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Artistic re-appropriation and reconfiguration of the medium's milieu Drawing upon Jacques Rancire's and Bernard Stiegler's conceptions

of medium as a milieu the paper will seek to address the question of the political aspects of the aesthetic in relation to the notion of medium. According to Stiegler the human being is an accidental being originally in need of technical prostheses and therefore fundamentally constituted and conditioned by technics. The human being is vulnerable because it is a being that continuously evolves through processes of technical exteriorization that necessarily involves processes of interiorization and appropriation of technical prostheses and procedures (e.g. speaking, writing, painting, performing, installing etc.). The human milieu is symbolic, which means that it is a milieu of exchange where exclamations [...] make signs circulate, and that it is a milieu of sign-making where each one participates in symbolic life. Such is the process of trans-individuation by which we co-individuate in symbolic milieus, which are associated milieus. However, the associated milieus have become dissociated. The industrial division of labor has meant that there are producers of symbols and consumers of symbols who do not participate in the elaboration of meaning, causing these symbols to lose their meaning." (The Tongue of the Eye: What Art History' Means", p. 230-31). According to Rancire artistic means' are the means of participating in the configuration of a specific milieu. Rancire also considers the medium as milieu: The milieu in which the performances of a determined artistic arrangement come to be inscribed, but also the milieu that these performances themselves contribute to configuring." (What Medium can Mean", p. 35-36). The paper will interpret and discuss artistic endeavors to re-appropriate and reconfigure conservative symbolic orders and media milieus that have become dissociated in relation to selected contemporary works of art by Thomas Hirschhorn, Alfredo Jaar et al. Jacob Lund, Associate Professor, Dept. of Aesthetics and Communication, Aarhus University, Denmark