artistic activism and agonistic spaces

Posted: October 23, 2007 in Art Attacks, Musings, Stumbled Upon

this is for those who always insist or impose upon us artists and creative writers that every piece we write or make must have an explicit social commentary, preferably against capitalism. “why not put a scene showing a hungry squatter kid is asking for food in your story. at least show that you have compassion for the poor,” says one marxist-maoist academic. well, here is your answer:

“I want to stress that I do not see the relation between art and politics in terms of two separately constituted fields, art on one side and politics on the other, between which a relation would need to be established. There is an aesthetic dimension in the political and there is a political dimension in art. This is why I consider that it is not useful to make a distinction between political and non-political art. From the point of view of the theory of hegemony, artistic practices play a role in the constitution and maintenance of a given symbolic order or in its challenging and this is why they necessarily have a political dimension. The political, for its part, concerns the symbolic ordering of social relations, what Claude Lefort calls ‘the mise en scène’, ‘the mise en forme’ of human coexistence and this is where lies its aesthetic dimension.”–Chantal Mouffe, Artistic Activismn and Agonistic Spaces from Art and Research Journal.

Read the rest of the paper here. 

Comments
  1. momo says:

    Came across this link for the Middlesex University (UK) visual culture research site. Enjoy!
    http://visual-culture.com/

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