Author: IVC Author

Minor China: Method, Materialisms, and the Aesthetic

Reviewed by Hsin-Yun Cheng, University of Rochester Hentyle Yapp. Minor China: Method, Materialisms, and the Aesthetic. Durham: Duke University Press, 2021. 288 Pages. At first glance, the title of the book, Minor China, seems to counterintuitively belie China’s dominance in the global economic and political order. However, Hentyle Yapp temporarily suspends the political condition of China and returns China to a minor epistemological position in order to trenchantly challenge the proper noun “China,” which has been bracketed and seen as the Other or counterpart to the West. By reorienting readers’ attention to affective and molecular movements (proposed by Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari), minor methods rescue Chinese contemporary art from being assimilated by the global art markets, either in discourses or international exhibitions. Yapp uses the term “minor,” which resonates with Marxist ideas of social structuration, to reflect on theoretical assumptions entrenched in ideologies of liberalism, inclusion, and racialization (5-6). For him, “minor” is a strategy to undo the overdetermined Western frameworks that presuppose universal ideas and liberal languages in gauging minor subjects and non-Western …

After Douglas Crimp Questionnaire Response: Ann Reynolds

SHARING TIME IN THE ARCHIVES WITH DOUGLAS Douglas and I spent some time together in the archives, but not nearly enough time, as it turned out. Losing someone brings the constant sharing of things and experiences to an end, or at least, renders it one-sided. Alone with my own thoughts, I imagine how Douglas would respond to certain performances and films, or to some of the old letters, diary entries, and personal photographs that I continue to discover through my research, and within that imagining he often flickers into view. Douglas had strong opinions, tastes, and ethical parameters. We did not always agree, especially when it came to some of the artists and critics associated with surrealist circles in New York that I have been thinking and writing about over the past ten years or so. But he recognized and respected a love of things, even if he did not share your love for something in particular. One winter we agreed to meet at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts at Lincoln …

After Douglas Crimp Questionnaire Response: Shota T. Ogawa

Share an anecdote or memory you have of Douglas. Or, if you had the opportunity to share anything with Douglas now, what would it be? As an outsider to contemporary art, I can only write about Douglas in Rochester: not the New York City art critic, but a teacher and mentor who was unbelievably available and generous even for a student who he did not advise. I cannot forget driving through snowy downtown Rochester in his old Nissan Sentra (later, a black VW Beetle), listening to his Met Opera cassette tapes, when he would kindly lend me his car during the months and weekends that he would spend back in New York City. I know I was one of the many (usually overseas) students that got to use his cars and accompany him as his designated driver to and from the airport for his weekends back in New York City.   In Before Pictures, Douglas describes navigating between academia, life outside, and how each informs the other. Discuss leisure, and how academic work reflects personal …

After Douglas Crimp Questionnaire Response: T’ai Smith

Motherly Lessons I attached a longer, unedited version of the following text to an email I sent to Douglas on December 12, 2018, while he was undergoing radiation treatment. He was not well, and I hoped it would convey the extent of my love and gratitude. I had many times expressed thanks to him as my doctoral supervisor, but I wanted him also to know how much he had shaped me as a person. On February 9, 2021, while in New York, I visited him at his apartment in Tribeca to chat and to bring him butter pecan ice cream; he lent me a bootleg copy of Warhol’s Hedy for a project I was working on with a friend. This was the last time I saw him. At his memorial service in September 2019, someone mentioned to me that he read this text aloud at a dinner party with his friends around that time. I felt humbled and loved. In grad school, Douglas Crimp was mother hen, always surrounded by a gaggle of chicks, whom …

