Friday, December 23, 2016

Would You Say That Your (Artistic) Practice is Political?

The various possible answers to the question seem scripted in advance – like we are arriving at this question too late.
In the second half of the twentieth century, the domain of politics was imagined to have shifted from a rarefied space (however historically constituted, i.e., the polis, the public sphere, etc.), to a decentralized and »capillary« operation within all spaces. This led to a significant blurring of boundaries, most clearly elucidated in the key mantra of Second Wave feminism: »the personal is political.« By the mid-1990s, however, locating the political was a process marked by a certain melancholy, even exhaustion. The Google Ngram below plots the use of the expression »everything is political« between 1800 and 2008

by Gavin Steingo