|Daniel Birnbaum, Sven-Olov WallensteinSpacing Philosophy
Lyotard and the Idea of the Exhibition
In 1985, the philosopher Jean-François Lyotard curated “Les Immatériaux” at Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris. Though widely misunderstood at the time, the exhibition marked a “curatorial turn” in critical theory. Through its experimental layout and hybrid presentation of objects, technologies, and ideas, this pioneering exploration of virtuality reflected on the exhibition as a medium of communication, and anticipated a deeper engagement with immersive and digital space in both art and theory. Spacing Philosophy analyzes the significance and logic of Lyotard’s exhibition while contextualizing it in the history of exhibition practices, the philosophical tradition, and Lyotard’s own work on aesthetics and phenomenology.
|Merlin Carpenter“The Outside Can’t Go Outside”|
Why has there been so much interest in “surplus value” in recent years? In “The Outside Can’t Go Outside”, artist Merlin Carpenter considers how this term has been inserted into contemporary art theory following the financial crisis of 2007/8. The book focuses on the idea that the value of art is located in unpaid mental, educational, and communicational labor that is gradually accrued and then exploited according to the logic of Marx’s central thesis on exploitation. This much-hyped view is rejected in favor of a more rigorous Marxist interpretation of the nature of surplus value, and its role in a systematic law of value.
|Isabelle Graw, Ewa Lajer-Burcharth (Eds.) Painting beyond Itself
The Medium in the Post-medium Condition
In response to recent developments in pictorial practice and critical discourse, Painting beyond Itself: The Medium in the Post-medium Condition seeks new ways to approach and historicize the question of the medium. Reaching back to the earliest theoretical and institutional definitions of painting, this book—based on a conference at Harvard University in 2013—focuses on the changing role of materiality in establishing painting as the privileged practice, discourse, and institution of modernity.
First published in German in 1987, this is artist and writer Jutta Koether’s meditation on painting. In novella form, f. follows several disembodied female characters as they consider velvet, coral, the curtain, money, color, red.
|Kim GordonIs It My Body?
Throughout the 1980s and early ’90s, Kim Gordon—widely known as a founding member of the influential band Sonic Youth—produced a series of writings on art and music. Ranging from neo-Conceptual artworks to broader forms of cultural criticism, these rare texts are brought together in this volume for the first time, placing Gordon’s writing within the context of the artist-critics of her generation, including Mike Kelley, John Miller, and Dan Graham.
|Isabelle Graw, Daniel Birnbaum, Nikolaus Hirsch (Eds.)Thinking through Painting
Reflexivity and Agency beyond the Canvas
Painting has demonstrated remarkable perseverance in the expanding field of contemporary art and the surrounding ecology of media images. It appears, however, to have dispelled its own once-uncontested material basis: no longer confined to being synonymous with a flat picture plane hung on the wall, today, painting instead tends to emphasize the apparatus of its appearance and the conduits of its circulation.
|Isabelle Graw, Daniel Birnbaum, Nikolaus Hirsch (Eds.)Art and Subjecthood
The Return of the Human Figure in Semiocapitalism
This book brings together contributions from the eponymous conference, all of which seek to speculate on the reasons as to why, since the turn of the millennium, we have encountered so many artworks that tend to reconcile Minimalism with suggestions of the human figure.
|Ewa Lajer-BurcharthChardin Material|
Adapted from the lecture she delivered at the Institut für Kunstkritik, Städelschule in Frankfurt am Main, Ewa Lajer-Burcharth’s essay explores the dimension of self-reflexivity in the work of eighteenth-century French painter, Jean-Siméon Chardin.
|John KelseyRich Texts
Selected Writing for Art
Compiled for the first time here, the critic, artist, gallerist, dealer, translator John Kelsey’s selected essays gamesomely convey some of the most poignant challenges in the art world and in the many social roles it creates.
|Daniel Birnbaum, Isabelle Graw (Eds.)The Power of Judgment
A Debate on Aesthetic Critique
Comprised of a lecture by Christoph Menke and two respective responses to it by Daniel Loick and Isabelle Graw, The Power of Judgment both attests to the importance of judgment in art criticism and argues against its determining verdicts.
|Daniel Birnbaum, Isabelle Graw (Eds.)Canvases and Careers Today
Criticism and Its Markets
Canvases and Careers Today brings together contributions from the eponymous conference organized by the Institut für Kunstkritik, Frankfurt am Main. Its goal is to provide deeper insights and more complexity to current debates on the relationship between criticism, art, and the market.
|Daniel Birnbaum, Isabelle Graw (Eds.)Under Pressure
Pictures, Subjects, and the New Spirit of Capitalism
Under Pressure gathers together the contributions to the same-titled conference held at the Institut für Kunstkritik from 2006–07.