commodiﬁcation and instrumentalization of the position of the curator for all sorts of agendas and desires. one should not underestimate the potential and pleasure of working with students. ﬁlm. Therefore. To be mainly involved with satisfying trustees and/or local politicians rather than investing time researching ﬁelds that might be not that popular – this is not everyone’s cup of tea. the inspiration to be found in other related research ﬁelds. at least so far. universities etc. and the option of getting away from the sheer pragmatism of running the day-to-day business of a museum..N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON . I do not want to criticize my colleagues in art institutions and do not want to sound all too negative. did often not address what mattered to us or was not linked to our discussions about art. affected my desire to understand not only art theory. and some independence. speciﬁcally women. from what the art ﬁeld represents.Bourdieu. The exclusion of a younger generation of artists. from mainstream art institutions in those days. A second reason is that today’s director of a museum or a “Kunsthalle” is more involved in management and fundraising activities than in working on shows or directly with artists as was the case in the past. although a very open and liberal one. Instead of complaining. performance and theater. a European male-dominated art school setting. It was not until later that I understood that art history is not made 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A .over’ of the. but there was no space for us available and what we saw exhibited.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 9 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . we simply created our own formats and spaces and generated our own audiences. was a catalyst for me and some artist friends to generate something else. and poetry. called “Stille Helden” – were not completely opposed to art institutions. extended by post-graduate studies in art theory. I am quite aware of the inﬂuence of teachers and the impact of innovative institutional leadership in higher artistic education upon students. Today this all seems so far away. The wish to renegotiate the role of art through an expanded notion of artistic education allows a certain degree of distance. at least in the Western hemisphere. But what I currently see happening is the `take . We were students of the visual arts. Furthermore. but I want to express – and this I share with a number of my colleagues – a strong feeling of unease about the economic and political pressures that those who run museums increasingly have to face today. In my case. more distant locations by the market and its protagonists – and the pressure attached to the market is already felt.
The exploration of thoughts and work is a necessary focus in art education. It must be made clear. I feel the relation between art and exhibitions offers the option to test situations and combinations. As the 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . So. within art history that mattered to my generation – such as the already mentioned lack of female positions etc. being unpredictable prevented us from being co-opted. though. One should also not forget that a number of conceptual artists. and also the media power to “correct” and re-write art history. both formats produce a communicative space through artistic and intellectual means. those “institutions” are indeed highly interesting.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON . I still see certain gaps arising within the dominance of the market. it is not to create a showcase for students entering the market. I can only hope that at one point the necessity to interfere becomes strong enough to enter the history-producing apparatus. For obvious reasons they should take place as well within an apparatus of representation such as an art museum. the market dictates what art is produced and. and to analyze. and an inﬂation of temporary exhibition formats such as the exploding number of biennials on the other. in order to be able to implement a correction through a multitude of voices whenever necessary. shown. Inform. Yet teaching is also about the possibility and responsibility of transmitting a speciﬁc understanding and notion of a critical artistic and cultural practice to a younger generation of art students. When I studied art in the early 1980s as part of the group of young artists called “Stille Helden”. Being part of an artist group allowed us not to get pigeonholed. thus. there is a need for crucial debates within universities and other societal institutions focusing on those issues. To come back to teaching. to reﬂect. to discover. so nothing is wrong with involving students in exhibitions. and this made me sensitive towards being identiﬁed with an institution rather than with a distinct practice. One should not forget. I keep in mind the BBC’s founding mandate: “Educate. there is a deﬁnite advantage to “duck and cover” within an educational structure for a while. Facing today’s powerful art market with huge cash ﬂow on one hand. to share what I perceive. such as Hans Haacke at Cooper Union and Michael Asher at CalArts could only sustain their practice during previous high art markets due to their teaching positions. the infrastructure. though. offering them some independence. Even today I seek to ﬁnd “company” to explore. I see teaching in art schools as a practice in line with my curatorial work.in the garage. what the idea behind such participation is.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . We have to demand a review and a correction of public collections and force a change in outdated focus points. and the Carnegie International. I must have internalized this attitude. the Venice and Whitney biennials. An exhibition is equal to a seminar for me. But are there any shared intentions to do so at present? In that respect. or within opinion-creating blockbusters such as Documenta.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 10 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . And last. but not least. they have the budget. the authority on the art historical cannon is to a certain extent still in the hands of the major museums and based on their collections. this was my interest. and Entertain” as a healthy mix and a valid model. in those days as young artists we were far removed from having a master plan to develop and to manage a career. More and more..
One of my teachers in art theory at the Academy in Hamburg.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 11 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? Ω K Ü N S T L ER H AU S S T U T TG A R T F R O M 19 9 0 -19 9 4 CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . I realize that the art schools are too involved in the markets. a public space sphere within an institution for education. That keeps one alive and very sensitive to cultural developments. M A S S AC H U S E T T S / LO N D O N . while working as a curator for large-scale exhibitions such as Documenta11 or the 3rd Berlin Biennial. we should maintain a laboratory-type situation in the academies. while they should really be “free” thinkers.” I consider myself always to be the primary audience for my projects. But free of what? That question reminds me of Antonio Gramsci and his notion of the artist as organic intellectual whose role is not to act. In other words. I regret that the awareness of colonial. Today.. Later. to be challenged. J O S EP H : A R T A F T ER P H I LO S O P H Y A N D A F T ER C O L L E C T E D W R I T I N G S 19 6 6 -19 9 0 . 19 91 . its perception. is still crucial and important to me. these issues are addressed to pressure artists into being “do-gooders”. This understanding of generating an audience to develop a space of communication.conceptual artist Joseph KosuthΩonce stated so clearly: “. although the market is strong today. and class debates that once appeared in the curricula of art education disappear almost immediately through the back door now that they have a whiff of “PC ” about them. postcolonial. to subordinate or to serve a system. Since raising theoretical questions through both artistic and curatorial practice is one of my driving forces. the institutions were the opinion makers. Therefore. As long as we are able to address that in our educational positions. artists. art takes part in the economical and political reconﬁgurations on this planet as much as everything else. and the communication about it generates what we consider art. Today.an audience separate from the participants does not exist. I developed a view of the audience as informal participants over time. As an audience. Michael Lingner claimed that only the combination of a work of art. E N G L A N D : T H E M I T P R E S S . and the speed of the transformational process has been increased alongside the development of high consumption in general. work not so easily absorbed. Before that. curators.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT 44 – 46 UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON . my self-understanding of my position as a curator did not differ much from my self-understanding and way of working as a practicing artist right after ﬁnishing art academy.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . For me.. Such understanding has been continued by a number of recent political philosophers such as Toni Negri. but to be a critical and independent voice negotiating civil society. you have to engage in what you perceive. During the years I directed an artists-run space in StuttgartΩ.e. I recall that in the 1990s it was the curators who were considered the strong players in the ﬁeld. I view both art and curating as ephemeral and process-oriented work. it remains essential to enter institutional spaces and at the same time not to become too comfortable within them. museums. For example. and art schools as ﬁxed entities. gender. These notions are in constant ﬂux.. i. – 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . as an entity sharing and debating experiences. you have to participate to produce a discourse and to understand an art work. Globalization as such does not stop when it comes to art. but is more difﬁcult to achieve. Power positions are not static or written in stone. At the same time. C A M B R I D G E . and communicate that Ω KO S U T H . to be committed for a certain time span and then to move on to new territories. Surely one should not fall into the trap of considering art. possibly caused to a certain degree by curators entering the ﬁeld.
In other words. and art collectors asked why such an important exhibition as Documenta11 was launched in an art school context and on a topic unrelated to art. on “Democracy Unrealized”. Mark Nash. Lucia. and what do we generate by what is then written about it? When it comes to research I consider curatorial practice well-situated within an art school context. too. I see an exhibition as a zone of activity.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . T H E E X H I B I T I O N I N K A S S EL I N 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . So Documenta11 was criticized mostly for resembling a seminar for higher cultural education. many for the ﬁrst time encountering contemporary art.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT 44 – 46 UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 20 02 . Several art critics. museums were the places for serious historical research. That is immensely important in order to establish a serious kind of back-and-forth debate and to delve deeper into a topic. rather than educate them from the position of those “in the know. This meant there were eighteen months before the initial scheduled opening date of Documenta11 in June 2002 ( then called Platform_5 ). a place with an everyday experience of this fairly recent academic discourse. Today they are forced to take part in a tourist industry and have started to become fundraising machines in order to survive. it is not a given.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 12 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . One needs a “critical mass” to interact with you if you raise such questions. Some of them wondered how debates on democracy related to the agenda of an art school. What do we generate as curators when we put art works. a space one has to produce. An exhibition of that scale reaches many peopleΩ. it feels quite normal. next to each other. artistic views. An exhibition has to clarify the questions raised and share this process with the audience. In order to focus on the speciﬁcs of these discourses. we considered Documenta as an educational tool. What I shared with Okwui Enwezor and my colleagues from Documenta11 – Carlos Basualdo.4 correlated with the discourses artists invited to Documenta11 were currently exploring. Sarat Maharaj. For example.” Such a “zone of activity” marks the effort one makes to create discursive art – through a curatorial decision. The opening of Documenta11 took place in March 2001 at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna with Platform_1. we are still doing ﬁne. Platform_1 was focused on a series of talks. Those questions indicated that antagonism was already on the rise. Such topics triggered some highly sensitive reactions amongst my colleagues on the faculty at the Vienna academy. Octavio Zaya. and last but not least Susanne Ghez – was the view that Documenta is a knowledge production machine. Automatically one is confronted with criticism of people who share the experience and have deep convictions on the topic. The so-called professionals have to re-encounter art each time they experience new works. H A D A R O U N D 650. workshops etc.constellations are constantly shifting. also because museums are withdrawing more and more from curatorial obligation. but if you debate it in St. we had to go to the places of origin or of relevance for each of the platform topics. Curators are under pressure to Ω P L AT F O R M 5 V I S I TO R S . to debate creolité in Kassel does not make much sense. But since the Documenta11 curatorial team understood this exceptional exhibition format as a form of knowledge production. why not launch Documenta11 at an art academy. Let’s return to the topic of curators connected to art schools. Once.0 0 0 48 C O LO FON . art dealers. O F D O C U M E N TA 11 . and why not view it as an expanded series of seminars? Platform_1 .
N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A .N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 13 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . Exhibitions are not being created to simply satisfy us. troubled.continuously produce art shows that create media attention and attract large audiences. That leaves them with less time for research. stimulated. No wonder some curators migrate to educational institutions in order to do research. a space for discourse that challenges the way we think and the way we perceive the world.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT 44 – 46 UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON . A “good” exhibition leaves one irritated. An exhibition should be able to create a space for critical reﬂection. Aren’t those the exhibitions that stick around the longest?É 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A .
