José Luis Brea
The collision functional areas of culture and the economy: this is the most important sign that marks the history of humanity at the dawn of the 21st century.
We could see the first positive edge of this convergence-that there will be more functional gap for registries symbolicity producers, filmmakers or their "liberated", they call these witch, shaman, priest or artist. But we must never forget that everything worrisome involves merging records: first, that this collision occurs principally for flagrant appropriation of the powers of the cultural practices of investing the identity, create community, and identification produce imaginary through it-by the economy (a process already perceived by Debord and illustrated in the recent review of the "power brands"), and second, and no less worrisome, the tremendous and devastating impoverishment of life absorption spirit that entails.
The role of signifying practices, expressive and symbolic production in this context, on the threshold of the third stage of its historical development, then loads of great significance: they acquire a crucial responsibility, which is inevitably a political aspect: in Indeed, the stakes in its space settle in whose hands are not only the powers of identity construction and even the fate and quality of mental life, luck epochal spirit, but also the conditions of possibility of the establishment of ties a new social cohesion, it traces the undeniable experience of the ordinary-and contemporary construction.
Yet we are given divine the future (fortunately, no doubt), but we can speculate on it, outline the possible consequences of our present and maneuver (even slightly) accordingly. Jose Luis Brea, in the third stage. Statute of artistic practices in the era of cultural capitalism, makes a lucid diagnosis of contemporary art practices, the development of forms of cultural capitalism, industries of subjectivity and identity politics, and the threshold points us to the art scene in the future.
According Brea, we find ourselves in the era of cultural capitalism, in which the marriage of the economy and culture is transforming society and its notions of work, production and "life itself." In capitalism, cultural, human activity is directed to the production of the industry or of the earth, but the construction of subjectivity and social organization. In a time when the major axes of social construction and "life itself" are in question (family, religion, traditions, state, country, political parties ...), cultural industries ( consciousness industries) are erected powerful agents producing subjectivity and community. They manage information and knowledge, rather than objects, intellectual property, rather than material goods feed of "immaterial labor" (according to Toni Negri and his school), basically speculative and abstract, employing large segments of our society .
In this context, artistic practices have been absorbed by the entertainment industry and therefore its critical action, if any, is chewed and swallowed by the system, without causing many digestion problems. Under this model, the spectacle is served topped with high performance ratings and media, acting as a surrogate for reflection, knowledge and personal experience.
From here, Brea ventures to analyze the major challenge for the future of artistic practices, going to redefine the role of the artist in the context of the technological transformation of the uses of the image and is delivered and experienced. Thus the author points out a number of assumptions that may characterize this evolution:
1. No artist exists as such. The artist is a worker, a producer, a citizen whose "immaterial labor"-linked to affection, the sense, the desire, the meaning and pleasure to be considered as integrated into a production team. It is therefore essential to rethink issues of authorship and intellectual property. Revenues for the XXI century artist emerge from public circulation of immaterial labor.
2. No artwork, but works and producing artistic practices and knowledge criteria, not objects. The artist can not accept waste policy, the luxury and opulence.
3. The role of institutions and not be to create a "collection" or "exhibition", but to provide resources to facilitate the production, distribution and dissemination. That is, uncheck artistic practices of market trading economies, to settle at distribution economies.
4. These new devices should culture tend to act as "memory process" (from present to future), instead of "memories of reading" (from past to present).
5. The great challenge of artistic practices is therefore slip through the cracks of this cultural capitalism advanced stage, and bring devices capable of promoting critical attitudes and generate alternative models, recognizing the political dimension of this task.
6. For this purpose, net art is the culture that is, a utopia of communism knowledge: the economy is based on distribution, build online communities, non-hierarchical and participatory public settings.
So brilliant analysis, by Jose Luis Brea, contemporary cultural scene and its possible consequences, some obvious and plausible-pose other than a few uncertainties and, of course, many questions. On one hand, it is clear that the art market trade will not disappear in the short or medium term, and it is likely that this market will absorb resitue and try any kind of artistic practice, for it to be immaterial. Furthermore, hard-and following the same logic, cultural industries (in this case, museums, institutions, foundations, festivals, biennials and entire entertainment industry) transform, the overnight, its strategic plans for the occupation of ratings: outsells the past present and future.
How will these new artistic avoid succumbing to the courts of the power? How does the "immaterial labor", we deal within these megaindustrias, we are able to perform acts of criticism and self-analysis, without being ostracized or eyesore?
"Touch evolve," proclaims Brea. Probably the contradiction and instability san engines that allow us stay active and look to the future. Touch resist, right?