After Douglas Crimp Questionnaire Response: Kelly Long

Answer Louise Lawler’s question in October: “What would Douglas Crimp say?” Or, to follow the title of Lawler’s exhibition: Why Pictures Now? Pictures, for me, always—pictures, and poems (which hold on to ambiguity in the same way that pictures do). Pictures, because never once have I not stumbled over my words. Ever have I said not-precisely-the-thing-I-wanted and ached over the disconnect between my own heart and mind and mouth. Pictures don’t settle, and don’t ask us to. So, I can keep on trying. I don’t know what Douglas would say—despite all the essential things he said, I picture him listening more than I picture him speaking. But his marvelous hands would be flying! Imagine an alternative space to museums. Describe what this space might look like. Pathways forward, upward, and out. Choice, and the choosing. Jealously-guarded nothing. Encounters that cost nothing. Delight in one another (we’re all each other’s teachers). More places to sit, more places to rest. Willingness to give things up, and have it hurt a little. Share an anecdote or memory you …

After Douglas Crimp Questionnaire Response: Janet Wolff

VCS in the 90s It’s now thirty years since I arrived in Rochester, taking over as VCS director from Mieke Bal in the program’s second year.  I think I am right in recalling that Douglas came the following year – 1992.  Michael Holly as Chair of Art and Art History had brought us both to Rochester, and we worked closely together until she left (for the Clark Art Institute) in 1999.   I left (for Columbia University, and then later home to England) in 2001.  So for most of the 90s we worked together, the three of us.  We were a great team, with an effortless and easy collaboration and division of labor – our offices next door to one another, dropping in and out for chats and consultations.  It was the best job of my life, and I still miss it.  Now, of course, I also really miss Douglas.  We kept in close touch and met regularly in New York.  He also came to Manchester on two occasions on a Simon Visiting Fellowship which …

After Douglas Crimp Questionnaire Response: Peter Christensen

Share an anecdote or memory you have of Douglas. Or, if you had the opportunity to share anything with Douglas now, what would it be? In late August 2015 Douglas sent me a text message asking if I was back in Rochester from our summer recess. Douglas had begun to regularly inform me of when he was on his way up from New York to Rochester as our friendship had grown. My impression was that he wanted to line up social events so that he could be as enriched as possible in his stays upstate. Taking the cue, and excited to hear from him, I invited him over to mine to barbecue. He liked barbecuing a simple piece of meat and vegetables a great deal and early Fall in Rochester is a terrific time to do it. He obliged to the barbecue but he said he needed my help with something as well. Douglas was not one to ask for help so I was intrigued, perhaps even also a bit concerned. Douglas said that he …

After Douglas Crimp Questionnaire Response: Nicholas Baume

Douglas Douglas’s loving friendship over the past 25 years has helped to shape the person I am today. In 1994 I was a junior curator at the newly established Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney. We’d decided to program around the annual Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras Festival, which had become the most notable event on the city’s cultural calendar. I proposed that we present a keynote lecture and was charged with inviting an international luminary. Douglas represented the nexus of contemporary art and activism like nobody else – an epoch defining critic, curator, and writer who had brought to the AIDS crisis the full force of his moral courage, extraordinary intellect, and profound compassion. As a young man who’d lost some of my closest family and friends to the disease, which hit Sydney’s gay community hard, and as a curator inspired by the clarity and conceptual insight of his art writing, he was already a profoundly influential figure. Out of the blue, I wrote Douglas inviting him to lecture at the MCA. I didn’t …

After Douglas Crimp Questionnaire Response: Gaëtan Thomas

Answer Louise Lawler’s question in October: “What would Douglas Crimp say?” “I love Louise!” Imagine an alternative space to museums. Describe what this space might look like. As I translated Douglas’ essays into French, I tried to imagine the alternative downtown art spaces in which he was invested during the 1970s and 1980s. This world feels so remote but I feel I can say with some certainty that it was less controlled by money and the desire for immediate recognition. I personally enjoy spending time in encyclopedic museums and wish there were more palace-like complexes transformed into accessible, public, art-filled spaces. As a college student in Paris, I remember feeling most comfortable reading in one of the Louvre’s covered patios than in my tiny, claustrophobic apartment. Ironically, one my first conversations with Douglas – when we met in Paris – was about the Louvre, a museum he hadn’t visited in decades. A few years later, when the Buchholz Gallery organized a show around him in Berlin, we visited the Gemäldegalerie together (along with Jonathan Flatley) …