A N E X P R E S S I O N D O E S N OT FI N D I T S P L AC E I N T H E S Y S T EM O F V I S I B L E C O O R D I N AT E S W H ER E I T A P P E A R S . and ﬁnally Biella. India.I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P . and a conception of both knowledge production and research? My contribution to this discussion is based on ‘Future Academy’. setting up a situation of parallel research and co-production between the Städelschule in Frankfurt ( where I was a guest professor) and the art academies in Vienna. P. As a self-reﬂexive investigation that relies on the free will and engagement of students from different institutions and faculties it is necessarily heterological: it appears to disturb the existing coordinates of ﬁne art education by tracing paths across geopolitical locations that throw up earlier colonial cartographies and question current afﬁliations of power and knowledge that are in the process of being re-negotiated. Currently part of Edinburgh College of Art. T H E P O L I T I C S O F A E S T H E T I C S . Future Academy students have acted as the diagnosticians of their own art education. I published Backwards Translation based on the ex-curricula of students. and responses to ﬁeldwork in foreign locations.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT 44 – 46 UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON FA B R I C O F T H E S E N S I B L E I S D I S T U R B E D : A S P E C TAC L E D O E S N OT FI T W I T H I N T H E S E N S I B L E F R A M E W O R K D EFI N E D BY A N E T W O R K O F M E A N I N G S .N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 14 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . Interestingly. and community.Ω Over the last ﬁve years. production.Ω In 1999. and Australia. whilst simultaneously coming to grips with survival. I transited around Scandinavia for eighteen months. Japan. which can only be successful if they view their current condition as closely aligned to that of a future environment for research.. or became so fully involved in it that their ownership of it is unrelenting. . 20 0 4 . USA . Edinburgh. Africa. a process.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . Future Academy does not provide an MA or MFA and. what it has provided for students studying at both large-scale institutions as well as smaller protozoan organisations is a recursive and transitional model for learning how to conduct focused research as artists. Bordeaux. in fact. This research deepened until we decided to make voice recordings in a studio in Oslo and develop another Metronome ΩIT Ω“ T H E N OT I O N O F 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . This has involved generating work with artists and writers through the independent organ Metronome and led to a backstage approach to curating for which the art college has proved to be the most efﬁcient and responsive institutional setting. students who take on Future Academy either leave quickly because they do not understand its apparent lack of course structure. Future Academy characterises my activity as a curator over the last ten years. a curated research initiative set up in 2003 that has been driven primarily by voluntary and non-paying cells of postgraduate students. 71 ‘ H E T ER O LO GY ’ R EF ER S TO T H E WAY I N W H I C H T H E M E A N I N G F U L I S D EB ATA B L E W H E T H ER T H E D E V ELO P M E N T O F M E T R O N O M E W O U L D H AV E B EE N AC H I E V E D I N T H E M I D TO L AT E N I N E T I E S I F I H A D W O R K E D W I T H I N M U S EU M S W H ER E T H E EM P H A S I S O N P U B L I C V I S I B I L I T Y A N D AC C E S S M AY H AV E R U N C O N T R A R Y TO T H E F O C U S O N ‘ C O N C EP T UA L I N T I M AC Y ’ T H AT I C H O S E TO WORK WITH.program particularly with regard to a reﬂective and critical attitude. C O N T I N U U M . economic models.. has no formal legitimacy in terms of ofﬁcial diplomas or exam qualiﬁcations.” J AC Q U E S R A N C I ÈR E . Supported by host institutions from Europe. However. with Michelangelo Pistoletto who was setting up the Cittadellarte and University of Ideas. As a procedure that involves the elaboration of new proposals and their execution. ? CL ÉM EN T I N E D EL I S S Is it possible to map the various skills required for the MA . I N T ER V I E W W I T H G A B R I EL R O C K H I L L . Future Academy has effectively spanned ﬁve continents in its attempt to discern the context for independent research in art in times to come. building up an analysis of the use of rhetoric and the voice in art practice with a voluntary posse of postgraduate students who were studying at the various art colleges. In 2001.
the polymathic academic and cyberneticist who made seminal advances in the translation of systems of knowing and communicating. M Y S U B S EQ U E N T W O R K W I T H ( S EE J A M E S C L I F F O R D . S E C O N D . In particular. In 2002. and the primary focus on translation as a key trope in advanced art practice. I WA S I M M ER S E D I N A S T R A I N O F “S EM A N T I C A N T H R O P O LO GY ” W H I C H N OT O N LY R EF L E C T E D R EF ER E N C E S I H A D I D E N T I FI E D E A R L I ER A S A N A R T S T U D E N T I N T H E W O R K O F J O S EP H KO S U T H . This conversation should be such that not only do the participants discuss ΩOSCAR Ω S EE M E T R O N O M EP R E S S . building a form of “ecological epistemology”. sinister site next to Tate Britain with guest artists while imagining its past and future led to The Stunt and The Queel. LOT H A R D I S C I P L I N E ’ S N A R R AT I V E T R O P E S B AU M G A R T E N A N D OT H ER S . for example. ﬁrst between the London Institute ( now University of the Arts). T H E S T R U C T U R E O F A L A R G E I N S T I T U T I O N R EQ U I R E S C O L L A B O R AT I O N W I T H P EO P L E W I T H W H O M YO U M I G H T N OT H AV E A N Y R E A L A F FI N I T Y. but then denied an afﬁliation to throughout the 1990s. E TC . Clifford Geertz. which I studied alongside contemporary art. Malmö. T H I S I S A R E A L O B S TAC L E . only this time in the US. a thought-structure that is naturally interdependent and interactive with other disciplines. Tate Britain. W I T H A R T I S T S I N S E V ER A L A F R I C A N C O U N T R I E S . Finally. A N D F O R A N A R T I S T I C P R AC T I C E W H ER E T H E P R I M A R Y I S S U E I S H O W TO G E T BY. M I C H A EL B U T H E . yet high-security Royal Army Medical College that had just been acquired by Chelsea College of Art and Design. and their subsequent interpretation. R AC E A N D D I F F ER E N C E . ﬁeldwork studies. Bergen. I published the last two editions of Metronome for documenta 12. W I T H I N A N AC A D EM I C S E T T I N G M O S T O F T H E F U N DA M E N TA L Q U E S T I O N S O F S U R V I VA L H AV E B EE N A D D R E S S E D A N D TA K E N C A R E O F BY T H E I N S T I T U T I O N . M A R C U S A N D C U S H M A N . “A metalogue is a conversation about some problematic subject. I am interested in looking back at the controversial discipline of social anthropology. C O L L A B O R AT I O N S O F C U LT U R A L S T U D I E S R E N D ER E D P R O B L EM AT I C T H E O N G O I N G A R T I C U L AT I O N O F S O C I A L A N T H R O P O LO GY A S A N A P P R O P R I AT E M E T H O D O LO GY F O R A N 8 0 S ’ U N D ER S TA N D I N G O F G LO B A L I S AT I O N . Bateson’s concept of the “metalogue” is relevant here.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 15 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A .Ω I want to revisit the maverick methodologies of twentieth century anthropologists from Margaret Mead through to Michel Leiris and more recently. FI R S T . C O M 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . T H ER E I S A H O R I ZO N O N T H E K I N D O F AU TO N O M Y P O S S I B L E I N T H I S S I T UAT I O N . Copenhagen. A R T I S T A N D C O L L A B O R ATO R I N F U T U R E AC A D EM Y. and Japan. PAU L R A B I N O W . the one convergence I would like to turn to now is the inﬂuence of early ethnographic experiments in research. and later Edinburgh College of Art. B U T O F F ER E D A S EL F . collating materials from Future Academy ﬁeldwork and developing a further constellation of backing and ﬁnance.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . S U S A N H I L L ER . in 2006 and 2007.). and Glasgow School of Art. but the carrier and medium through which I have transported this research in motion that tends to lie somewhat to the side of recognised curatorial models. I developed Future Academy. a publication and 12hour event held in the unconverted Millbank building.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT 44 – 46 UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON T UA ZO N . I’ve come back to Gregory Bateson. Bateson refers to recursiveness as meaning that repeatedly loops back onto itself in a reﬂexive dialogue with its representational boundaries. nine expostgraduates and I set up base for ten months in the derelict. Navigating through this vast.C R I T I C A L A N A LY S I S O F T H E C L I F F O R D G EER T Z . the process of moving and working in different cities and involving local histories and organisations in the project as it evolves. co-funded by art academies in Oslo. Chelsea College of Art and Design.” M E T R O N O M E N O . Metronome is neither vanity publishing nor self-publishing. Bateson writes. Australia. At that point. Using a relational methodology to understand perception. EM P H A S I S E S T H E P R O B L EM O F T H E A R B I T R A R Y C O M M U N I T Y S O O F T E N F O U N D I N AC A D EM I C S T R U C T U R E S : L I M I T TO T H E AC A D EM Y A S A PA R A D I G M F O R E X P ER I M E N TA L W O R K . P R OTAG O N I S T S F R O M T H E B L AC K A R T S M O V EM E N T I N LO N D O N . and was able to knit together institutional support. Once again I set up informal research units. the nurturing of self-appointed communities of artists and researchers who engage in a joint investigation and debate modes of survival.Ω Future Academy and Metronome clearly have many points in common including their unofﬁcial status – you may well ask how Metronome ﬁts into the UK’s Research Assessment Exercise when most productions are without ISBN and Future Academy student cells are not academically accredited? Several convergences exist.publication called The Bastard.11 “I WA N T TO A D D R E S S W H AT I S EE A S A N I N H ER EN T Ω H AV I N G S T U D I E D S O C I A L A N T H R O P O LO GY I N T H E E A R LY 19 8 0 S . and Stockholm.Ω However. P LU S T H E B U R G EO N I N G P O S I T I O N . regulated art publishing and academic norms. turning back onto itself the environment in which I had been given so much conceptual freedom and means of production.
an art academy. The work of the students has a bearing on what I produce. To develop Future Academy as a Batesonian metalogical investigation means pitching it ﬁrst to students. reactivated again and again over the last ten years. As Martin Prinzhorn stated in a conversation at the start of Future Academy. and there are no results. each of us has the authority to retain a sense of individual development. One question emerges here: can both art students and faculty recognise the plurality and therefore the instability of methodological procedures as part of their research activities.” One might say the same distinction applies to the art academy in relation to the museum as a site of new production: art academies necessarily should be places where art is engaged with and expanded in a manner that cannot be achieved in museums and galleries. deregulated. However. rather than becoming reduced to mere providers or teachers? This brings me to the blurred deﬁnitional framework of what we call the art academy. and highlighters together. “S T EP S TO A C E R TA I N M A . at the same time. and then involving them from day one when nothing is known. I would argue that the academy is the site of prelusive knowledge. 1971 . places and people.”Ω This perpetual mirroring exempliﬁes the liminal dimension located between researching something and producing a representation of this process. B AT E S O N . As well as providing a more or less thorough training ground for artistic positions. So my personal question. is the organic result of a groups’ desire to work together and formalise certain experiences and resolutions. to become interlocutors. like any institution. Its artist-members are able to deploy the transformational moment in their research of aesthetic practices in a way that is not possible in any other institution today. but the structure of the conversation as a whole is also revealed to the same subject. Only some of the conversations achieve this double format. following Jacques Rancière’s notion of the “aesthetic regime of the arts”. collaborators.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 16 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . On an elementary level. encouraging us to determine hypotheses together and form the representation of our ﬁndings gradually as they are being pursued. “Art academies should be places where research is done that actually cannot be done in universities because universities have other limits that art academies do not need to have. where I travel to. the art academy necessarily embodies 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL ΩGREGORY A N E C O LO GY O F M I N D ”. a fuzzy logic that is perhaps this institution’s saving grace and ongoing claim to heterodoxy. For the art academy specialises in and nurtures the lead-up time to production through a particular approach to the relation between ideas and things.the problem. and whether I survive professionally. just as it evokes the distinctions and concordances between academic discourses of knowledge production and the eccentric vagaries of art practice.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . has been to ascertain whether the art academy remains a location in which its faculty can experience the ﬂexibility to undertake the prelusive or unknown that deﬁnes independent research and the work associated with it. or is the current conception of competence and accreditation in art education unnecessarily driving both parties towards conformism? Underlying my interests in the art academy environment is the presupposition that it offers an exceptionally individualist.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON . and yet. and heterogeneous location for visioning the future and forming agents in this process.
