Mark von Schlegell


“To gain that which is worth having, it may be necessary to lose everything else.”
—Bernadette Devlin

2011. A kulturnaut, a squid, a Shakespeare, a dog, an artist abstract, a chrononaut, a washerwoman, Tom Ripley and his bones all pass through New Dystopia. Their sped-up speculations lead to new models of deterritorialized life. Visionary and hallucinatory models. Through them, Mark von Schlegell “displays” some of the facets of the invisible catastrophe breaking up our world, which artists in particular are responding to.

Put together in the wings of the “Dystopia” exhibition at the CAPC musée d’art contemporain de Bordeaux, acting as a resonance chamber, this illustrated novel raises the issue of possible futures in the form of a critical fiction, and involves the outposts of the novel to come. About New Dystopia, the city in which the novel’s protagonists live, the narrator states: “As an American … one only came to New Dystopia City to become an artist. That only there was it a way of life.” According to von Schlegell, we are living in that new metropolis. He states, “Dystopia is today.”

After Venusia (2005) and Mercury Station (2009), both published by Semiotext(e), New Dystopia is Mark von Schlegell’s third novel.

Artists: Wallace Berman, Cosima von Bonin, Brian Calvin, Tony Carter, Marc Camille Chaimowicz, Peter Coffin, Simon Denny, Andreas Dobler, Roe Ethridge, Keith Farquhar, Hans-Peter Feldmann, Aurélien Froment, Cyprien Gaillard, Isa Genzken, Dan Graham, Robert Grosvenor, Sebastian Hammwöhner, Roger Hiorns, Ull Hohn, Des Hughes, Peter Hutchinson, Eugene Isabey, Sergej Jensen, On Kawara, Michael Krebber, Jesus Mari Lazkano, Rita McBride, John Miller, Pathetic Sympathy Seekers, Manfred Pernice, Stephen G. Rhodes, Glen Rubsamen, Sterling Ruby, Julia Scher, Frances Scholz, Michael Scott, Markus Selg, Reena Spaulings, Michael Stevenson, Tommy Støckel, Josef Strau, Blair Thurman, Mathieu Tonetti, Oscar Tuazon, Franz West, Jordan Wolfson

Co-published with CAPC musée d’art contemporain de Bordeaux

Mark von Schlegell - New Dystopia
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