Unexpected Encounters III: On Exodus

Open seminar developed by Ivana Bago and Antonia Majaca.

With lectures by Franco Berardi Bifo and Jelena Vesić

Removed From the Crowd is an ongoing research and publishing project developed by the Institute for Duration, Location and Variables (DeLVe) that had its previous iterations in Zagreb, Belgrade, Ljubljana and Prague. The series of seminars titled Unexpected Encounters brings together theoretical, research and artistic projects and practices, initiating new and unexpected links between different aesthetico- political preoccupations.

Based on the reading of selected phenomena and concepts that informed the artistic, curatorial and intellectual practices in Yugoslavia during the 1960s and the 1970s, the project opens itself towards a broader reflection on the issues of community, solidarity, exodus, Dyonisian socialism, the reconfiguration of the notions of visibility and productivity, performativity and delayed audience while testing the resonances of these phenomena in different geographies and temporalities, through new collaborations and research contributions. The series of seminars Unexpected Encounters in particular, brings together new research and research in progress by practitioners from different fields, activating an encounter and an open reflection between the presenters, organizers and the audience.

The upcoming seminar Unexpected Encounters III relates to the issues of laziness, non-productivity and exodus through the prism of artistic practices on the one hand, and on the other looks into these same phenomena in the context of contemporary modes of production, financial capitalism and crisis, the staged conflict of the ‘productive’ North and the ‘lazy’ South of Europe.

The seminar is opened by the curator and writer Jelena Vesić, followed by a lecture of Italian theorist and activist Franco Berardi Bifo.

In her lecture Exhibition on work and laziness: General Rehearsal, Belgrade based curator, cultural activist and author Jelena Vesić will work towards juxtaposing the motifs of Stakhanovism, enthusiasm, diligence and workaholism with the notions of laziness, strike and the boycott of work. Images of work and laziness linked to the political space of socialist Yugoslavia of the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s, above all to popular iconography of Stakhanovism in media and social sphere, will be brought into relation with the expressions and representations of laziness in the context of the so-called New Art Practices (conceptual art practices) in former Yugoslavia.

In his lecture Money, Semiocapital and the Infinity of Language the Italian writer, activist and theorist Franco Berardi Bifo will discuss the process of financial abstraction from the point of view of the history of poetical language during the 20th century. The agony of financial capitalism may, according to Bifo, prelude to different outcomes: the establishment of a totalitarian model of submission of the living body and language to the mathematical ferocity of debt, or the final collapse of the capitalist gestalt and the exodus - proliferation of non-monetary forms of social production. The lecture will revolve around several axes: the notions of language, money, debt and insolvency in the context of capitalism as a semiotic form; financial mathematical ferocity and the infinity of language: the semiotic excess; deterritorialization: from the modern bourgeoisie to the predatory virtual class; the incompatibility of the financial model and the social body; the limits and language - P. Virno, L. Wittgenstein and the space of poetry.

Jelena Vesić is independent curator, cultural activist, writer, editor and lecturer who lives and works in Belgrade and abroad. She was co-editor of Prelom – Journal of Images and Politics (Belgrade) 2001-2009, and founding member of the Prelom Collective (Belgrade) 2005-2010. She is also co-editor of Red Thread – Journal for social theory, contemporary art and activism, (Istanbul) since 2009 and member of editorial board of Art Margins (MIT Press). Her research is dedicated to the politics of representation in art and visual culture, practices of self-organization and politization of cultural work. Her recent curatorial projects include Lecture Performance, Museum of Contemporary Art – Belgrade and Koelnisher Kunstverein and Political Practices of (post-) Yugoslav Art: RETROSPECTIVE 01, Museum 25th of May (MIJ) - Belgrade.

Franco Berardi Bifo is the founder of the magazine A/traverso (1975-1981) and was part of the staff of Radio Alice, the first free pirate radio station in Italy (1976-1978). Like others involved in the political movement of Autonomia in Italy during the 1970's, he fled to Paris, where he worked with Felix Guattari in the field of schizoanalysis. Among his book are: After the Future (2011), The Soul at Work (2010), Felix (2001), Cibernauti (1994), Mutazione e Cyberpunk (1993) and numerous essay published in magazines such as Semiotext(e), Chimères, Metropoli, Musica 80. He’s regular contributor to the e-flux journal and coordinator of the European School for Social Imagination (SCEPSI). His book Poetry and Finance will be published by Semiotext(e) in September this year.

Monday, July 9, 2012, 18.00 - 21.00
Pogon, Zagreb Center for Independent Culture and Youth - Jedinstvo Hall
Trnjanski nasip bb, Zagreb

Organized by:
DeLVe | Institute for Duration, Location and Variables

Supported by: Ministry of Culture, Croatia, City of Zagreb
In collaboration with: Pogon - Zagreb Center for Independent Culture and Youth