Life-long learning. one might focus on the academy as a protection lodge. run by an elite orthodoxy with a structure which necessitates it to be non-accessible and non-populist. on strictly maintained interpersonal networks. and Trade. we shift seamlessly into today’s neo-liberal threesome of Globalisation. organised and deregulated knowledge. namely the editorial group. heritage art academy and combined it with more self-destruct. which functions to reinterpret the past and reinscribe as well as redistribute values of competence. “A ‘common’ world is never simply an ethos. concordant accreditation systems. Presenting this notion at the Metronome Think Tank in Tokyo.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . It is always a polemical distribution of modes of being and ‘occupations’ in a space of possibilities.an antagonism. and the Cultural Industries. 11 . Today’s corporate rather than imperial model of schooling and human resource development places emphasis on structures we are all too familiar with. why not use these academies. I’ve opted for the heavy connotations of the historically bound. However. artists’ collectives whose scale is necessarily small and mutable in contrast to the elephantine magnitude of the major art educational establishments that most of us work within. Schöllhammer states. because they have the distinct feeling that they need to speak about these in an audible and visible manner. deﬁnitions usually lead at one point to a certain tension between inclusion and exclusion. virtual learning environments. and more could be developed on this relationship. Here the academy is understood as an editorial group. global market in postgraduate education. and on notions of adherence. 20 07 . The geopolitical incentives of this formulation rise and fall according to demand. here I’d like to focus on the art academy as the tool of cultural expansion. that results from the sedimentation of a certain number of intertwined acts.”Ω ΩIBID. a very stable form. formal and informal. and by extension internationalist policy. It begs the question as to whether the European MFA is actually a neocolonial device ultimately being developed to be implemented beyond Ω S EE 44 – 46 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . W H AT I S TO B E D O N E ?.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON M E T R O N O M E N O . We thought. and an unhealthy reliance on the fees of foreign. PAG E 42 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . entry is based on convocation rituals. For example.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 17 As the name Future Academy indicates. However one chooses to deﬁne the academy per se. From the 19th century mercantile marriage of Empire Education. and are permanently revised and reactivated to reﬂect changing concepts of national and cultural heritage. It has a long tradition in independent media and involves a group of people working over a long period of time on issues which they ﬁnd interesting to translate from one place to another or to present. He writes. TO K YO . vocational training. It is from this perspective that it is possible to raise the question of the relationship between the ‘ordinariness’ of work and artistic ‘exceptionality’. non EU students. Highly ritualised in contrast to more bohemian academies. a powerful. Learning. a shared abode. “The idea of the documenta magazines project is to come back to a form of mobility that is also a form of academy. A more innovative analogy might be the one raised recently by Georg Schöllhammer at documenta 12. these editorial groups and bring them into discussion with one another?”Ω Schöllhammer’s proposition combines the method of an organ such as Metronome with that of a collective research project like Future Academy.
indicating a true mushrooming of short-term working systems. In both locations. the student body increasingly mutates ﬂooding the once singular character of a nation’s art academy with an unstoppable ﬂow of new inﬂuences. I worked ﬁrst in Senegal. latent cultural backgrounds. AIT has managed to remain ﬁnancially self-sufﬁcient and autonomous. I made the decision to curate this investigation away from a super-structure of European super-schools and to focus instead on the current ramiﬁcations of colonial art academies established in the 19th and 20th centuries.the territorial parameters of the Bologna agreement? Meanwhile. Both NGOs could thereby circumvent entrenched bureaucratic problems within the older structures and enable students to develop new methods and productions external of the existing curricula. for example. an NGO co-ﬁnanced by Norwegian state funding. there were different institutional scales at work. but the alternative option of travelling intelligently through different institutional structures with their contrasting value systems. where the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Dakar is actually a post-independence phenomenon initiated by the late president and poet Leopold Sedar Senghor in 1963. Likewise Future Academy would negotiate its way forward with its motherships in London and Scotland. this symbiotic relationship was conﬁrmed once more with the participation of small artists’ collectives in Tokyo that focus on educational formats. the Media Centre of Dakar. was producing documentary ﬁlms with students of Shri. scholars. In February 2003. was working with the Ecole Nationale des Arts in Dakar and teaching new media to students. Their claim 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A .N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 18 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A .N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON . Nevertheless. m-lab. thereby questioning today’s renewed forays into educational expansion. and encourage students from the different departments or schools to take ownership of this research. J. J. and confused expectations. when Future Academy moved to Japan. the urban research group PUKAR (Partners for Urban Knowledge and Research). I was able to set up experimental student cells and with these. A college with a large amount of international students is heterogeneous but not necessarily able to make use of this condition. where art colleges were aligned historically with their British colonial counterparts. Later. AIT. in order to perform a deep transfer of knowledge that can reﬂect and compliment the newly international character of this student body. or Arts Initiative Tokyo ( AIT ). and students on the hypotheses and modus operandi of this research. what I hope characterises today’s globalised art academy is not just the frenzy of standardisation. runs exceptional evening classes on curating and contemporary art.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . Within the ﬁrst six months of Future Academy. a weeklong Future Academy seminar generated a proposal by MFA students to set up a bank. open to a wide range of ofﬁce workers and people whose education may not have included formal art studies. School of Art. For example. Future Academy’s resolution to be voluntary and non-paying led to a deep interest on the part of the students in all locations in economic propositions. and then in several cities in India. such as CommandN. With this modest endeavour. parallel institutional partnerships. As a result of pitches I made to artists. and in Mumbai. devised by social anthropologist Arjun Appadurai with US academic funding.
HE RECENTLY COLLABORATED WITH BENETTON AND ESTABLISHED A LOCAL. Tontines can even have clandestine membership arrangements such that although the savings will rotate from person to person these individuals remain unknown within the group. SENEGALESE MICROCREDIT ASSOCIATION CALLED BIRIMA TO SUP P OR T SM A L L C A M PA I G N I S T H E P O R T R A I T O F A S E N E G A L E S E H AW K ER . and managed to raise a considerable amount for their visit to India. women’s groups. through to smaller cooperatives based on neighbourhood structures. or the acquisition of health and educational infrastructures. B I R I M A . the students continued with their individual work and this institution’s involvement in Future Academy pretty much ended there. Trust and social sanctions encourage a self-selection process with regard to the group’s membership. the Edinburgh cell also applied the Tontine system to their collective ﬁnances. a micro-credit scheme originally devised by the Neapolitan Lorenzo Tonti in 1653. is not monitored by the police or the state. The senior management of the UK School in question immediately quashed the proposal and. AT THIS MEET ING YOUSSOU N’DOUR RAISED THE ISSUE OF THE GROWTH IN OPPORTUNITIES FOR YOUNG PEO PLE AND THE FAST TRACK THAT THE YOUTH PERCEIVED IN BECOMING A MUSICIAN TODAY . so too did the concept of the individual who might operate it: the student on the one hand. and he or she travels worldwide. If the example of legally extraneous micro-credit associations had provided the framework.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 19 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . Tontines can fall within several categories. They come back with theories. the role and value of the artist might lead to a type of international intelligence for which both a black market and a barter system might become operational. whilst apparently run by the Senegalese. from those that are regulated by religious and commercial interests in order to cover ﬁnancial difﬁculties or pay for pilgrimages to Mecca. Key to the Tontine in Senegal has been the cultural and social dimension it employs to ensure that a rotating rhythm of contribution and spending is maintained by each of its members. However. In the context of Future Academy. What have these people done to become successful in the context of an international system? They receive ΩT H E 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A .Ω “ We realise that there are eminent professors of economics in Senegal who often receive travel grants to go to Europe or the States in order to study during the holidays. The fundamental issue with the Tontine is that it remains outside of the law. Likewise. were still closely tied to French ﬁnance.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . In the future.was straightforward: independent thinking required independent economies. O R G S C A L E E N T R EP R E N EU R I A L I N I T I AT I V E S .N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON S E N E G A L E S E M U S I C I A N A N D P R O D U C ER YO U S S O U N ’ D O U R TOOK PART IN THE FIRST FUTURE ACADEMY FORUM HELD IN DAKAR IN JANUARY 2003 . In contrast you have the hawker who has no formal education in economics and who has only attended traditional and Coranic schools. both deﬁned as agents in a transactional relationship. precisely because the nervous accountability of the host institution did not interfere with students’ conception of legitimate research. The model proposed by the Senegalese artists referred back to the Tontine. This hawker enters the economic system too. communal structure developed. the focus on economics did not and it was in Dakar that the most coherent and topical economic model was developed. the organisation of events. As research on this ﬁnancial. it was to be the hawker or itinerant salesman who offered the role model. the one that we call informal. and the teacher or professor on the other. the scheme was activated in the recession of the 1980s as an alternative to the development banks. which. the Tontine provided an experiment in alternative funding systems and actually paid for the Senegalese visas to India so that they could to take part in the Synchronisations forum set up by their Indian Future Academy colleagues. In Dakar. as any further development was voluntary. and constitutes part of the informal economic chain. O N E O F T H E I C O N S U S E D I N T H E P R . S EE W W W .
can we ﬁnd a way to align the informal to the formal sector? This is the predominant economic paradigm that we are trying to work with or break out of. <<<<<‘ S Y N C H R O N I S AT I O N S ’ 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . their ﬁnal conclusion was that at a certain point (postgraduate education) student and teacher need to reformulate the hierarchical relationship of knowledge transfer and enter into a ﬂat zone in which each party recognises the value of their respective input and can effectively pitch and barter their way forward. In this Permeable Academy. Firstly. from prescribed learning structures to voluntary initiatives that do not feature in their academic assessment. looking at all these phenomena in terms of aesthetic values and vectors.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A .”Ω Effectively the Senegalese Future Academy team spent lengthy periods in Dakar analysing informal systems such as the network of beggars. expertise would be handed over to informal economists.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R ΩD I S C U S S I O N B E T W EE N N A L L E AU R O . may fast track them into a professional context. A N D AWA D I O U F AT 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 20 F U T U R E AC A D EM Y ’ S ‘ S Y N C H R O N I S AT I O N S ’ E V E N T I N B A N G A LO R E . and the shifting of competence from illegal mini-cabbing to the acquisition of what in London taxi driver’s parlance is known as the ‘Knowledge’. But also in terms of media and communications. and individual contacts across the world. Moreover. emphasising their interconnectedness: “The informal sector is a little like a bazaar. a tea shop outside the walls of the heritage academies. networks. The hawker is at the heart of our intellectual debates right now. and which they are encouraged to qualify and take ownership of. and illegal taxi drivers with their speed-driven race against death.no support from the government. They exist in the artistic domain too and we should open up this debate in Future Academy. should we look at it in isolation or not? Instead of having one-day economies. 20 05 . I do not think we should look at it in isolation. then I feel we need to take into account that this actually works and investigate its relationship to the predominant paradigm. Indeed. we could ask them how their system functions without basic formal economic principles. It is random. the stock exchange of second-hand clothing. But if they could enter the future academy. and deducing complex performative and presentational modalities from them. and “ traders and crafts people would meet at the shack studio. extensive debates took place between the students in Future Academy on the relationship between informal and formal economies. If we want to analyse one-day economies or smaller more chaotic models where things are done in more ﬂuid ways. If we look at the informal sector and how this ﬂuid state of the economy is run. like a market. the Future Academy team subsequently re-deﬁned this proposal into the ‘Permeable Academy’. describing the mobile architecture of the itinerant salesman as that of a moving directory of comparative studies. and that. loans and student debt towards alternative economic Ω U M A N G . Here we ﬁnd the transition from informal to formal. if anything. from a sole dependency on grants. The formal and the informal do not only exist in economic terms. Secondly. 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 20 05 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . To resume the argument so far: competence in Future Academy is the ability for students to make a series of shifts. and how it is that they still manage to survive (…).N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON E V E N T I N B A N G A LO R E . You don’t enter a pyramid structure. analyses. You go out and ﬁnd your guy and he offers you a mixed bag of things. M A N E .”Ω In India. peripheral academics.
