Umělec magazine 2004/2 >> Dance, After All, God is a DJ List of all editions.
Dance, After All, God is a DJ
Umělec magazine
Year 2004, 2
6,50 EUR
8 USD
Send the printed edition:
Order subscription

Dance, After All, God is a DJ

Umělec magazine 2004/2

01.02.2004

Tomáš Pospiszyl | en cs

The Contemporary Art Mechanisms
and Contemplations of Nicolas Bourriaud



It requires courage to grasp a global theory of modern art. The last wave of such efforts were carried out as postmodernist re-evaluations of well-established canons, essentially a revisionist effort encompassing even distant post-war avant-garde history, and paradoxically ignoring complex synchronicities. Even large elaborate art histories often omit the last two decades of the 20th Century, leaving them as an open chapter, with its certain names but uncertain summary.
From such a point of view Postproduction, by Nicolas Bourriaud, signifies an ambitious overall meaning for Czech arts. Identifying contemporary art, Bourriaud examines the art of the internet age. This art he defines merely as interpretations and reproductions of existing cultural products. The present-day artist is not unlike a DJ who makes new songs out of existing footage. Also, the artist is like a programmer or an internet browser, who does not create anything new, but seeks his own way through the world of existing information and symbols, offering a new mode of decoding existing reality. At most, contemporary art works resemble a “communication portal.” According to Bourriaud, the difference between cultural production and consumption becomes nearly invisible, and an artist and a consumer of culture are hardly to be distinguished from each other.
If this is the case, then it represents the most massive revolution in human cultural history. But since we are more likely skeptical about the possibility of technology to change the nature of society globally, we are unlikely to believe the bulk of Bourriaud’s projection. Even though the internet is a great tool, we continue to read books, go to libraries and art shows, and besides on-line dates we still have normal relationships. Many features of contemporary art have a powerful influence on art itself, and according to Bourriaud they are considered as revolutionary and brand new, even if they may not be so new.
Art has always been self-consuming, even cannibalistic, since before the internet started. Bourriaud’s views on contemporary sampling, or the use of seminal art features in new contexts are not persuasive at all, since these may not really differ from similar art methods of the past. Art creators have always behaved like thieves, but today it is much easier than before due to advanced technologies. But the principle stays the same. Recycling motifs and art techniques is the basic feature of art itself, and due to this feature, art history can be grasped. Here we may use historical analysis of the term “originality,” disliked by Bourriaud, which became important within the 19th and 20th Centuries. Rosalind Krauss in her study describes this originality as often ostensible, and she claims modern great men created and mixed varied available existing tracks. In the 19th Century, Édouard Manet made a remix of Vélasquéz and Veronese, but it took him much longer than it would take today, with Photoshop. Auguste Rodin made complicated loops and recycled himself. Pablo Picasso was like a Google search of world art - like an omnipresent search engine equipped with the genius of speed and austerity. In a second chapter of his book, Bourriaud writes of new art work strategies, and it seems all of these had already been implied in the 50s by the Situationists, independent of new available technologies. At issue is the appearance of post-productive strategies, and whether those are in alarmingly greater volume and should be taken as universal principles. I reckon that has a long time to come.
Bourriaud’s book brings significant discussion of works by Jason Rhoades, Thomas Hirschhorn, Rikrit Tiravaniji, Piere Huyghe and Maurizius Cattelano. In the language of Bourriaud, it serves as an entry of his favorite references to his homepage. His meditations are fragmented, and the range of examples and of work extent make the whole text rather like a long magazine article, a theoretical novel or a curator’s concept of a planned or imaginary exhibition. Such an exhibition may legitimize certain artists and their works, but they do not write art histories. The curator’s job is more the job of an artist than an art historian. The first one relies on instinct, taste and inspiration, the second must rely on a wider field of existing literature and theoretical research. As it should appear from these lines, it is a pleasure to disagree with an author such as Bourriaud. If analysis and criticism of his opinions will grow into inspiring and stimulating debate on contemporary art, then the book has served its purpose.

Tomáš Pospiszyl
Nicolas Bourriaud: Postprodukce. Czech translation from the French by Petr Turek. Praha: Tranzit, 104 pgs, 2004.
Photograps by Vinigur Gerbit, (How to use granades, 2004)




01.02.2004

Comments

There are currently no comments.