After Douglas Crimp Questionnaire Response: Juliane Rebentisch

His voice Douglas Crimp (1944-2019) One of the last conversations I had with Douglas touched on the question of one’s own voice in a public text. It was not about one’s own voice in the sense that is audible from any writing—even there, sometimes especially there, where authors try to neutralize theirs. It was about one’s own voice as a personal one, about moments in which one’s own experience is not only an implicit horizon for what one writes but becomes a public stake itself. For much of Douglas’s writing is characterized by a structure in which the personal, the personal anecdote, is not a mere adjunct to the argument but its very point of departure. “Mourning and Militancy” (1989), one of Douglas’s most famous public interventions during the AIDS crisis, was the first text in which he made a personal story the starting point for his reflections. The very moving recollection of how the suppressed grief over the death of his own father shifted into a symptom stands at the beginning of a plea for …

The Haunting of a Modernism Conceived Differently

by Matthew Bowman Another Modernism Douglas Crimp’s exceptional reputation as an art critic is, of course, in many respects intertwined with his early theorization of postmodernism within the context of fine art. Especially important in this context was the alloying of that nascent postmodern discourse with contemporary photographic-based practices that were becoming increasingly central to the artworld at the tail end of the 1970s. For this reason, this essay seeks to revisit the conjunctions between postmodern theory and photographic practice in Crimp’s early writing. And, in doing so, it shall highlight the relation of the postmodernism/photography dyad to a third term, namely the museum. Indeed, Crimp understands the status of photography as significantly contested within, and disruptive of, the museum’s systemic patterns of assimilation and organization. Several of these crucial writings are handily collected in his book On the Museum’s Ruins and to an extent my own essay serves as an opportunity to look back through that volume and highlight major facets of it.1 But such highlighting will also disclose complications in those essays—complications which …

Learning from Douglas: A Course Schedule

by Peter Murphy Art and the City: New York in the 1970s (Fall 2015)Monday 2-4:40PM, Morey 524Professor Douglas Crimp When I walked into the seminar room and saw the word “Cruising” projected onto the vinyl screen, I thought, with a budding sense of satisfaction, “This is why I’m in grad school.” For years, I had fantasized about the Hudson River piers that David Wojnarowicz writes about in Close to the Knives; now I had the chance to learn from someone who experienced them, someone who was there. Douglas quickly reminded me that while the pleasures found at the piers were invigorating (sex, friendship, sunbathing), there was also danger present at every turn (robbery, assault, murder) and every step (the wood was so decayed that it could give way). Our discussion of Alvin Baltrop’s photographs made this starkly clear: in addition to the alluring images of beautiful men fucking in dilapidated settings, there are also images of corpses and police investigations. This distant violence, as well as Wojnarowicz’s intoxicating way of writing about these dangers, informed …

Re-reading “Mourning and Militancy” and its Sources in 2022

by Theo Gordon In the opening paragraph of the chapter on disco in Before Pictures, Douglas Crimp writes of a folder of miscellaneous project papers he has kept from the 1970s, which includes an old, unpursued book proposal on the topic of contemporary art since Minimalism. Crimp was “pleasantly surprised” to discover reference to “the rubric of postmodernism” in this proposal, an indication that he had been thinking of art in such terms already in 1976.1 In a footnote he describes receiving an e-mail from “a British graduate student” asking how he came to use “postmodernist” to describe the artists in Pictures in the revised version of his 1977 catalogue essay, published in October in 1979:2 Since I hadn’t used that term in the original essay, he wondered, what had transpired in the meantime? When had I begun to think about postmodernism? Was it through my association with other October critics such as Craig Owens? Did I take the term from architectural discourse, where by 1978 it was used fairly regularly? I couldn’t remember.3 The old proposal reveals the gaps in …