in other words those subjects. and the contemporary crises in man’s relationship to his environment. a polymathic faculty. the processes of courtship. Open Circle. contexts. which stand outside of the course curricula. Raks. and everyday relational activities that attention was directed. It would conﬁrm the value accorded by artists in transactions that introduce service environments into their work from the clinic through to purchases that can be made online. becomes embedded in a structure dedicated to mobile knowledge transfer and deep exchange. travel. and the transnational group of students who work with him or her. It’s a non-prescriptive condition of empathic learning. In 1971 he states that “such matters as the bilateral symmetry of an animal.g.Ω Ω I ’M THINKING OF JOE S C A N L A N ’ S C O F FI N S . RESEARCH REPORT 44 – 46 UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON . the Roaming Faculty structure requires part investment of no more than 20 to 25% of a full professorial salary. With the introduction of a ‘Roaming Faculty’. Senegalese wrestling as mental and physical dialectical engagement).”Ω When we investigated future faculties of knowledge in the art academy. just as they might be interested in hearing from economists or scholars whose research is founded in the cultural idioms and methodologies of non-Western societies. to the shaping of content and the nurturing of transcultural and transdiciplinary positions. Let’s go back to Gregory Bateson who deﬁnes his stance in opposition to what he sees in the 1970s as the increasingly materialist ecology of academic departments. the nature of play. a future art academy would engage in a polymathic economy. researched.. which may be no wonder. peripatetic researcher. the grammar of a sentence.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL ΩI B I D . given the global importance of social interventionism in art practice of the 1990s (from N55. the mystery of biological evolution. the exercise of a particular sport as a model for analysing thought structures (e. The Roaming Faculty model offers selected artists and scholars the chance to develop new work through a chain of interconnected situations at four to ﬁve different art academies. can only be understood in terms of such an ecology of ideas. C O M 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . situating itself between different public audiences. the escalation of an armaments race. daily survival and collective projects. and practices that might be taught. to Superﬂex. research. like our hawker earlier on. or Pukar in India. Art students.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . but it is led by the value attributed to an individual’s research. Moreover. could beneﬁt from a lawyer on immigration and identity issues.approaches with regard to studying. it was to both latent aesthetic processes. that provides for a parallel extension in the work of guest. and developed. the patterned arrangement of leaves in a plant. institutional structures and time frames. Huit Facettes in Senegal. I’d hesitate to call this the seeds of a micro-institutional development but increasingly I feel it may just be heading that way. to name just a few). they argued. It’s a consortium of sorts. a polymathic educational model. and ﬁnally a polymathic understanding of place. In this manner. the polymath. A N D OT H ER P R O P O S A L S F O R O N L I N E S A L E S AT T H I N G S FA L L D O W N . production. The Tontine system that fuels this moving group of artists and 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 21 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . something that one could argue is taking place once again.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R I would like to end on a related issue that provides the basis for intellectual competence: the ﬁgure of the polymath and the concept ‘ of a roaming faculty. for a participating institution. Heterodox combinations of information and skill would inform art practice: for example.
which are shared. methodologies. and thereby to dissolve the idea that following a course will make them into an artistÉ 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . and helps to broker decision-making. Our Roaming Faculty member is the itinerant hawker not only of ideas but also of ways of apprehending.scholars guarantees the on-going low-level costs. and by extension the ability to engage with a form of research that is non-prescriptive from the outset.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 22 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . I’d like to propose three areas of articulation for ﬁne art students: ﬁrst. understood here as the ﬂexible act of idiomatic transference between disciplines. The value accorded to survival and self-organisation leads naturally to a further set of skills: the rhetorical and analytical wherewithal to stake a position as a student player in the revision of educational structures. the predisposition to embark on voluntary non-course or examination-led investigations which enhance an understanding of different methodologies of research.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . So to conclude. secondly. and cultural contexts. rotates ownership between the participating institutions.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON . analysing and evaluating their presence within the next generation of artists and practitioners. To impart this critical approach to the student seems to be essential today. a lucid and production-based interest in economic and symbolic value. and ﬁnally a polymathic approach to knowledge production linked to an enhanced disposition towards translation.
After all. i. In my view.POSING SINGUL ARIT Y JA N V ER W O ER T In the continuous rituals of institutional politics and their related internal closed-door logic. perhaps we should understand the intellectual even as something entirely different from the academic. while art education is about inspiration and creation. Perhaps we should reconsider the legacy of conceptual art and investment in producing intellectual bodies of art. The question is how to talk about ﬁghting institutional rituals in public.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON . and words.e. there is fortunately always someone trying to keep doors wide open. That is not something to be taken for granted. since institutions tend to follow strictly the Kafkaesque dynamics of closing in on themselves.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . We lose the spirit of conceptual art when we actually believe it has produced knowledge. though well-meaning and wellintentioned. ideas. while the intellectual is about the public embodiment of ideas and thoughts. So I must ﬁnd other ways of sharing it. the logic of institutions and the logic of art education are fundamentally at odds. If we want to maintain a critical discourse. Embodiment goes necessarily beyond the academic discourse. Today. This in turn brings to another important issue: the issue of the academy as institution. However. The second issue that worries me is the current prominence of the notion of art as a form of knowledge production. Those different principles imply that people who actually believe in art education will always have to ﬁght the logic of the institution and its continuous institutional ceremonies. Yet it might simply be that we did not understand that conceptual art is about intellectual provocation and the disruption of thoughts. Along those lines of thought. i.e.. that notion is based on a fundamental misunderstanding of what conceptual art practices meant. we do take works from the 1970s seriously and believe they have produced knowledge. That disruption is not necessarily connected to the production of knowledge. even if it depends on the academic discourse to realize its practice. the academic discourse is about evaluation and legitimation. to discovering whether there are new ways for art practitioners to embody provocative ideas and produce novel forms of communication. thereby creating hermetic black boxes which destroy information and burn bridges with the outside world. since that ﬁght is a practice ﬁlled with clandestine techniques. I would rather suggest working on a clandestine manual or instruction book listing all the tricks and all the ways of seduction required to enable art education within institutions not designed to facilitate anything remotely linked to that form of education. but rather to the creation of new forms of embodiment. In fact. I am not in the position to talk about clandestine knowledge in public. the libidinal and cerebral embodiment of an idea.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 23 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . Benjamin Buchloh has argued that the past is the aesthetization of bureaucracy. 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . I do believe that education based on the notion of art as a form of knowledge production creates artists focused on skills such as self-administration and email production. because institutions are innately about legitimation and evaluation.
As producers of artistic subjectivities. ofﬁcially you are the chosen. That perpetuates the false assumption that we are all just institutional people and that is the only reason we are entitled to speak on its behalf. the question of the good life is actually the most pressing issue they raise. Immediately. We sacriﬁce our very lives in that new economy. Currently. teaching artistic subjectivities is teaching people how to put themselves at the mercy of the communication industry. The issue of the chosen is part of a larger discourse in society. I believe one of the most urgent questions facing the art academy is: How do we want to live together? How can we renegotiate the forms of communication that will determine the conditions of our life together? I would like to raise three issues related to that question. Something pointing to the possibility of a different world. At heart this concerns resuming control over our social lives. the biggest growth industry is communication. Therefore. since you have been accepted. One of the major contradictions in a society dedicated to the production of subjectivities is the issue of singularity. When you read Negri and Hardt’s Empire. the most pressing question is in what name or in whose name we want to talk about institutions. the means of social existence. One concerns the ethical-political question of the good life connected to the question of subjectivity or singularity. 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . What do you do when there is more than one of the chosen on a panel or in a room? That is the ﬁrst experience you have when entering an art school. The second is the matter of temporality or the organization of time. that puts us at odds with everybody else. contemporary discussions suddenly create an uncanny moment of closure when we speak of the institution in the name of the institution.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 24 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . How can we avoid becoming public commodities. docile bodies and willing contributors to a new form of immaterial labor? Negri and Hardt explore how we may regain control over our intellectual lives.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . There must be a way of speaking about the institution not in its name but in the name of something else.we can never speak in the name of the institution even when we are speaking about the institution. the one hope we all share is that we are the chosen. something implying a utopian principle. but essentially to wrest back the means of social communication. but suddenly with horror you realize that you are surrounded by chosen ones. They argue that today’s means of production are the means of communication. The last question concerns debt or indebtness. That is what you must do as an artist or an intellectual. I would suggest that it might be necessary to speak about institutions in the name of the good life. we are producers in the new industry of communication. We are works in progress. Let me start with the question of subjectivity. Many times. In the new forms of immaterial labor. Perhaps a utopian world is a world without any need for institutions. the singular ones. as we put our life skills at its disposal. This issue pervades art schools and is almost everywhere in highly individualized societies. Reappropriating today’s means of production no longer implies invading the factories.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON . constantly producing subjectivity.
A strange assembly of creatures ﬁnding a way to coexist that is impossible to explain. In that sense. Bad ways of posing are just imposing. together? In that context. Today. The art of posing as a form of provocation is one of the competencies you gain as an art student. Let’s provoke a provocative community of poses. You learn to present singularity as a form of provocation. the actual problem is that competition is the sole mode or experience of the promise of singularity society offers today. to realize that deeply existential feeling of singularity. it becomes difﬁcult to imagine disrupting that regime of a particular temporality.Books such as the Harry Potter series or ﬁlms such as the Matrix or the Lord of the Rings are all about the chosen. exposing yourself to provoke someone else into reacting to what you are saying. So the pressing question is whether we can really propose an alternative model to competition to realize that collective experience of singularity. How can we be singular. There is no other alternative. That is what you do as a student. the ﬁrst issue deals with the exercise of singularity within the different ethics of a community building. That is a temporality of absolute presentism. except violence. So. assembling people together to eradicate differences among them. One of my ideal models of an academy as a provocative community would be The Muppet Show. because the question of singularity is the most pressing issue every student experiences when entering art school. union. I dream of a provocative community that might exist in an art school as an antagonistic community of provocateurs. The antagonistic community of jealous lovers of solitude might prove provocative. though? I think it should be provocative. with always staying on the beat. I would like to make the distinction between a community of provocation and a community of convocation. but to the need for forms of antagonistic friendship. Derrida’s Politics of Friendship is fascinating.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON . How do you effect the calling. When you always live in the present. but it is also what you do as a teacher. The chosen has to ﬁght within a constellation or competition among others to prove that there can only be one. I think we have an unique opportunity to do that in the art academy. One could consider the promise of singularity not to be a problem as it is a deeply existential experience.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . since he writes about the community of jealous lovers of solitude who have nothing to bring to the community save their love of solitude. I like to think that the academy is a good place to do just that. Often communities are about coexistence. temporality is the regime determining institutional life and also the market. In a literal sense you provoke. However. Good ways of posing are exposing. Temporality is related to the urgency to answer emails immediately. imposing your subjectivity on others. The second issue I mentioned above pertains to temporality or the organization of time. 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . you call upon somebody to articulate his or her position. There are bad and good ways of posing. Usually the chosen becomes approved or legitimized through violence and competition. without constitutions and manifestos. Those bonds. in the loop. allowing the sharing of solitude. are forms of conviviality not pointing to the need for another church or another constitution.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 25 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . not convocative.