Add new comment

Recommended articles

My Career in Poetry or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Institution My Career in Poetry or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Institution
An American poet was invited to the White House in order to read his controversial plagiarized poetry. All tricked out and ready to do it his way, he comes to the “scandalous” realization that nothing bothers anyone anymore, and instead of banging your head against the wall it is better to build you own walls or at least little fences.
The Top 10 Czech Artists from the 1990s The Top 10 Czech Artists from the 1990s
The editors of Umělec have decided to come up with a list of ten artists who, in our opinion, were of crucial importance for the Czech art scene in the 1990s. After long debate and the setting of criteria, we arrived at a list of names we consider significant for the local context, for the presentation of Czech art outside the country and especially for the future of art. Our criteria did not…
Terminator vs. Avatar: Notes on Accelerationism Terminator vs. Avatar: Notes on Accelerationism
Why political intellectuals, do you incline towards the proletariat? In commiseration for what? I realize that a proletarian would hate you, you have no hatred because you are bourgeois, privileged, smooth-skinned types, but also because you dare not say that the only important thing there is to say, that one can enjoy swallowing the shit of capital, its materials, its metal bars, its polystyrene…
Wicked / Interview with Jim Hollands Wicked / Interview with Jim Hollands
“A person must shake someone’s hand three times while gazing intently into their eyes. That’s the key to memorizing their name with certainty. It is in this way that I’ve remembered the names of 5,000 people who have been to the Horse Hospital,” Jim Hollands told me. Hollands is an experimental filmmaker, musician and curator. In his childhood, he suffered through tough social situations and…
04.02.2020 10:17
Where to go next?
out - archeology
S.d.Ch, Solitaires and Periphery Culture (a generation born around 1970)
S.d.Ch, Solitaires and Periphery Culture (a generation born around 1970)
Josef Jindrák
Who is S.d.Ch? A person of many interests, active in various fields—literature, theater—known for his comics and collages in the art field. A poet and playwright foremost. A loner by nature and determination, his work doesn’t meet the current trends. He always puts forth personal enunciation, although its inner structure can get very complicated. It’s pleasant that he is a normal person and a…
Read more...
out - poetry
THC Review and the Condemned Past
THC Review and the Condemned Past
Ivan Mečl
We are the fifth global party! Pítr Dragota and Viki Shock, Fragmenty geniality / Fragments of Charisma, May and June 1997. When Viki came to visit, it was only to show me some drawings and collages. It was only as an afterthought that he showed me the Czech samizdat publication from the late 1990s, THC Review. When he saw how it fascinated me, he panicked and insisted that THAT creation is…
Read more...
prize
To hen kai pán (Jindřich Chalupecký Prize Laureate 1998 Jiří Černický)
To hen kai pán (Jindřich Chalupecký Prize Laureate 1998 Jiří Černický)
Read more...
birthing pains
Who’s Afraid of Motherhood?
Who’s Afraid of Motherhood?
Zuzana Štefková
Expanding the definition of “mother” is also a space for reducing pressure and for potential liberation.1 Carol Stabile The year was 2003, and in the deep forests of Lapák in the Kladno area, a woman in the later phase of pregnancy stopped along the path. As part of the “Artists in the Woods” exhibit, passers-by could catch a glimpse of her round belly, which she exposed especially for them in…
Read more...
Books, video, editions and artworks that might interest you Go to e-shop
1993, 28.5 x 42 cm (4 Pages + alt. ending 3 Pages), Pen & Ink Comic
More info...
1 800 EUR
2 106 USD
"Thanatopolis" limited Collection for London Show.
More info...
39 EUR
46 USD
The volume year contains 7 issues. The magazine is in Czech language and has an English conclusion.
More info...
11 EUR
13 USD
1999, 43.5 x 35.5cm, Pen & Ink Drawing
More info...
1 118,40 EUR
1 309 USD

Studio

Divus and its services

Studio Divus designs and develops your ideas for projects, presentations or entire PR packages using all sorts of visual means and media. We offer our clients complete solutions as well as all the individual steps along the way. In our work we bring together the most up-to-date and classic technologies, enabling us to produce a wide range of products. But we do more than just prints and digital projects, ad materials, posters, catalogues, books, the production of screen and space presentations in interiors or exteriors, digital work and image publication on the internet; we also produce digital films—including the editing, sound and 3-D effects—and we use this technology for web pages and for company presentations. We specialize in ...
 

Citation of the day. Publisher is not liable for any mental and physical states which may arise after reading the quote.

Enlightenment is always late.
CONTACTS AND VISITOR INFORMATION The entire editorial staff contacts

DIVUS LONDON

 

STORE
Arch 8, Resolution Way, Deptford

London SE8 4NT, United Kingdom
Open on appointment

 

OFFICE
7 West Street, Hastings
East Sussex, TN34 3AN
, United Kingdom
Open on appointment
 

Ivan Mečl
ivan@divus.org.uk, +44 (0) 7526 902 082

DIVUS
NOVA PERLA
Kyjov 37, 407 47 Krásná Lípa
Czech Republic
divus@divus.cz
+420 222 264 830, +420 602 269 888

Open daily 10am to 6pm
and on appointment.

 

DIVUS BERLIN
Potsdamer Str. 161, 10783 Berlin
Germany

berlin@divus.cz, +49 (0) 1512 9088 150
Open on appointment.

 

DIVUS WIEN
wien@divus.cz
DIVUS MEXICO CITY
mexico@divus.cz
DIVUS BARCELONA
barcelona@divus.cz
DIVUS MOSCOW & MINSK

alena@divus.cz

DIVUS NEWSLETTER SUBSCRIPTION
Divus New book by I.M.Jirous in English at our online bookshop.