Mourning, Militancy, and Mania in Patrick Staff’s The Foundation

Featured image: Patrick Staff, video still from The Foundation, 2015. Courtesy of Commonwealth and Council, Los Angeles. by Christian Whitworth He was a damned good-looking guy, all right—and in that outfit he looked rugged, too. I reckon he was about twenty-four, and so well made that he just escaped being pretty. His black curly hair tumbled out beneath the peak of his motorcycle cap, pushed to the back of his head. […] The planes of his face from cheekbone to jawline were almost flat, perhaps a little hollowed, so that he gave the impression of a composite of all the collar ads, fraternity men, football and basketball players, and movie heroes of the contemporary American scene.1 When the novelist, poet, and university professor Samuel Steward, working under the pseudonym Phil Andros, published in 1966 his erotic collection of short stories, Stud, he ushered forth a composite image of homoerotic fantasies, its model masculinities who, like the hum of their motorcycles and movie projectors, remain throbbing throughout. And if the seated man on the cover of the …

Thirty-six Copies of the Mona Lisa

by Cindy Hwang and Hua Xi Thirty-six Copies of the Mona Lisa is a digital poem about oil painting reproductions, Chinese national identity, and Western colonialism. When my friend Hua Xi approached me in December 2018 with an opportunity to collaborate—turning a poem she had written into a website—the critic and curator Douglas Crimp was far from my mind. But reading his acclaimed “Pictures” essay in a seminar, and then encountering InVisible Culture’s invitation to engage with Crimp’s legacy not long after, prompted me to reconsider Thirty-six Copies through the pictorial conceits articulated in his essay, which came to define the “Pictures Generation” of artists. After all, our work consists in part of sixteen pictures, including one of the most famous in the world, and lived for a time on the website thirty-six.pictures (“.pictures” being a surprisingly affordable domain). What follows is a reflection on how those pictures contribute to one’s reading of the accompanying poem, and vice versa, drawn from Crimp’s original insights. To be clear, the pictures in Thirty-six Copies are quite unlike …

After Douglas Crimp Questionnaire Response: Tara Najd Ahmadi

An Art Historian’s Recipe is a short film homage to art historian Douglas Crimp (1944-2019). In the 1970s, Crimp and his boyfriend attempted to publish a Moroccan cookbook in New York City, but their project failed and the book was never published. The film’s narration consists of excerpts from Crimp’s memoir, Before Pictures. The footage is a collage of 16mm films shot between 2017 and 2021. Central to the footage are scenes of Crimp preparing a tagine dish (from his unpublished cookbook) with his students at the University of Rochester. Directed by: Tara Najd Ahmadi Voices: Lauren DiGiulio Amanda Graham Jurij Meden Tara Najd Ahmadi Tara Najd Ahmadi is an artist and scholar, based in Vienna. Click here to return to the other questionnaire responses.

Apis Mellifera: Towards an Ecoaesthetics of Stillness

By Michał Krawczyk Humanity became the major geo-shifting force on the planet. The current epoch of the Anthropocene sadly affirms our disrupting engagement with the more-than-human world.1 The rates of endangerment among mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and insects, are overwhelming. Scientists have declared that we are living through the sixth mass extinction, although this piece of news is mostly unheard and unnoticed in our daily lives. Extinction as the backdrop to human life.2 A slow violence occurring “gradually and out of sight, a violence of delayed destruction that is dispersed across time and space, an attritional violence that is typically not viewed as violence at all”.3 Among the multitudes of agents enmeshed with us in multispecies relations, the position of Apis Mellifera, the honeybee, is instead highly visible. The honeybee is meaningful to us because our food production system is significantly dependent on their ecosystemic service of pollination. All bees belong to the order of Hymenoptera – ‘veil winged’ insects – which includes around 100,000 species, of which 25,000 are bee species. The social bees, …