That has to do with characters and generations. where the past squashes all presences. On a basic material level. Thus. where people. and with the oblique angles of talking and choosing the subject of teaching. The goal should be to multiply and diversify the inherent temporalities of the academy. as well as in academies in Britain and the United States.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 26 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . Finally. In a welfare 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A .A. like Düsseldorf.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON . beyond material debt.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . In a Nietzschean sense. you need some non-contemporary past potential. when one temporality starts dominating others. and practices embodying different forms of temporality may exist under one roof. People embodying the past also embody a particular form of potentiality. But there are also high-performance academies. This indicates things seriously have gone wrong. you could say that we should have many overlapping. while art students embody the promise of the future. artists must have ﬁnancially viable products ready and out in a gallery. there is also a spiritual and a symbolic debt. where various generations meet. That is a big challenge. I found of course that debt is market-related. debt is at the heart of education. Thus. we need to talk about the third issue mentioned: debt. though at the same time conﬂictual. and to produce a different form of co-existence and conviviality. and futures exist in one building. the academy is a place of many temporalities. presents. While teaching in L. To generate the art of the future.Ideally. I think students all become indebted to certain ideas and to certain principles through forms of education. There are traditional academies. I think the more temporalities an academy has. While teaching in academies in countries where the social welfare state still exists. since one never knows what the art of the future will be. I found that students left school with a debt to the community. Yet there should be a way for different temporalities to coexist in one building. one can only wish and hope that all people will get enough money to pay their loans back. because they have to pay back their student loans. embodied by people who might never be able to properly talk to each other. students have to pay back what they were given. with artists and texts brought in. I was once in a place that was so presentish that the person running the print workshop was ﬁred because of his links to past knowledge.A. ideas. I realized that different institutional structures produce different forms of debt. However. People become involved in serious debt problems when ﬁnancing education. where people embody the present and erase any memory of the past. Very often. Staying in the Muppet Show model. or in a multiple sense of temporalities. the art academy is a place where various pasts. and talking with students there. the better it is. L. Not surprisingly. the potential of the art academy lies in a radical non-contemporary quality. To redeem themselves from that debt they immediately start doing a socially engaged project in order to give back to the community and to do good. After three years in Sweden. The artist embodies both the experience of the past and performs the experience of the present. since they all speak different languages. completely antagonistic and incongruent temporalities. especially in market-driven societies.
because they have received afﬁrmation of the validity of producing art. beyond the material? This leads to considerations of how one might go beyond the institution. by saying you should write for the ghost of Shakespeare’s sister. In the end. I would like to propose dedication as the principle to which we devote our practices of embodimentÉ 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . Let’s go for another form of art. while art could equally be a highway straight to hell? As a teacher. another form of embodiment. but will make a difference. I believe we have to communicate that a certain indebtedness will always linger with both students and teachers at the end of the year. teachers feel enormously indebted to them. All we can do is shift the debt into a mode of dedication by asking to what do we spiritually want to be indebted. So there is a mutual sense of indebtedness. for the sake of her return to the future. in a market-driven environment.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . Teachers are always tricksters because they bear witness to the fact that art is not just a product. On that symbolic level. That is a promise one can never guarantee.state.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 27 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . and perhaps we can never redeem or absolve ourselves completely from this debt. Especially when teaching traditional skills. they become indebted to the idea of the social or society. where she raises that question of debt and dedication. you will remain completely indebted to people whose lives you would have to assure. What other horizon could we open up? What would it mean to be indebted to the good life? There is a beautiful book by Gayatri Spivak called Death of a Discipline. they become indebted to the market. That is a perfect example of shifting debt to dedication. When the graduates go out into the world.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON . teaching can make a difference in helping students to determine to whom or to what principles they chose to become indebted. she asks to what spirit do we dedicate our teaching. to whom do we want to dedicate that practice? Then she refers to Virginia Woolf and that fantastic passage at the conclusion of Room of One’s Own where Woolf speaks to the feminist writers of the future. while you cannot actually do that. How could one ever make that guarantee.
evaluation. Even though the academy may have lost its aura and its disciplinary modus operandus. the artist. They all have different preconceptions about art. Spivak talks about “unlearning”.ROOM FOR THOUGHT SI M O N S H EIK H How could one use ideas from critical art practices within an educational model also connected with accreditation. disciplines are no longer ﬁxed. the art academy has never been so successful as it is today. We speciﬁcally try to mix artists. as a reaction to academicism at art schools today. and art. in trying to let them unlearn what they have learned. or is it art? These objects overlap and seem hopelessly entangled. but also in creating a space for thinking.and what its object of study entails. so we are continuously involved in deskilling. Disciplines once involved in utopian and revolutionary goals also ﬁnd themselves in a crisis. writer ) within the art context. conﬁgure and reconﬁgure them. but also in terms of their socialization and cultural context in general. One might argue that the death of disciplines has been occasioned by interdisciplinarity. and course plans? This question relates to didactic strategies and to what the discipline called teaching means today . our program is interdisciplinary with a focus on what could be called the role of the cultural producer ( artist. artistic practice is always based on a theory. So we can at least say with some certainty that art schools produce artists. the only way to become an artist is through the art school. What then would be our object of study today? Is it the art world. Both theory and practice need a speciﬁc mode of address and a speciﬁc mode of representation. it should also imply a certain lack of rigidity. curators. Yet the lack of an overall ideological goal in terms of utopias could also be blamed for that.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON .N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 28 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . We focus on available modes and how we can deconstruct and reconstruct. not only in terms of their education.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . as Spivak states in Death of the Discipline. Presently. all major exhibitions in commercial shows and galleries demonstrate that exhibiting artists are products of art schools. thinking could break down pre-determined knowledge. However. Currently we have a speciﬁc political horizon. writers and theorists in one master’s program 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . In addition. curator. which is both anti-utopian and antirevolutionary. In spite of the problems with deﬁning the object of study. There is no hierarchical relationship between theory and practice. The curriculum should not only be involved in the production of knowledge. That is a historical shift compared to ﬁfty years ago. Where knowledge could be inhibiting. We consider artistic production as being outside the contradiction between theory and practice. and vice versa. One of the goals of art education could be to try and unravel the triad art world. in the postmodern and postcolonial era. In our view. I am teaching in Malmö’s Critical Studies Program with students from all over the world. artist. But what kind of system are we using? And what is the system we are educating people for? I believe that a MA curriculum should never be entirely predetermined. In that sense.
I understand de-presentation as the disappearance of ideas and imaginations actively or passively de-presented from the world. uniﬁed body. we offer insight into how art is produced. there is rarely a discussion about how art works are produced. Unlike theory courses at the university. constituencies. That was the goal of the museum. i. we also try to discuss how one as a cultural producer one would deﬁne work vis-à-vis the apparatus surrounding production and presentation. In our program. What happens if we try to transform audiences – as many artists currently try to do – into a constituency or a community? What does that mean? With regard to constituencies. you learn how art is received. What does that mean? What is that act of de-presentation? Those questions play an important role in understanding how any representation of the world has certain exclusions rendering things possible or impossible. So there is a profound shift in how to deﬁne a constituency. construct new narratives. as building blocks that can be used in the articulations of the exhibition. but obviously there is a immense difference between production related to art institutions or production related to the audience. and communities? Sometimes these notions are considered synonymous. how can we. since art institutions ( museums ) have a problem with constituencies. An obvious example of de-presentation would be the so-called post-communist condition which is now impossible to discuss or imagine.e. in art we could argue that representation is an act whereby something comes to represent something else. Perhaps that is starting to permeate art education. audiences. However. and potentially? These discussions must revolve around various truths and methods of representation.in order for them to develop a single vocabulary of representation. but you do not learn how ( contemporary ) art is produced. we can create different kinds of understanding and disentanglement. historically.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 29 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . so that there is a certain absence both spatial and temporal. Artworks still seem to come to us as almost readymade. Fifty years ago. through various modes of address.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON . The current composition of the museum’s constituency is very difﬁcult to deﬁne. In art history courses. the bourgeoisie. One model 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . Today. the education of the populace into a national. In the context of an expanded idea of the notion of representation. we could state that in critical theory. There are certain historical models of the art academy that have been handed down to us that could easily be deconstructed. most art institutions are part of the so-called entertainment industry. In those days. presently. In other words. By mirroring those two conceptions.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . though. it was the nation-state. we see a move into the educational space of curators. What is the public role of the artist. new counter-narratives and perhaps even new subjectivities? To and for whom does one speak as a cultural producer? What is the difference in conceptions and locations of various notions among institutions. Even in curatorial programs. it usually means that someone stands for someone else. its constituency could be easily deﬁned based on the interests of the ruling classes. Another question cropping up is what the relationship is between representation and depresentation.
e. this is of course a pre-democratic model. one should not uncritically adopt the university structure. one professor talking to multiple students and deciding just what art education is. since the results of institutional critique.e. and as discursive spaces. students. I believe. the new model of examination. loose their effectiveness in terms of transforming the art environment. one should examine the implementation of its productive features. However. Simultaneously. it is important to shift the notion of knowledge production into what we at the Malmö art school call room for thought.pertains to the idea of the masterclass. and what kind of knowledge. potentially hidden in the academy model. The subjects are all listening to their master’s voice. and how they fail to be equipped for dealing with the current situation of lifelong education and re-education. Therefore. replicators rather than producers of knowledge. are being produced. “If the art school is a teaching machine. The cultural producers we try to create in the Malmö program can also be seen as a counter shift towards these developments within art administration and politics.” That is an urgent issue. and its administrative model. as happens with knowledge in the knowledge industry. how they are inadequately historical. we must ask what kinds of subjects. Where traditional educational systems were part of a disciplinary society. In terms of mode of address. That is the very issue of a certain ma-ness. This is why. Thought has boundaries different entirely from knowledge. That model would merely substitute the system of discipline for the system of control. have been much more profound.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . it is a critique of how institutions work. originally an artistic practice. Rather. universities are often teaching machines. I believe it would be unrealistic to think that the implementation of the Bologna model or system would solve the problems most of us have – I hope – with the historical master classes. based on the sovereign reigning over the subject. As producers of knowledge. now that artists engage with the world. That very model lies behind the implementation of the Bologna process and its type of top-down political dictating on how all art education should be structured. One model I have been interested in is based 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . However. a phenomenon. there have also been didactic historical models that could prove inspirational. we must question the relevance of this model and perhaps look more closely at the university model now replacing the masterclass. That is an inherently hierarchical and masculine subject position. To paraphrase Spivak. One should then try and maintain the open-space freedom of the laboratory. as places through which subjectivity has been formed. For this reason. teaching. That has very little to do with institutional critique as such. i. and not just with themselves. Hopefully it is too difﬁcult to transform thinking into a commodity. on the forefront of our current society and its notion of immaterial laborers. Artists are a sort of social avant garde. The critique and the transformation from managerialism. a nondialogical model of address.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON . Rather one should learn from them as spheres of experience. modules and internalization can only be seen as part of a society of control. i. but now moving to a curatorial practice. while omitting a certain notion of unproductive time and space.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 30 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A .
I always give students the most difﬁcult text ﬁrst as an introduction to theory. one could argue that teaching Critical Studies has a dual function. the room for thought. In terms of adequate. So. didactic strategies and educational models. 14-21 ).N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . and the production of knowledge. all students will be forced to immediately translate what they view as their knowledge of both themselves and the world. Veyne tried to begin from spaces of experience. He found that teaching adults using children’s books caused them to learn very simple things they could not move past. Another inspiration for teaching theory I discovered was on a more pedagogical level in Veyne’s work. In that sense. In principle. One could say. In this model. All one can offer are contacts with gallery owners and the art world – perhaps that is the real teaching. One way to do this is to have a group of participants in a course with very different background. it is actually a degree worthless in the real world. MaHKUzine 2. Why would you ever need a master’s degree 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . there is an interesting text by Andrea Fraser.on Paul Veyne’s ideas. Secondly. we are studying a genealogy of critique. this was one of the ﬁrst re-evaluations of the critical artistic potentials of education while considering the educational space as an artistic space. So he would replace the children’s books with complicated books which then immediately initiated a sphere of production. Currently we are seeing a wild expansion of the market. a bachelor course is a foundation. a book published by Stephan Dillemuth was called Academy ( cf. an introduction into basic skills and disciplines. One can talk about the program’s content. Rather than seeing knowledge as something uncontested. the real socialization. who states that she is not capable of writing a text on teaching. On the one hand. what exactly is the MAlevel? There is an idea that one could study anything all over Europe connected to mobility – which is something completely different from ﬂuidity – a notion popping up in the Bologna process. However.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 31 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . while giving equal value to the experiences and preconceived notions of the student and the teacher. she claims. socialization seems to be the most important way art schools produce their subject of knowledge. the artist. i. I am not only talking about disciplines. as something transmitted solely from the authority of the teachers to the students. but that only seems to result in an unprotected title. what else is there to offer? Fraser’s interesting statement alludes to a possible scenario one must be aware of in a Master’s program. of course. about different parts of the world and different languages. If one cannot offer that form of socialization. In Academy. I am also talking about location and culture. Already in the mid 1990s. within that socialization it is hard not to see that students socialized for the art world are inﬂuenced by the market – as Ute Meta Bauer argued. You could have a Bachelor’s in Fine Art and then a Master in Biology. and probably several people engaged in teaching have had the experience that even second-year students are already showing in private galleries and selling work. and on the other hand we are studying critically. So why do they still need an art institution? Even though the institution gives a degree similar to the university system.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON . an introduction into the art market.e.
