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