The new issue of MaHKUscript will rearticulate the discussion about the situation and position of artistic research. Not only as a critical examination of the findings of the present “Research Decade,” but specifically as a quest for future scenarios and associated parameters and definitions. To give an impetus to such reflection, MaHKUscript will take the conceptualization of a post-research turn as point of departure.
Similar to how Paul Feyerabend once questioned the dominance of rational knowledge in Farewell to Reason, this publication will in turn question the dominant trend of academisized research that has reigned now for at least ten years. Today as well the danger lurks that “artistic research” will be encapsulated by academic and institutional stereotypes which will seriously impede creativity and artistic reflection. Could a “farewell” to such gentrified research produce novel forms of articulation while proceeding from the perspective of fine art?
MaHKUscript’s editorial proposal intends to provide a clear and constructive contribution to such re-thinking and re-evaluation. It departs from the assumption that the current ontological impasse – the continued repetition of the academic question “What is artistic research?” – could be overcome by formulating a proposition based on a recomposition of three conceptual spaces (creative practice, artistic thinking, curatorial strategies) that intersect when artistic research takes place.
By using such a characterization the publication clearly takes a distance from a series of misconceptions that have accumulated around the concept of artistic research over the past decade. Through preformed, static categories, these misconceptions seem to reduce research in the arts to a noun, whereas the above-described dynamics and the related provisional quality rather ask for the dynamics of a verb. But above all, these misconceptions result from the absolutization of one of the three – intrinsically and inseparably connected – conceptual spaces.
Posted on 28 Feb 2020
The current logic of a result-driven culture and its neoliberal focus on free market mechanisms support a flat worldview that continuously demands transparency and visibility. Thus it produces a horizontalist world that—with its twitter-democracy and the ubiquitous blogosphere—brings a “net culture” into being that leaves no room for rest, concentration, contemplation, creation and experiment.
In such a worldview, knowledge is instrumentalized and consequently produces patterns of thought homogenized through a disciplining dispositive that uses neoliberal concepts such as expert-knowledge, stakeholders, and knowledge transfer as its formatting requirements. The planet that emerges is shaped by globalized—cognitive—capitalism where verticalist perspectives such as reflexivity, imagination, and historic profundity are reduced as much as possible to horizontalist frameworks, thus leaving them very little room.
In its interaction with human existence, art, like philosophy, is virtually the ontological purveyor of verticality. It is therefore up to art to critically map and investigate the current rather narrowed and overstrung situation, and to demand renewed attention for different forms of reflection that search for a more subtle balance. With this goal in mind, MaHKUscript’s 2019 issue "Whatever Speculation" will focus on a key-concept in the history of—artistic—thinking, i.e. speculation.
Nowadays speculation has been devalued to a one-dimensional economic meaning. It seems that speculative thought about future forms of knowledge and solutions to problems surrounding existence and social viability has made way for an almost self-evident resignation to the present moment and status quo—leaving a blurred view of complex issues that characterize the here and now. For that reason it is extremely urgent to reconsider different and alternative connotations of speculation and to bring them up to date.
For this fourth issue of MaHKUscript, the keynote author is Marina Vishmidt.
Posted on 05 Mar 2019
RECLAIMING ARTISTIC RESEARCH - FIRST THOUGHTS...
Knowledge as Production: Dialogue with Liam Gillick
Beyond Language: Dialogue with Falke Pisano
Sound as Knowledge: Dialogue with Samson Young
Research as Play: Dialogue with Ryan Gander
Becoming the Archive: Dialogue with Euridice Kala
Writing as Experiment: Dialogue with Sher Doruff
Tania Pérez Córdova
Posted on 14 Dec 2017