If the MA program does not provide socialization. and curating. Of course.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . Finally. in fact. is pedagogy part of the artistic and theoretical practice? Or are these separate things? How could pedagogy inﬂuence your work and your thinking? Could one actually analyze artistic or theoretical work in the light of teaching at a speciﬁc institution? Does one’s work have an institutional color?É 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . That is also how art schools can differ from university humanities departments such as art history or philosophy. That is more inspirational and interesting then listening to an analysis of Foucault’s Order of Things one more time. I would like to explore the topic of the relationship between educational strategies and the research practices of the lecturers. that would be the only reason to get a master’s degree. I am over dramatizing the situation in order to point out what could become the problem with master’s degrees vis-à-vis the market. At our school. it has to provide some kind of critical understanding of what art means. This means that we need a certain ﬂuidity and looseness in our course descriptions and certain keywords which can actually change the program’s content.in art if you are already an artist with your bachelor’s degree? Why should you spend two more years in school? You could want to go for a PhD. and vis-à-vis the marketing of education.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 32 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A .N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON . At the Malmö school we ask seminar leaders. research and the practice of the lecturers are reﬂected in the teaching. to present their research rather than work toward fulﬁllment of a curriculum. art production. who come from a variety of backgrounds such as theory. but – the other way around – is the teaching also reﬂected in the practice of the lecturers? In other words. of art’s placement in the world in addition to its place in the art world.
N E S S MICK WILSON 33 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON . Our common problem is that the demands of a technocratic discourse have become the norm.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . Master’s degrees are awarded to students who: – have demonstrated knowledge and understanding that is founded upon and extends and/or enhances that which is typically associated with Bachelor’s levels and that provides a basis or opportunity for originality in developing and/or applying ideas. So.N E S S´ 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . and formulate judgements with incomplete or limited information. All the other discourses face its effect and consequence. and rediscover what it is that we believe we are doing. in ﬁne art and in the contemporary art practice. So. However. I just want to begin by noting that the ‘Master’s’ degree – across all subjects – has always been one of the least understood and least deﬁned academic degrees. there have been calls from different positions to try to achieve some equality about what it is exactly what the Master’s entails as distinct from a degree at a doctoral level. A series of distinctions is 44 – 46 WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . rethink. Next. often within a research context. independent deﬁnition.U N C E R TA I N M I CK W I L S O N `M A . we have to invent new ways to speak the university. This is what the Dublin Descriptors state. and sociology have. since it has failed to withstand a neo-liberal paradigm. and problem-solving abilities in new or unfamiliar environments within broader ( or multidisciplinary ) contexts related to their ﬁeld of study. For decades. philosophy. universities defend the rhetorics of the 19th century. that rhetoric is exhausted. through various instruments. – have the learning skills to allow them to continue to study in a manner that may be largely self-directed or autonomous. – can communicate their conclusions. At present. In fact. to specialist and non-specialist audiences clearly and unambiguously. and the knowledge and rational underpinning these. I will turn to the question of how the academy has emerged as a paradigm and a recurrent theme within the ﬁeld of contemporary art practice. Within the Dublin Descriptors is the core of the competencies and outcomes required of an MA graduate. – can apply their knowledge and understanding. That third question is connected with the conditions of the university at large. – have the ability to integrate knowledge and handle complexity. ‘The Bologna Conference’ is such an attempt to achieve a common. we are facing problems not signiﬁcantly different from the ones our colleagues in literary criticism.N E S S Is it possible to determine how a MA art curriculum is characterized? What are its appropriate didactic strategies and educational models? I am going to respond to these two questions by working through the general problem of the MA in art education and how the issue occurs within the Bologna process. reassess. we are all forced to review. The related Dublin Descriptors are actually the core statements from the European Union as to what constitutes the speciﬁc Bologna outcomes. but that include reﬂecting on social and ethical responsibilities linked to the application of their knowledge and judgements.
is the question of how the generic descriptors match what we already do within contemporary art education. which on the surface may appear welcome and beneﬁcial. More dangers may be identiﬁed. The support for curriculum diversity. So ’Bologna’ is consistent with making distinctions of ‘kind’ at the same Master’s level. In the competencies. under the heading Making Judgements: Bachelor’s level: [involves] gathering and interpreting relevant data. and a researchoriented Master’s.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . The students appear to be constructed as pre-autonomous actors – they are in search of an agency. Master and Doctorate. also correlates to marketization. The educators within the descriptors appear as secondary ‘resources’ for the realization of the outcomes. – between structured or unstructured Master’s. – the Master’s award can be described without reference to one speciﬁc discipline. – between one or two-year Master’s programs. For example. But wouldn’t we also expect that from a third-year undergraduate student? A primary issue. evaluation and synthesis of new and complex ideas. The advocates of Bologna propose that: – curricula can retain their diversity. Even accepting that ‘Bologna’ does not prescribe curriculum content.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . The introduction of the Anglo-American system of Bachelor and Master degree programs into the European art school system ( as part of the so-called Bologna 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . – between discipline-speciﬁc or multi-disciplinary or even interdisciplinary Master’s. there are other risks within the ‘learning outcomes’ ( or competencies ) model. This move to establish the market economy everywhere is of course the primary agenda of neo-liberal dispensation. a Master student [demonstrates] the ability to integrate knowledge and handle complexity.N E S S MICK WILSON 34 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON . Then one must ask whether it is possible to determine how a Master’s curriculum for contemporary art practice is characterized. Do we not already address some of the generic MA level descriptors in the ﬁrst two to three years of undergraduate study? For example. not on the curriculum. they do not begin with an agency. Doctorate level: [requires being] capable of critical analysis. – between specialist or generalist Master’s. Master’s level: [demonstrates] the ability to integrate knowledge and handle complexity. There are other risks in the ‘learning outcomes’ model. This is an important component related to our fear of overspecialization in the outcomes or competencies model. Is it possible to determine how a Master’s curriculum is characterized? Within the ‘Bologna process’ the focus has been on outcomes. There are other more important risks at stake here. we are required to differentiate our educational products and compete in the new market place of higher education. and formulate judgements with incomplete data.made between Bachelor. however. We can make distinctions – between a ‘professional’ and employment – focused Master’s. the transformative and critical potential within pedagogy is underrepresented or even absent within the descriptors. then.
People got together and spoke about art. program reputations. within the network of fellow competitors for reputational standing. Within our working practice. where the work of the student-artists is unhooked from the immediate productive demands of the market. Similar to all other areas of cultural policy. When and why we give awards. However. we are suddenly required to disclose what it is that we do as art educators. Is it then possible to determine how a Master’s curriculum is characterized? Yes. a certain bureaucratic disclosure moves in. I believe that the open academy rhetoric is somewhat problematic. the open academy will offer more space for risking new and unwarranted forms of art production and more space for thought. A labor market is partly regulated by the guild process of artist-teachers themselves. Today. artist-teachers as ’chosen ones’ jostling for status. Until recently. the reputation-based economy of art education has been displaced by the emergence of managerialism. it is merely that the student imagines the possibility and already starts playing a different game. The essential germ of the open academy model is that in an educational setting. So we have two kinds of market threats: i Higher education as such has become a more intensely marketized system in general. Confronting this view. Part of the problem here is that this move is effectively shuttering the openness we have come to understand as being the potential – not always delivered – of the art academy model.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . we have the sense that the market is making inroads into education. We all participate in the reputation-based economy in the form of e-ﬂux. of course! But the really important question relates to purpose. the cultural capital and the ascription of reputational standing was something endemic to a community of discourse. and so on.N E S S MICK WILSON 35 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON .process ) seems to point towards the creation of open academies with an unstable sense of identity rather than towards the consolidation of art schools as educational institutions with regimented schedules. It is not necessarily the case that the art market appears on the doorstep. since the annual student presentations and the graduate shows have become hunting grounds for gallerists and curators who are tripping over each other in their insatiable craving for talent. we had a labor market governed by reputation.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . So. We have institutional reputations. The reputation-based economy within art education also blurs into its larger counterpart within the contemporary art world. there is even a third type of ‘market’ beginning to emerge: the reputation-based economy of art education. but driven by the discursive community around the extended ﬁeld of contemporary practice. and how we do our jobs within the scenario of handing out awards. ii The art market colonizes the imagination and orientation of the student-artist within the academy. Now the criteria for recruitment and promotion are no longer primarily based on reputation. The question is whether the transformation from a place of creative freedom to marketplace is good for the quality of the art academy. the advertising pages in Art Forum. What is our purpose? What do we need to disclose? What is it that we do? To what end and with what purpose are we 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . constructing one’s curriculum vitae.
to enable the ﬂow of other discourses. Everywhere in the journals. – that we are trying to bring an offering to the market place. 3 . ‘We’ art educators. but rather to facilitate.N E S S MICK WILSON 36 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON The meditations on and experiments in alternative academies consistently return to the quandary of ‘emancipatory practice’. The future model of the art school is clearly something engaging the imagination and energies of the international contemporary art scene. Cyprus and unitednationsplaza theme. 2 The ‘academy’ debates are troubled by the possibility of the educator’s ‘bad faith.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . but which in some way enable. 1 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . troubling questions of education in general. How do you work within institutional structures. We want to create structures which do not themselves exhaustively prespecify what will happen. Manifesta’s Notes for an Art School. I want to expand a bit on what I believe is signiﬁcant. – that we are trying to establish credibility with our funders. the biennials. The tension that might be painted as a showdown between Ranciere’s ignorant schoolmaster and Bourdieu’s sociologist king. Frieze’s ‘Art schools then and now’. in the academies themselves. not to control. the question of art education is being asked and rehashed again and again. There are three observations I would like to make in light of these developments in the larger ﬁeld. not to determine. the fairs. different dispensations of power? How do you work within this and still address questions of emancipation? These are standard. ‘Pedagogy’ was one of the three leitmotifs of documenta12. to questions of ‘autonomy’ and ‘agency’. ArteContexto’s recent dossier on ‘teaching visual arts’. not to describe. ‘protoacademy’. and Frieze Art Fair’s recent round-table discussion on art education ( October 2007 ). What is it that our work does? What is it for? It is as if the curator conversation died. and the art education conversation leapfrogged over it. The quandary of ‘emancipatory practice’ – how to enable ‘autonomy’ and ‘agency’. and practices. These are three generally recurrent features. – that we are doing it because there is some impulse to regiment and shutter the openness. Here the question of art practice and the notion of autonomy come together. Then part of what that structure must be able to do is to entirely dismantle and change. hierarchies. Possibly the best articulation we have of our aspiration as teachers is not to dictate.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . but they really recur strongly throughout all these different experiments. and autonomous agencies. It is also being answered and tested in many different ways . – that we wish to provide a robust and critical learning environment. Cork Caucus.but not so visibly.’ The ‘academy’ projects and debates too often fail to address the general state of higher education in favor of a narrow focus on the speciﬁcity of art education.describing and [discursively] constructing the Master’s program or indeed any program? The possibilities are: – that we are doing it simply to mimic an alien system. I would suggest.
