Interruption as Dissenting Gesture
In this exposition I investigate the tactics of interruption as methods of engaging with the institution through artistic research and approaches. This is developed by drawing upon Jacques Rancière’s concept of ‘dissensus’, Chantal Mouffe’s ‘strategy of engagement’ and Michel de Certeau's idea of 'tactics'. Art as a dissensual activity turns artistic research into a dissident research that can serve to question academic consensus rather than conforming to its established structure. Interruption becomes a dissenting gesture.
I use a fictional and fictitious publication as a tool to 'interrupt' institutions. In this fictitious publication, I have borrowed Lieutenant Fontaine from Robert Bresson’s movie, ‘A Man Escaped’, and have introduced him as a protagonist of 'interrupting architecture', investigating his escape plan as an activity of 'architecting'. The journey of this publication goes through two short architectural narrations of two places: a prison (as discipline) and a library (as dominant discourse). These two narrations are combined with three formulae: amateur, fiction, misperformance or disloyalty; each acts as certain characteristics of dissidence. Together, these aim to raise the question: How do tactics of interruption contribute to dissensus in academia?
Hard Times. Lecture Performance as Gestural Approach to Develop Artistic Work-in-Progress
Artistic work is often an essential mode of articulation within artistic research, specifically when practice is understood as both source and target domain of the research. Therefore, within the performing arts, both process and product are essential gestures of artistic research and are indeed “justified and critical articulations of an interest in knowledge production."
In this exposition, the format of a lecture performance is investigated and discussed as an explicit articulation through which the process of both artistic work and research is shared, rather than functioning merely as a format for disseminating findings. The format of lecture performance that is investigated here frames the artistic work and theoretical-conceptual framework as two distinct, yet interrelated, processes shared with a conference audience. This includes the deliberate choice for a live performance of artistic work-in-progress, adding a gestural and at times very kinaesthetic aspect to otherwise textually-dominated forms of presentation.
The exposition as such has two focuses that are strongly related to each other, approaching the form of a feedback loop: on the one hand, the creation process of a new experimental performance work by Falk Hübner is investigated. "Hard Times" refers to the title of this artistic work: I will carry you over hard times. The performance itself is part of an artistic research into reduction in music, a continuation of the completed PhD research of the author (Hübner 2014). On the other hand, the lecture performance that employs this artistic work-in-progress as "material" as well as the related discussions with conference audiences is also explored.
The exposition will demonstrate how these conference discussions strongly inform the work process of the specific artistic work in question and attempt to shed an alternative light on the well-known concept of "audience talks", which typically serve to generate feedback and insights into audience perspectives for artists after tryouts or performances of unfinished work. The audiences of conferences are, in most cases, considerably different in nature than "standard" audiences, offering the possibility of insightful input on quite different facets of both artistic work and research process––provoked by the very form of a lecture performance as described above. The exposition suggests that this type of lecture performance, explicitly including the audience at a conference as important source of information, feedback and peer-review, forms a gestural method of artistic research in itself, whose full potential within artistic research is yet to be explored.
In this exposition, I will introduce a series of works that were exhibited in my solo exhibitions Notes from the Mouth of Shadows (2013), Reconfigured image (2013) and Possible object (2015).
In the exhibitions my main interest was to investigate the transformation of an image-space into a digital realm, where the very basic questions of representing space encounter fundamental changes.
More broadly, I will try to introduce my artistic process as a two-direction orbicular movement between concepts, codes and images. I will also try to take note of the translations that occur when working with an idea back and forth between different materials and references. I am interested in the possible errors and misunderstandings that can bring a singular quality to the predetermined iteration. In other words, I will try to define what is being translated by observing what is distinguishable only afterwards.
I see an analogy between the structure of a digital image and how the world is perceived as an image – almost as if cosmos would arise from chaos. Any bitmap image actualizes only one of all the possible variations of this specific bitmap and its properties.
In a more practical sense, it could be stated that the digital image is always in a process of translation when it is viewed. In short, the digital image is dependent of a translator (computer) by default. My attempt is to activate this dependency and take it from mere automatism to a creative gesture. This attempt could only be meaningful when all the three aspects (concept, code and screen) are taken into account. By activating the process of translation the dependency of the translator can be transformed into a positive, creative act.
Nietzsche 5 : The Fragmentary
Michael Schwab, Paulo de Assis
‘Nietzsche 5 : The Fragmentary’ is a collaborative research exposition, which presents a number of compositions by the young Friedrich Nietzsche (organised top to bottom) as well as various layers of reflection, interrogation, and speculation (organised left to right). It focuses on a moment of transformation around 1872 when Nietzsche moved from a serious interest in music composition to a career as a writer and philosopher. This period also coincides with the breakdown of Nietzsche’s friendship with Richard Wagner. The exposition suggests that Nietzsche’s own music as well as that of Wagner serves as a (negative) point of reference for the later Nietzsche, whose work, following Maurice Blanchot amongst others, can be characterised through the notion of the fragmentary, which places it also in relation to early Romanticism, in particular the writings of Friedrich Schlegel, Novalis, and Friedrich Hölderlin. While Nietzsche’s more monumental compositions, such as his unfinished Mass (1860) and the symphonic poem Ermanarich (1861), may be more problematic, the exposition suggests that in some smaller pieces – in particular in So lach doch mal (1862) and Das ‘Fragment an sich’ (1871) – a sense of the fragmentary in Nietzsche may already be constructed.
Beyond interpretations that focus more narrowly on Nietzsche’s work, this research exposition sets out to render the notion of the fragmentary productive for the wider context of artistic research. It does so with reference to Nietzsche’s notion of the untimely as a way to challenge both the dominant instrumentalisation of research and the notion of contemporaneity that seems central to present-day artistic practice. This not only provides perspectives into artistic epistemologies but also, more concretely, provides the methodology by which the research itself and its exposition have progressed. The overall mode is, thus, also that of the fragmentary, in which various media including text and image as well as audio and video recordings are distributed across a two-dimensional grid allowing multiple relationships and readings to emerge. The research exposition aims not only to discuss but ultimately also to employ the fragmentary so as to touch upon a specific artistic and intellectual motivation that we have come to identify with Nietzsche and which we suggest is also relevant today.
"Dear Rita," a series of eight letters to Rita Raley (Professor of English, University of California, Santa Barbara), is a research response to Raley’s presentation “Algorithmic Translations,” which she gave at the "Performance, Technology, Translation" event in New York in April 2015. Organized by The Barnard Center for Translation Studies and the Department of Theatre, the event explored “the theoretical and practical intersections between contemporary technologies of translation and performance.” In addition to presentations by Raley and W. B. Worthen, the symposium included a performance of love.abz, an independent art work and the artistic part of my doctoral degree at University of the Arts Helsinki, Theater Academy.
In "Dear Rita," I use screen captures of the Google Translate website to address through translation the many links and questions that arise from Raley’s insightful presentation. I comment on Raley’s discussion of Eric Zboya’s and Baden Pailthorpe’s work, both visual artists and researchers, and relate them to my own ongoing artistic research project into what I call “live writing.” My inquiry deals with a form of improvisatory, collaborative dramatic writing that employs algorithmic mediation and translation. In asking what the task of the machine translator in performance is or could be, I remark on some of the themes Raley discusses, including those relating to authorship, the nature of algorithmic translation, and the gesture of insistent re-translation of already machine translated text.