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