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