Contributions by Jean-Pierre Cometti, Amelia Jones, Antonio Negri, Chantal Pontbriand, José Antonio Sanchez; visual essays by Mathieu Abonnenc, Jennifer Allora & Guillermo Calzadilla, Brad Butler & Karen Mirza, Geneviève Cadieux, Adrian Dan, Angela Detanico & Rafael Lain, Carole Douillard, Cevdet Erek, Köken Ergun, Esther Ferrer, Chiara Fumai, Simon Fujiwara, Ryan Gander, Dora García, Camille Henrot, Sandra Johnston, Latifa Laâbisi, La Ribot, Ines Lechleitner, Franck Leibovici, Cristina Lucas, Haroon Mirza, Roman Ondak, Falke Pisano, Chloé Quenum, Pedro Reyes, Julião Sarmento, Ulla von Brandenburg, Carey Young, Héctor Zamora
Performativity explores the in-between space when bodies or objects are left to perform. The fact that we are living more and more in an “immaterial” world, dominated by mediatization (which some call spectacle), the impact of globalization, the increasing tendency to think of politics as biopolitics—these different factors enhance performance over materiality, or object making. Per/Form investigates the process of this enhancement—how to work through form, and how to let form speak for itself.
The meaning of performance and performativity today are examined here through different modes of “display”: a book, an exhibition, and its three “Intensity Days” of performative situations. This book compliments these events and the sixteen installations of the exhibition curated by Chantal Pontbriand, “PER/FORM_How to Do Things with[out] Words” (CA2M Centro de Arte Dos de Mayo in Madrid, March 22–September 21, 2014), with theoretical texts and visual essays by thirty participating artists, including musical scores, drawings, documents, and photographs, which all work together to generate various perspectives on the subject through different theoretical premises (politics, experience, immateriality, action, realization, manifestation) and also through the artists’ many diverging perspectives.
Copublished with CA2M Centro de Arte Dos de Mayo, Madrid
Design by Agnès Dahan Studio Paris
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Wäre ich von Stoff, ich würde mich färben / Were I Made of Matter, I Would Color
Edited by Sabine Folie, Ilse Lafer
Texts by Mieke Bal, Rainer Borgemeister, Sabine Folie, Michael Glasmeier, Ulrike Grossarth, Dietrich Karner, Elliot R. Wolfson
This book is published on occasion of Ulrike Grossarth’s eponymous retrospective at the Generali Foundation in Vienna. Both the book and the exhibition trace the evolution of Gossarth’s practice, with a particular emphasis on her training as a dancer in the 1970s, to draw connections between the early years with her sculptural settings and actions and her most recent work, which engages with history more generally.
In her contributing essay, Ulrike Gossarth states that the title—Were I Made of Matter, I Would Color—is a counter-model to the fundamental Descartian formula “I think therefore I am,” a position which exists between consciousness and disembodiment, in a state of incompleteness. Rainer Borgemeister discusses the artist’s actions from 1978 to 1987, which were preceded by her critical engagement with modern dance. Further contributions from Mieke Bal, Michael Glasmeier, and Elliot R. Wolfson discuss Grossarth’s practice in relation to history, the body, and polymorphism.
Copublished with the Generali Foundation, Vienna
Design by Karin Holzfeind
- Were I Made of Matter, I Would Color
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Hu Fang’s Dear Navigator is a collection of ten short stories that reflect on contemporary society, politics, and the human condition. The author takes us on a journey across time and space to hidden realities where we meet culture workers, astronauts, airplanes, Zen masters, and hunger artists. The title story “Dear Navigator” is a collection of letters written during a 520-day simulated space mission to Mars—to test if humans can endure travel from Earth to Mars and back again. “Whale Song” tells the story of XP, a lonely male escort, as he goes on a surreal journey to self-realization, and “The Shame of Participation” tells a tale of two thieving artists who legally steal objects from those living in a city in desperation. When the reality turns into fiction, and the science fiction becomes reality, Hu draws on the experience of everyday life, the past, and the unknown future to create stories of otherworldly melancholy and humor.
Hu Fang is a fiction writer and cofounder of Vitamin Creative Space, Guangzhou, and The Pavilion, Beijing. He lives and works in Guangzhou and Beijing. Previously published titles include Troubled Laughter (2012), Garden of Mirrored Flowers (2010), and Pavilion to the Heart’s Insight (2008). His stories have been published in e-flux journal, Manifesta Journal, and various publications including Ming Wong: Life of Imitation, Drone Fiction, Odyssey: Architecture and Literature, and Gwangju Folly.
Copublished with The Pavilion
Design by Sam de Groot
- Hu Fang - Dear Navigator
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Edited by Sylvère Lotringer and Christian Marazzi
with a new introduction by Sylvère Lotringer, “In the Shadow of the Red Brigades”
Most of the writers who contributed to the issue were locked up at the time in Italian jails…. I was trying to draw the attention of the American Left, which still believed in Eurocommunism, to the fate of Autonomia. The survival of the last politically creative movement in the West was at stake, but no one in the United States seemed to realize that, or be willing to listen. Put together as events in Italy were unfolding, the Autonomia issue—which has no equivalent in Italy, or anywhere for that matter—arrived too late, but it remains an energizing account of a movement that disappeared without bearing a trace, but with a big future still ahead of it.
Semiotext(e) is reissuing in book form its legendary magazine issue Autonomia: Post-Political Politics, originally published in New York in 1980. Edited by Sylvère Lotringer and Christian Marazzi with the direct participation of the main leaders and theorists of the Autonomist movement (including Antonio Negri, Mario Tronti, Franco Piperno, Oreste Scalzone, Paolo Virno, Sergio Bologna, and Franco Berardi), this volume is the only first-hand document and contemporaneous analysis that exists of the most innovative post-’68 radical movement in the West. The movement itself was broken when Autonomia members were falsely accused of (and prosecuted for) being the intellectual masterminds of the Red Brigades; but even after the end of Autonomia, this book remains a crucial testimony of the way this creative, futuristic, neo-anarchistic, postideological, and nonrepresentative political movement of young workers and intellectuals anticipated issues that are now confronting us in the wake of Empire. In the next two years, Semiotext(e) will publish eight books by such Italian “Post-Fordist” intellectuals as Antonio Negri, Christian Marazzi, Paolo Virno, and Bifo, as they update the theories of Autonomia for the new century.
Sylvère Lotringer, general editor of Semiotext(e), lives in New York and Baja, California. He is the author of Overexposed: Perverting Perversions (Semiotext(e), 2007).Christian Marazzi was born in Lugano, Switzerland, in 1951. He obtained a degree in Political Science at the University of Padova, a master’s degree at the London School of Economics and a doctoral degree in Economics at the City University of London. He has taught at the University of Padova, the State University of New York, and at the University of Lausanne. He is currently Director of Socio-Economic Research at the Scuola Universitaria della Svizzera Italiana.
“[The] recent reissue of Autonomia: Post-Political Politics, Semiotext(e)’s 1980 special issue on autonomia… provides a much needed historical framework for understanding the disciplined dispersion of this movement and the contemporary work of writers, such as Antonio Negri and Paolo Virno, who were formed by it.”—Artforum
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