and. undisclosed. Let ‘us’ not disavow authority. the pure ﬂow of uninterrupted. Accountability to each other – to our peer networks and our colleagues less fully embedded in the art academies – or those who are not there at all. Consider the petty cruelties and rivalries of teachers for the affections of their students. It is authority not subject to challenge and critique – when it is not answerable to others – which is most troubling. with 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . the brackish ground upon which our agency is based. Consider the classic power struggles of academics for their tiny territories. as long as you do it within this framework. the inability to speak honestly and openly about contradictory consciousness can lead to a destructive desire for “pure” political positions.But we should still be troubled by this. how we ( believe we ) do it.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . Let us accept our authority and our considerable agency and open it to accountability. What we need to do is to revisit the possibility of resisting this. with conﬂict and competition for resources. They say. ‘Living with contradictions is difﬁcult. we’ll just sit back. Consider also the desire for ‘pure’ conviviality. Of course. This will bring us not to pure positions but to messy human situations with complex agendas. dialogical exchange. you’re the experts. The ﬁrst thing you learn as a student in the academic environment is the ﬂow of inﬂuences in the room when teachers and students meet. The other part is listening to others when they suggest to us that we might be mistaken –that we mis-recognize ourselves as the ‘subject presumed to know (themselves ). Authority is not in and of itself ‘bad’. Part of that accountability is mutual disclosure: what we ( believe we) do. I am worried when people seek pure positions. Think about what the national governments are doing in the domain of higher education. Consider Bourdieu’s early lesson on the cultural indoctrination of students not by what is spoken. even artist teachers should perhaps not seek purity and an attempted disavowal or refusal of authority. why do we think we can do it with our students? Teachers.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . The disavowal of authority is a classic strategy of authority.’ This is why we might be a little bit cautious of our claims to realize moments of pure conviviality. the mucky – the muddy wet ground. but by what goes unspoken. and why ( we believe ) we do it.’ Part of this is to reﬂect upon our desire to be loved by our students and to be respected by our peers. someone who says they have shed their authority is not so easily challenged for their exercise of that authority. to militant posturing and internecine battles with one another that ultimately have more to do with individual subjectivities and self-images than with disciplined collective struggle for resources and power. and say go on. The American cultural studies practitioner George Lipsitz says. un-interrogated in the ‘disciplinary’ conversation. If we cannot do it with our colleagues. you know what you’re doing. We should perhaps rather seek to cope with -and reﬂect upon this ‘coping with’ – the impure. of another type of accountability. The problem with this particular mode of accountability we are being asked to adopt is precisely the technocratic mode which is determined at a central governmental and European level.N E S S MICK WILSON 37 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON . especially for intellectuals and artists employed in academic institutions.
N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF The ‘academy’ debates are troubled by the possibility of the educator’s ‘bad faith. it is unlikely that some of the other changes would have taken place. write criticism. 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . Those who cannot.. The latest of these transformations is the reconditioning of the university as a fully and explicitly instrumentalized space of economic. are ( a ) the universities got much larger.. but it is a promise that we may not fully be able to redeem or honor. The ‘university’ and the entire ﬁeld of ‘higher education’ – post. Calhoun says about these challenges. Those academies arising outside the university setting came into being because of imperial. Why is it that the art world – the market. secondary. Jan Verwoert said that ‘we’ promise ‘it makes sense to make art’. They generated spaces of experimentation and openness AFTER the market outside had enabled a non-statemandated private/public-cultural sphere. ( b ) that more or less full-time scientiﬁc and engineering research components of universities got much larger. – have undergone a series of profound transformations in the last two centuries.” Camnitzer presents an extreme position on this question of ‘bad faith’ – that we already know that what we actually do as artist educators is not what we say we do. ‘we’ have recognized a need for a new way to speak of the university which can challenge the un-challenged authority of the neo-liberal speciﬁcation of the university as factor of industry and nothing more.. the festivals– opened the question of the academy? Were ‘we’ a little reluctant to do so? 2 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . The question of ‘bad faith’ was referenced earlier in the discussion. There are some general points to adduce ﬁrst. the inevitable corollary of seeking ‘pure’ positions for ourselves. what we have here is a pyramid scheme. nationalist. [. They will ﬁnd some other means. (c ) that the higher education sector got much larger. and social reproduction attuned to the ﬂows of global capital. It is the market that emerged 48 C O LO FON . The serious elite will no longer look to the university as the primary space to construct and to reproduce their elite status. I would suggest. For some time now. In the face of these instrumental and technocratic imperatives. tertiary etc. cultural. the relationship of higher education to elite formation changed. The issues.troubled workplaces where institutionalized behaviors already cause many ‘closures’ of dialogue. mercantilist and other vested interest arguments. teach. do. the rhetoric of the university – the ‘idea’ of the university – simply fails to be persuasive. “The [. The independent art academies have a different history. So these institutions were founded on instrumental logics. in a nutshell. The question of ‘bad faith’ is. This is perhaps the trickiest issue to tackle.. Those who cannot teach. on means-ends rationale. ‘Without a dramatic change in institutional and sectoral size.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . and ( d ) that partly as a consequence.] Basically.] mistake is promising by implication that a degree in art will lead to economic survival after graduation.N E S S MICK WILSON 38 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT 44 – 46 UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 3 The ‘academy’ projects and debates too often fail to address the general condition of higher education in favor of a narrow focus on the speciﬁcity of art education. Remember the general suspicion of art school teachers: Those who can. the magazines.” ( Calhoun 2006:3 ). It will not work.’ Consider Luis Camnitzer’s ‘Fraud and Education’ in the recent issue of ArteContexto.
. So not Bologna.maybe change it a little..N E S S MICK WILSON 39 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON came to this.. let us to see it. and PHD. more interesting problem or pre-occupation and tell us about it.. and so on. That is where it originated. I would argue. the rhetoric of the ‘open’ – just as the universities’ rhetoric of the ‘idea’ – has now exhausted itself. that we were not already in a position to be the bearers of the public disclosure of what art educators do. and areas of action: a standing reserve of metaphors. focus. I suggest. and discourses. It would be unfortunate for us under these circumstances to then shout hands off while we take every other discipline. It’s a little bit yours now if you want to join. materials.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A .. we’re different. though. not within the academies. All aspects of the life-world are taken as its legitimate concerns.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A .or ﬁnd a better. What I have presented is precisely the kind of presentation that I would make to MA students in the ﬁrst few weeks of their studies. We could not possibly be comprehended – even partially – within someone else’s discourse of means-ends or ‘learning outcomes’ or `the sociology of professions or ‘knowledge’. we should not be incensed simply by the fact that there is a bureaucratic imperative to adhere to a framework of BA . is a conditional ‘yes’. I think this is a very urgent matter for us. maybe not. You can’t include us in your conversation about BA’s and MA’s and PHDS. We should examine how it is that we 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . We need some new rhetorics of becoming to negotiate and challenge the dominance of the technocratic way of speaking in the world. post-pop. The answer.my [institutional] horizon is not yours.. We seem to have come along way off track on our question of the MA curriculum and appropriate teaching practices. not 2010. profession and occupation as grist for our mill.”.on the fringes of entrepreneurial capitalism that generated the spaces for avant-garde experiments which later became the paradigm for the open academies. show it to us. How it has been left to the policy-makers and ceded to practitioners on the margins of the academy or outside the academy altogether. post-minimalist era – has the characteristic of wishing – or at least appearing to be willing – to thematize everything given in experience... If we are really asking today whether we can we make a clear distinction in the education of artists among these levels. Where is this rhetoric to be found? Contemporary art practice – as it has emerged in the post-conceptual. but what we are already doing. We’re pure. How we were not the bearers of that conversation into the public domain. and still retain some unsquandered potential. I would say “Welcome to ‘our’ uncertain world – the world of art educators. But ‘we’ are always negotiating some kind of balance between the requirements of ‘regulatory’ ‘instruments’ and the embedded human situation of our contingent practicesÉ . to actually bring that into the public domain. I think here is a lot more. MA . For these academies. My presentation may seem far too generalized to be of any real value in helping to frame a particular MA program or deal with ‘urgencies’.
15-20. A C E R TA I N M A . ( 1988 ) T h e Mas t er’s D e g re e.N E S S MICK WILSON 40 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT Ver woer t . 4 . Ga rber.REFERENCES 3 – 4 EDITORIAL Ca m n it zer. 44 – 46 UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON . ( 1970 ) A c a d emi c D e g re e Str u c ture s: Inn o vat ive Approa ch e s . 94. A r teConte x to16 Mad r id: A r tehoy. N . pp. ER IC D igest Wash in g ton: ER IC C lea r i n g house on Hig her Educ at ion Spu r r. L ipsit z. Ja n ( 200 6 ) L essons in Mod es t y: T h e O pe n A c a d emy as Mod e l.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y Glazer. in Met ropol is M: E x pa nd i n g Ac ademy. 80 . It hac a: Cor nel l Un iversit y P ress. JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . ) Cultural Stu di e s / Polit i c al T h e or y. pp.. pp. Jud it h S. in Jod i Dea n ( ed . P r i nceton NJ : P r inceton Un iversit y P ress. Berkeley : Ca r neg ie Fou nd at ion for Adva ncement of Teac h i n g. George( 2000 ) “Ac adem ic Pol it ics a nd Soc ia l C ha n ge”.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . Stephen H.96. P r inc iples of Refor m i n Deg ree St r uc t u res i n t he Un ited St ates. Lu is ( 200 7 ) Frau d an d E du c at i on. Ma r jor ie ( 2001 ) A c a d emi c Ins t in c ts.94 .
i. In fact. Stating criticism is the ﬁrst move. articulation. autonomous. art as reﬂective criticism or art as an avant-garde logic of negativity has ended in a free-ﬂoating game.e. similar to playing chess. Let me elaborate on the concept of anthropological laboratory. the two polarities of creativity and reﬂection need to be involved. In this context. and questions.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . independent. is very much alive. reﬂection in the mode of an anthropological laboratory. Both the social function and the cultural function of art have been identiﬁed with being critical where being critical refers both to the institutional and the traditional. implying an overview of a range of positions while identifying conﬂicts. current art is relevant and important only because it is connected to the anthropological laboratory as a space for reﬂection. thoughts. i. reﬂection is a form of applied thought. feedback. implying a continuous reservoir of metaphors. it is interesting for most artworks to demonstrate the stages. education and the research environment. However. connected with working on meanings and images capturing life. One is criticism. Art as artistic research seems to be the major cultural value and the major relevance of art today.. art should to be free. is crucial so that making art 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . assess the positions. Rather than being merely critical. a critical confrontation with other voices. Clearly. and description. I understand creativity as the pleasure of invention. Conversely. reﬂection is now connected with curiosity and the sense of ﬁnding the gesture. the sense of possibility per se. the work. Art asks for a certain environment in which to establish an artistic production and to organize that production. since isolating works of art is rather unproductive. Conversely. problems. whereupon artists then evaluate what is needed to build on their position. In this sense. In this mode. over the last ﬁfty years. critical. the major accent has been on reﬂective art practice as criticism. and then decide what is relevant to make. I would like to distinguish between two different reﬂective practices. the metaphor. the statement. the process is very important.e. From this perspective. During the process of production. then.A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L AB O R ATOR Y B A R T V ER S C H A FFEL In thinking about art. the variations. art is working on all aspects of life. and the desire for the new as inherent components of art and artistic production. and images. is connected to the phenomenon of art as research and the project of transforming institutions of art education into research institutions. Artists need to understand the artistic ﬁeld. since it is connected with meanings and images as phenomena guiding people to an understanding of what it means to be here and now. and also radically new. The other form of reﬂection is connected with art working on meanings and images. Reﬂection.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL 41 RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON . Reﬂection as criticism is a tool for discovering how one can make a move in an artistic or creative project. art as a reﬂective research practice. The critical mode of reﬂection is different from reﬂection linked to formulation. and how the ﬁnal form has been chosen.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . That form of reﬂection could be called reﬂection in the mode of an anthropological laboratory. and the image that captures life. meanings.
