On March 25th, NICC had the pleasure to invite you to Politics without Poetics II, the second event in the series, initiated and moderated by Dessislava Dimova and Filip Gilissen. Politics without Poetics II presented Erik van Lieshout’s film “The Workers” (2014, 50’), followed by a conversation with the artist, as well as a Skype lecture and conversation with artist Amalia Ulman.
Politics without Poetics was conceived as an attempt to uncover multiple artistic routes for configuring art as a political practice, weaving global, historical and future perspectives into the discussion.
Art today has become a space where politics proper can be imagined, rehearsed and even practiced, a kind of ‘poetic politics’—a staged ideal of politics, an artistic corrective of reality. In this context, can we formulate an idea of political art without poetics? What would an art without artistic unconscious be? A kind of pure construction, strategy, design? With this series we look into practices that enact the political within and through the limits of reality, refusing the nostalgia of utopian dreams or the hope of art’s "emancipatory effect".
Politics without Poetics II gives insight into the practices of two artists who address the politics of gender and power, of authenticity and representation; the construction of the artist as a private-public persona and the construction of the artwork as a practice of life and self . They develop a critique of Western modes of representation(s) and modern "supreme fictions"; a desire to think in terms sensitive to difference (of others without opposition, of heterogeneity without hierarchy); 'a skepticism regarding autonomous "spheres" of culture or separate "fields" of experts; an imperative to go beyond formal filiations (of text to text) to trace social affiliations (the institutional "density" of the text in the world); in short, a will to grasp the present nexus of culture and politics and to affirm a practice resistant both to academic modernism and political reaction'. *
* Hall Foster, The Anti-Aesthetic: Essays on Postmodern Culture, 1983