¿NOSTALGIA DE PRECURSIÓN?
Continue to open other processes to close, continue watching the historical flow as a linear project with a beginning and end that expands in time ..., are attitudes that no longer respond to the complex sensibility of our time. Installed definitely in the "digital culture" of the Network Age, the historical thread frayed ends in a simultaneity of events in progress "construction" and "then." It may be that the euphoria of what's to come eclipse what still remains and we still talking loudly. The last book of Jose Luis Brea: "The third threshold," illustrates perfectly the interests of literature critics in the third millennium and, incidentally, help me raise some questions ...
Since Walter Benjamin in the 30s predicted the demise of aura in contemporary art, which we thought was definitely confirmed with the Pop Art-thanks to the advent of new reproductive technologies, the expectations of achieving definitely an art freed from the yoke uniqueness of the original, have not ceased to be always placed on those same technological findings.
There is no doubt that in an economy like ours postmercantil of pure information flow, which, as noted by Jose Luis Brea in his book, 60% of economic activity is immaterial, the logical development of new strategies of cultural resistance -especially after the great impact of MP3-, could not be other than that brought about by digital technologies of reproduction. The hopes for a sustained cultural redoubt no sumptuary economies conditional on access to culture by the "possession" of the original, are necessarily tied to widespread adoption of "digital revolution in the arts" (Brea, 55) supported today , economically and intellectually, in the forms of copy-left.
Since Benjamin gave his first alarm, referring to the massive phenomenon of cinema, until the advent of the "electronic cultural capitalism" (Brea, 39), in which we are indeed, has always tended to think in a linear historical process in which technological advances have led progressively reproducibility disappearance of echoes auraticos towards democratizing cultural experiences.
Thus, means "mass" of obvious immaterial-like film, television, radio, internet, etc. - That facilitate the reception "simultaneous, collective and distracted" and denial of material experience of the place, are immediate correspondence in contemporary visual arts, especially through experiences such as net-art. Here the flat spaces and ignore network desjerarquizados outdated concepts of "authorship" and "ownership" and encourage others as "meeting", "flow", "link" or "transit" by the art event information becomes decentralized in virtual non-digital space.
Now, sharing and embracing this vision encouraging "culture coming" and still qualify Brea "threshold" upstart, consolidated only in coming decades, I have, however, serious questions to continue maintaining the linearity of the historical-technological process am referring. He who seeks Benjaminian started with the announcement of the disappearance of the auratic aesthetic experience by adopting means of mass reproduction, and that would culminate in the process of digital culture.
A quick glance at the contemporary art scene informed, conversely, of a different reality. This, again, underlines the ineffectiveness of genealogical linear progressions in the act of explaining complex phenomena. In other words, I suggest that perhaps rushed Walter Benjamin in his premature announcement of the demise of aura in contemporary art, perhaps this "aura" was never lost on the horizon and we revisit again and again, in case modified and / or reinforced in the very heart of the avant-garde art.
Certainly the avant-garde, whether in the era of "industrial capitalism", the "consumer capitalism" or "electronic capitalism", eager to belong priority to his own time, still aspiring to the same, namely: achieving, as trite as desired, equation-union "art / life". In this journey, the less accommodating art has always worked to exceed all bounds of a traditional market supported the "autonomy" of the work of art "singular". New art event begins, then, to claim a bodily experienced aesthetic phenomenology, emphasized the importance of 'place' and the contingency of context.
The site-specific work in its early formulation, would respond to this desire, focusing on the establishment of an indivisible ephemeral between "aesthetic experience" and "place", claiming at all times the physical presence of the viewer to the completeness of the work. Since then, the art did not need more than perceptions and static detained in the "now" but, more than ever, demanding the viewer's physical experience of "place".
Although the notion of "site-specific" permanently change their nature over time, slipping from immovable locations to "discursive vectors" fluid and virtual (Miwon Kwon), the experience of "place" is still high on the value of such manifestations. Thus, installation, performance, public art experiences in general ... shapes connected to their time-our time and in good health still critical content capacity, continue to shape its meaning around the physical experience of "Instead", fostering the identification "art / life" and updating therefore experience "auratic" the "here and now". But it seems that this has never raised suspicion in the review about the survival of the "aura".
Needless to say that reproductive technologies, since then, have little or nothing to contribute to the democratization process in the massive exposure of the copy, to ensure the authenticity of the artistic event to behold. Despite the currently roaming these art forms are subjected, aesthetic experience, intimately connected to a space and time-not static, but-certain, goes further by activating multiple senses of espetador- user, thus preventing a faithful reproduction of the original experience. No wonder, then, that with very little play methods appropriate to inform the artistic phenomenon, let's work stating "singular".
