Occupy theory


“There is a generation of young artists whose work specifically consists in inscribing a so-called theoretical work into the iconic economy of the “spectacular” space of the exhibition; their aim is not to share thought, but to produce theory as reified matter, that is, to produce inert stuff that is taking the form of theory. This gesture will hardly produce anything new in theory since it relies on a pre-existing frame of recognition where theory is marked as purely linguistic appearance (and is thus “reified”). A form of mimicry operates here that somehow becomes “usurpatory”. Fortunately, there is at the same time another generation of people dealing genuinely with new forms of theory: they elaborate theoretical objects by using strategies found in the visual arts—inverting, somehow, the principle of the bourgeois ready-made— but also in science, literature, sociology, publicity.” [1]

[1] On the Vanishing Point of Intellectual Activity. A Conversation between Manuel Cirauqui and Daniel Kurjaković. Burger Collection Research project ‘Quadrilogy’ Theory / Conversations.


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“The resurgence of experimentalism in these writers (La generación Nocilla) does not signal a clean break from recent Spanish fiction but rather a shift in the existing field. Similarly, their texts do not reflect a consciousness that is entirely absorbed in the virtual reigns Mora calls ‘‘pangea’’ and Fernández Porta terms ‘‘afterpop’’. Analyzing a number of new wave fictions, I argue instead that their narrative represents an effort to assimilate global and virtual space with local and physical places. Their varied texts converge around the theme of how subjects locate themselves within a simultaneously fragmented and interconnected world. They compose symbolic imaginings of what subjectivity looks like in a world of increasing connectivity between the local and the global.” [2]

[2] Jesse Barker (2011): The Nocilla Effect: what is new in the New Wave of spanish narrative, Journal of Spanish cultural Studies, 12:2, 237-248.

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“We notice a vague spiritual nausea […]  The ghosts that come to us offer no vocabulary to describe the emptiness they helped create within us. […] we have not come to negotiate. We have come to confront the darkness at its source, here […] The significance of the phantoms from our childhood becomes clearer. We understand them as souls detached from their former selves and meanings, and reduced to messengers […] Advertising campaigns have become the central art of our generation. The artistic imagination, previously occupied with translating heaven and listening quietly for the intangible within and around us, has traded these idylls for steady employment producing fetishistic car commercials […] We have come here to vanish those ghosts; to assert our real selves and lives; to build genuine relationships with each other and the world; and to remind ourselves that another path is possible […] It is time that the unreal be exposed for what it is.” [3]

[3] Communiqué 1. Tidal (Occypy theory, occupy strategy). Issue 1. December 2011.


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