so they do not assume the responsibility of organizing work on the visual culture. Yet instead of developing into an institution where art could be deployed as an instrument to reﬂect upon culture. we need an organization and an academic management of freedom. it is disturbing that this type of artistic research fails institutional frameworks. private. Fortunately. As a criterium for this. seem to be free of its constraints. Currently. therefore. That led to ignorance of ﬁlm and photography. Here art addresses both art production and an audience interested in working on meanings and images a society could adopt. but even more so in university education. Thus. In other words. in a few minutes you can understand what the artist intends from a year of concentration and production. Therefore.itself becomes part of a complex process. However. Derrida once claimed during one of the famous Any Conferences on Architecture. the problem is that reﬂection in the mode of the anthropological laboratory seems to be hidden in the art world. the need for a laboratory. there are places that do not belong to academia and. In fact. all the management positions and decisions involve people with an academic background rather than professional managers. and ideological realms. What is the danger of introducing a research curriculum into art school environments? That danger is connected to the issue of 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . since the discourse produced for the outside world and the image the art world creates of itself are not about reﬂection.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . whereas the spectator can experience it in just a few minutes. that what we need is more preparation and more improvisation. The need for reﬂection.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . universities are at least 90 percent self-governed. In Belgium. communication is immensely important. the universities worked with a 19th century cultural map. universities are guilty of neglecting both cultural production at large and focusing on a living culture. When art is research in the sense of working on meanings and images as a form of reﬂection in an anthropological laboratory. the universities are transformed into industries of knowledge. there is interest in cultural production in commercial. That is the importance of topical art. during the 20th century. The work of art has to be addressed somehow in the community of people working on meanings. there is what I would call the degree of condensation in the work of art. The miracle of an art work is precisely that the artist spends a year creating it.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL 42 RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON . art is of course a public matter. Indeed. makes reﬂection a goal of art education. belonging to the culture in an anthropological sense. is shunted onto art education. However. Therefore. academic research in the universities fails to transform and. I indeed think we need more preparation and more improvisation not just in art education. Thus. the art world’s favorite discourse is about trends and the art market. be it visual or not. Of course. The great gift of cultural production is that the entire process of creation is condensed in a transmittable form. thus. The question arises as to how one could introduce the idea of reﬂection in the mode of an anthropological laboratory into art education. It is the responsibility of the academic staff to include more preparation and more improvisation while creating a managed freedom and liberated space for artistic research.
a research program in an art institution – let’s say about Lacan’s gaze – will result in two interventions. the only topic for artistic research to work on is art itself.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A .unresolved art-related research problems. one should be able to manage a variety of issues. and content. a statement and an exhibition called Lacan’s Gaze. In addition.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL 43 RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 48 C O LO FON . since artistic research fails to connect with institutional frameworks. In the academic realm. But how many responses will there be? How many people really read that type of research report? I believe that continuity in artistic research is a problem. research areas are deﬁned. That is the only context. art as reﬂection in the mode of the anthropological laboratory clearly necessitates new forms of collaboration with various disciplines and institutions outside the art world and outside art educationÉ 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . it is clearly understood how to articulate. However. At the start of research trajectories. content-wise. document. evaluate. Thus. artistic research could possibly have. What will be the focus? What will be the subject of reﬂection? What is relevant? How does one deﬁne research programs? How does one formulate decision and evaluation procedures? What will be the goal of the outcome of the research process? In an academic structure.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . Those problems mainly emerge in the beginning and at the end of an artistic process considered research. Then what? The research might be a document to be sent out into the world. and discuss the end product and how to connect it to the academic discourse.
in contrast to scientiﬁc knowledge production. The establishment of the Utrecht Consortium is inspired by the 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . These two activities used to be considered part of professional domains such as art criticism and curating. Each artistic research project.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . In this debate. the Utrecht organizations intend to establish an enduring network comprising the art institutions and the Utrecht School of Art while focusing on dynamic exchanges of views and expertise in the context of knowledge production. the artistic practice is considered a researching activity whose outcome. i. by Manifesta 5’s focus on the academy in 2006. such a model would be impossible to create. Yet the institutional consequences of this debate have been subject to extensive reﬂection. That situation made the Utrecht Consortium ( a research collaboration as of January 2008 with MaHKU/Professorship Artistic Research and Utrecht art institutions ) decide to map out the current practical and theoretical issues and developments in further detail. the Utrecht Consortium as a network of research activities mapping out the outcome of presentations based on the production of artistic knowledge.. In these international discussions. Until now. What does it mean for an exhibition space in 2008 to develop a policy directed towards knowledge production? After all. today’s artistic research attitudes have brought reﬂection and theory to the center of attention. In order to deal adequately with this novel situation. however. That expectation seems to relate to the most recent debate in the world of visual art. Conversely. artists are expected to fulﬁll the role of art critic and curator themselves.e. Institutions participate in international discussions on the repositioning of academies and cultural institutions as started by the exhibition Academy in the Museum for Contemporary Art ( MuHKA ) in Antwerp and the Van Abbe Museum in Eindhoven. a methodology manifesting itself in artists’ texts and exhibition forms focused on knowledge production. one talks in a rather abstract way about art as a form of knowledge production.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . the exhibition models are still based on “alternative” ( non-museological) models from the 1980s. and by Documenta 12’s educational program in 2007.e.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 44 48 C O LO FON . Today. artistic knowledge production does not have a ready methodological model. However. This was a period where reﬂection and theory did not play a major role in the world of visual art. This novel situation has immense consequences for how one approaches competencies in the profession of art. One of the signiﬁcant problems the Utrecht Consortium has found is that today artists are expected to be able to ( theoretically ) contextualize and present their work in addition to expanding their artistic profession. one argues.. the situation of art institutions is rapidly changing all over the world. requires its own methodology. the debate on artistic knowledge production mentioned above. i. similar to that of scientiﬁc research. In principle. is able to contribute to our knowledge about the world. the paradigm of art education has been rooted in the artistic situation of the 1980s.RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM Today. in light of the emancipation of artistic research.
Unique to the London Consortium is the establishment of a “virtual” organization depending on the knowledge and ( limited ) input of the Consortium partners. beta. the Science Museum. occurring in a location 44 – 46 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . and international levels while sharing networks. models of presentation enabling both artists and exhibition spaces to adequately deal with topical situations regarding the position of visual art while clearly communicating with the audience. Through this ﬁrst case study. The professorship in Artistic Research seeks to employ the Utrecht Consortium project and its outcome to spark an urgently required discussion in the Netherlands on how art academies could prepare students for a knowledge-based practice. a platform has been created without the need for ofﬁces and staff with minimum overhead costs. a collaboration among four institutions for education and art – the University of London. (More about that research will be reported in greater depth in MaHKUzine 6 ). The results of this research will be published as a series of “best practices”. Kopelman explores whether the University Museum might be presented as the optimum location for exchange of knowledge between art and science. In developing adequate presentation models in the form of both exhibitions and texts. With that. regional. ICA . and gamma sciences. exploration of methods of presentation speciﬁc to today’s visual art as a form of knowledge production. Additionally. That research will also focus on creating a more natural collaboration of the Utrecht School of Arts and various departments at Utrecht University. young artists will be able to enhance their communication with a variety of audiences.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 45 48 C O LO FON alien to visual art. Using the historical collection of the Utrecht University Museum. the production of artistic knowledge is the theme of various programs and projects to be initiated in 2008 and 2009 through the . Thus. and the TATE – offering joint artistic research programs. Fine Art graduate students and young artists in the area will also be able to distill tools for critical reﬂection from the research and its results. In addition to the Consortium partners and professionals in the ﬁeld. Those issues could easily be expanded to local. The professorship will also hopefully be able to contribute to an international debate about the speciﬁcity of artistic knowledge production and its relationship with more traditional forms in the academic distinction of alpha. The Consortium activities will offer them possibilities to develop reﬂective capacities ( competencies ) crucial for presenting their own practice.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . the Utrecht Consortium intends to expand its views on the strategy of artistic presentations and exchange of knowledge as such. the Utrecht Consortium intends to be ﬂexible. An initial example of such collaboration is artist Irene Kopelman’s PhD research study within the context of the Utrecht Consortium. but still a structural collaboration exploring issues in the context of artistic knowledge production from the exhibition programs and their young artists at the art institutions. Another core issue of the Utrecht Consortium implies the issue of the signiﬁcance and position of an art academy in the context of the topical knowledge debate and its implications for didactic perspectives. At the core of the Utrecht Consortium is practice-based research.e. i.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A .so-called London Consortium.
Topics will deal with reﬂective methodologies and presentation strategies.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . The professorship Artistic Research will also organize a yearly cycle of Utrecht Research Lectures. Internationally known artists will give lectures in the context of the theme of Artistic Knowledge Production based on their own research-based practice.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH lecturers the day following the public lecture.unique collaboration of the Consortium partners. These models and their context of artistic knowledge production will be discussed in professional master classes and workshops producing a broad spectrum of knowledge and insight.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT 44 – 46 UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 46 48 C O LO FON . Each invited speaker will also give a master class at the Utrecht School of Arts for MA Fine Art students and/or be involved in an expert meeting with 3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A . ( HS )É The Utrecht Consortium is also made possible by the ﬁnancial support of the Ministry of Education and Culture ( Sia-Raak ) 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . The survey of “best practices” and its relevant models of presentation will be realized and published.
N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A .3 – 4 EDITORIAL A C E R TA I N M A .N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL RESEARCH REPORT 44 – 46 UTRECHT CONSORTIUM 47 48 C O LO FON .N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A .
M A H K U zi n e 5 3 – 4 EDITORIAL JOURNAL OF ARTISTIC RESEARCH SUMMER 2008 A C E R TA I N M A . DUBLIN . PA R T I C I PA N T S UTE META BAUER.N E S S MICK WILSON 41 – 4 3 A N T H R O P O L O G I C A L L A B O R AT O R Y BART VERSCHAFFEL WEBSITE W W W. LECTURER CRITICAL STUDIES. MIT. CAMBRIDGE MA WILLEM DE GREEF. ROTTERDAM MICK WILSON. TOGETHER WITH THE HELSINKI SCHOOL OF ART. MALMO SCHOOL OF ART BART VERSCHAFFEL. DIRECTOR FUTURE ACADEMY. EDINBURGH SIMON SHEIKH.NL 3 3 – 4 0 U N C E R TA I N M A . M aHK U /M A EDI TORI A L DESIGN EARN MAHKU IS PART OF THE EUROPEAN ARTISTIC RESEARCH NETWORK . GRADCAM ( DUBLIN ). DIRECTOR SINT. BRUSSELS CLEMENTINE DELISS.BAKKERL A AN 50 23 – 27 P O S I N G S I N G U L A R I T Y JAN VERWOERT 28 – 3 2 R O O M F O R T H O U G H T SIMON SHEIKH 3 5 8 2 VA U T R E C HT THE NETHERL ANDS MAHKUZINE@MAHKU. SLADE SCHOOL OF ART. MALMO SCHOOL OF ART. PROFESSOR PIET ZWART INSTITUTE. BA LK EM A ARJEN MULDER B I B I S T R A AT M A N FINAL EDITING A N NE T T E W. DEAN GRADCAM. PROFESSOR OF PHILOSOPY.4 7 2 8 14 – 22 I S I T P O S S I B L E T O M A P … ? CLEMENTINE DELLIS C O N TA C T MAHKUZINE U T R E C H T G R A D U AT E S C H O O L O F V I S U A L A R T A N D D E S I G N INA BOUDIER .LUKAS ACADEMY. LONDON AND VIENNA SCHOOL OF ART.N E S S 5 – 6 O P E N I N G : A C E R TA I N M A . DIRECTOR VISUAL ARTS PROGRAM. BA LK EM A L ANGUAGE EDITING JENNIFER NOL AN T R A N S L AT I O N S GLOBAL VERNUNF T DESIGN CHRIS T I A A N VA N D OK K UM. UNIVERSITY GHENT JAN VERWOERT.N L RESEARCH REPORT 44 – 46 UTRECHT CONSORTIUM EDITORIAL BOARD HENK SL AGER (GENER AL EDITOR) 48 C O LO FON 48 A N NE T T E W.M A HKU.N E S S WILLEM DE GREEF M A H K U zi n e JOURNAL OF ARTISTIC RESEARCH H O S T E D B Y T H E U T R E C H T G R A D U AT E S C H O O L O F V I S U A L A R T A N D D E S I G N 7 – 13 U N D E R P R E S S U R E U T E M E TA B A U E R ( MaHKU ) I S S N : 18 8 2 .