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Around a sculpture by Alberto Giacometti
Around a sculpture by Alberto Giacometti

Georges Didi-Huberman, Mira Fliescher (ed.), ...

The Cube and the Face

The Cube, as we can see, isn’t one. It is an ­irregular polyhedron which catalogues describe as having twelve sides — that nice figure, twelve, a destinal figure if ever there was one, which willfully evokes Mallarmé’s throw of the dice, at the very moment that the clock strikes twelve at midnight, in the dark house of Igitur. One can imagine that Giacometti wanted to give a unique volume to the twelve facets — six and six — of two cubes added together: a unique architecture...
  • Alberto Giacometti
  • abstract art
  • art history
  • face
  • art theory
News + Events

Straub/Huillet: Sagen Sie's den Steinen

13.09.2017 – 19.11.2017

Akademie der Künste
Hanseatenweg 10
10557 Berlin

32. Literaturtage Lana mit Joseph Vogl

30.08.2017, 20:00 – 02.09.2017

Schallerhof in der Vill
Raffeingasse 2
39011 Lana

Storming of the Winter Palace: History as Theater

23.09.2017 – 25.10.2017

Gessnerallee Zürich
Gessnerallee 8
8001 Zürich

Anthropocene Lecture: Bruno Latour

29.09.2017, 19:00

Haus der Kulturen der Welt
John-Foster-Dulles-Allee 10
10557 Berlin


Current Texts

Joseph Rykwert

The Final Step: From the model to »the thing proper«

Notoriously, any passage from one stage to another almost inevitably involves a loss of spontaneityeven of authenticity. Spontaneity has been valued more highly by recent critics than the monumental scale or full accomplishment and smooth finish of the final work, the higher and grander res ipsa. In that way, the passage of the work of art through the various stages from conception to completion is analogous to the filtering that a concept incarnate in the sounds and shapes of one language undergoes in its passage to the forms and feel of another one. Although this analogy is recognized for sculpture and painting, architecture is rarely mentioned in this context.

Yet it represents an even more elaborate passage or translation from one “language” to anotherwith all its inevitable forfeitures and contaminations. At the beginning of the first treatise on architecture of modern times, Leon Battista Alberti found it necessary to define the...

  • craftsmanship
  • model
  • architecture
  • practices of drawing
  • design processes
Current Texts

Maurizio Lazzarato

The endless array of merchandise

In contemporary capitalism, subjectivity is the product of a mass industry organized on a global level. For Félix Guattari this is actually the first and most important of capitalist productions, because it preconditions and is part of production in all other forms of merchandise. Subjectivity is a ‘key merchandise,’ which in its ‘nature’ is put together, developed and manufactured in the same way as a car, electricity, or a washing machine. Capitalism organizes the production and control of subjectivity through two different systems, which weave together the manufacture of the individuated subject (“social subjection”) and what seems to be the opposite, de-subjectification (“machinic enslavement”). Therefore capitalism exercises a twofold hold over subjectivity.

Social subjection involves techniques of government, which pass by way of, and mobilize, representation (political and linguistic), areas of knowledge, discursive visual practices, etc., and produce ‘subjects of rights,’ ‘political subjects,’ in short: ‘subjects’ of ‘I’s,’ of individuals. By...

  • Governmentality
  • identity
  • algorithms
  • capitalism
  • data


Epistemologies, Aesthetics, Politics
Epistemologies, Aesthetics, Politics

Marie-Luise Angerer (ed.), Bernd Bösel (ed.), ...

Timing of Affect

For many years now, the time of affect has been a major issue in the humanities, sciences, art and media. Affect stands here for feelings, emotions, processes of affection, for movements of the bodies, for a missing time – with one word: for a broad range of ideas and discursive contexts and histories. Timing of Affect assembles contributions from different disciplines – from philosophy to film, music, sound, media and art, through to technology, computation and neurology – to explore...
  • media theory
  • affects
  • epistemology
  • aesthetics
  • body
Current Texts

Peter Krapp

Computer Games and the Distraction Economy

Digital culture promises a business model that oscillates between blockbusters and niche products. This model leads to upheavals in the market that directly affect, for instance, the quality and availability of computer games. Just as we rely on cognitive models in our interactions with individuals, our understanding of complex social situations depends, accordingly, on models of a larger scale, based on longitudinal studies of our basic assumptions. In the field of finance, for instance, there are those who, trusting the rational expectation that markets will “naturally” correct themselves, seek “beta” in the wisdom of crowds, and there are reflexive behaviorists who, assuming that the world is in a constant state of flux or disequilibrium, look for “alpha” opportunities in the madness of the marketplace. Media studies is similarly divided between those who regard crowdsourcing as an impetus for transformation and progress (from the printing press to the mass media of...

  • digital culture
  • simulation
  • computer games
  • social movements
Current Texts

Friedrich Balke

Fiction and the Possibility of Historic Events

Should historiography beat history – social, cultural, or even media histories – into shapes that fit a principle determining the possibility or impossibility of objects, mentalities and events? To deal with this question, I refer to Jacques Rancière’s considerations presented in his 1997 lecture titled “The Trouble with Ana.” Rancière first developed the same argument in his 1992 book The Names of History. To me, this is still one of his most interesting books, productive as it is for the histories of cultures and sciences, even though it does not yet deal with aesthetic regimes or disagreement (mésentente). My own thoughts on the matter touch upon the question of the political in so far as they concern the relation between names or words and the places or “spaces” in which they appear. For as Rancière pointed out later in Disagreement, “Political activity is whatever shifts a body from the place assigned to...

  • History
  • name
  • historiography
  • history of media