Of course, this has absolutely no valid reasoning applied to the multitude of artistic experiences intangible nature whose existence is reproduction. Here, then, there is no rift between original and reproduced work, everything is framed in a perfectly circular reproduction process. Today, intangible experiences around video-art, net-art, the music, art, film, art ... are an important part of the entire art that is occurring among younger artists. But we can not ignore that there is another, still important, still making use of reproductive technologies "time spread" generation, favor the opposite phenomenon: multiplication deny their experience towards a temporal, spatial, and "individual" character yet if you will, "pseudo-cult".
I think now, in the type of work produced by the artist Janet Cardiff, perfect to illustrate this dichotomy as installed in comfort between the two arenas, the "time spread" and "site specific" - in principle antithetical . While his "walking tours" through a technology "binaural" of latest generation, propose to replace the real experiences of the spectator-user, recorded the experiences of others, confusing the real and the virtual, the natural and the artificial, manage to create also a kind of aesthetic experience that favors autonomous personal contemplation auratic difficult to extrapolate, at present, any other medium that allows the reproduction and the massive display. Auditions multifonicas Cardiff can only be experienced in situ, in the "here and now"-expanded-, and special technology headsets.
As reported in his book Brea, another topic of interest to note in the advent of the "culture of process" is shifting the "File culture, reading, memory or recall" on which traditionally relies on knowledge of the Humanities . Clearly, the history of art-criticism-as also the discipline based mainly on the compilation and classification of images, has been since its inception, in the s. XVIII-present, fully subject to the reproductive technology of his day-printing, photography, video, audio, etc. - To generate reproductions, more or less faithful, of the artistic original. More obvious, yet are totally ineffective symptoms that have long presented to account for the phenomenon of contemporary art. Not only because historians do not have appropriate breeding methods that allow the knowledge of the aesthetic phenomenon and its subsequent incorporation into the annals of history, but because the very concept of history as mnemonic index, "theoretical" immutable truths, not exists, disappears once and for all the complexity of recursive correlation information in the "culture process".
Certainly, the questions posed by new forms of "culture coming" are multiple and absolutely priority in understanding the evolution of the artistic project, but these same update others, today, remain, though overshadowed, and deserve our close attention before any stage.
NOTA DE PRENSA
The third stage is an essay that reflects on the transformation of artistic and symbolic production today, from the changes introduced by the new technologies, the process of cultural globalization and the ongoing transformations in the relations of production, the new and essential role played in them by immaterial production.
In the test volume's title suggests that artistic practices move towards a third stage, in which the threshold already, which is characterized by the transformation ratio of the production processes of contemporary capitalism (as knowledge capitalism) and the place the new artist (as know-worker, worker immaterial) occupies in it. It also analyzes the shift that occurs in the new practices in relation to the horizon of contrast (which is no more or the academy or the culture industry, but the new industries of subjectivity) and its new place as driving practices effects identity with micropolitical crucial role in the context of the so-called third wave of rights (the identity).
Other essays in the book reflect on the purpose of an art of singularity (the singularity of the work unrepeatable uniqueness of the artist's producer, the uniqueness of the receiver ...), the new online art community schemes, the logic of visuality in new societies of the technical image, producing effects in the self clamping contemporary youth subcultures, etc..
The third stage is the fifth trial of its author, and is distributed both in print (published by the CENDEAC, Documentation Center and Advanced Studies of Contemporary Art) and free electronic edition licensed "creative commons".
For more information, please request via email at email en info @ eltercerumbral.net
José Luis Brea es Profesor Titular de Estética y Teoría del Arte Contemporáneo de la Universidad Carlos III de Madrid. Es director de las revistas Estudios Visuales y ::salonKritik::. Crítico de arte independiente, colabora con diversas revistas nacionales e internacionales, siendo corresponsal para España de la revista ARTFORUM. Es también director de las colecciones de Estudios Visuales de las editoriales AKAL y del CENDEAC. Entre sus libros más recientes destacan: Noli me legere. El enfoque retórico y el primado de la alegoría en el arte contemporáneo, CENDEAC, Murcia, 2007. Estudios Visuales. La epistemología de la visualidad en la era de la globalización, (ed.) AKAL, Madrid, 2005. El tercer umbral. Estatuto de las prácticas artísticas en la era del capitalismo cultural. CENDEAC, Murcia, 2004. La era postmedia. Acción comunicativa, prácticas (post)artísticas y dispositivos neomediales. Editorial Centro de Arte de Salamanca, Salamanca, 2002.