A game of guess who that uses police facial composites

Guess who did the crime?: The Facial Composite Game

By Eliseo Ortiz (University of Colorado Boulder) In 1878, British psychologist Francis Galton wrote about the significance of photography in policing and incarcerating populations. Together with the famous jailer Edmund Du Cane, Galton investigated criminal behavior patterns by comparing the photographs of thousands of imprisoned inmates. Using eugenics as a guiding force to classify social behaviors, Galton developed several categories of criminals based solely on their physical features. Early on, this experiment consolidated a racist discourse fostered by the alleged truthfulness of photography. In the same way that the practice of phrenology called for measuring people’s skulls to determine mental traits and social behaviors, Galton superimposed series of photographs in order to find common physical patterns in criminals and concluded that “if criminals are found to have certain special features,” then “certain personal peculiarities distinguish those who commit certain classes of crime” as well.1 Galton inaugurated this approach back in 1878. Yet today, we are still experiencing the residue of a much more internalized racist discourse that justifies the persecution and systematic mass incarceration of …

Black Futurities: Shape-Shifting beyond the Limits of the Human

by Hazel V. Carby Please follow each link to images, videos or sound as they occur because they are integral to the narrative. They thought they were tasting the future (which for some peopletasted like cardboard and for other people tasted like sugar).—Alexis Pauline Gumbs1 For the Africans who lived through the experience of deportation to the Americas, confronting the unknown with neither preparation nor challenge was no doubt petrifying. —Édouard Glissant2 Accumulation She was dismayed when she realized that what she wanted to imagine, what she was struggling to bring into being, now seemed beyond her reach. Was it improbable or impossible? What could she dream in a present of imminent environmental catastrophe? How could she sculpt the contours of a future when the future, any future, had been foreclosed? She read widely and absorbed what she read, which erased the last few misconceptions to which she clung. She thought she had rid her home of plastic only to find that microplastics rained down from the sky. She kept chemicals away from her house …

What’s Haunting Black Feminism?

by Alanna Prince and Alisa V. Prince Two Black Feminists Go For A Walk On a Wednesday afternoon, we walked down Massachusetts Avenue in Cambridge, our hometown. We saw the center aisle of the street lined with older white people holding signs for Black Lives Matter and cheering each other on. Most cars passing by were honking. The sensation that we felt while passing by this scene is best characterized as when “Happy Birthday” is being sung to you, perhaps by people you don’t know very well. It’s directed at you but you just sort of wait it out awkwardly, unsure what to do with yourself until it’s over. Smile? Almost through the song and dance, a white woman walking toward us on the sidewalk stopped to share in the BLM hurrah with her peers. But moments after, as she approached us, she swiftly put her head down and ignored our hello. This is not atypical. It is a classic and frequent real life demonstration of the character of many white liberals. Their BLM fanfare …

Athazagoraphilia: On the End(s) of Dreaming

By Jerome P. Dent, Jr. In the introductory chapter of Freedom Dreams: The Black Radical Imagination, entitled “When History Sleeps,” scholar and activist Robin D.G. Kelley ties his own political engagement with his mother’s “dream of a new world,” an inherited belief “that the map to a new world is in the imagination.”1 In the remainder of the text, Kelley delves into the various political and cultural manifestations of this call to map out a social-political paradigm through the conscious act of imagining—a “nowhere” or “different future.”2 Thinking through what can be called the unconscious of this act of imagining and the dreamwork that is subsequently produced, I reconsider the consequences of this production.3 What if, as Anthony Paul Farley states, the production of the dream also “does the mental work that keeps the structure from falling apart?”4 Said another way, what if an end of dreamwork is to keep the dreamers dreaming? Though this may seem to effect a call to end the dreaming, it is rather a call to sit with that which …

Get Down: Funk, Movement, and the End of the Great Migrations

By Patrick Sullivan Funk is neither an essence nor a Black metaphysics but rather should be seen as a complex musical and aesthetic form that was created by Black artists to respond to and mediate Black experience at the end of the Great Migrations (1916-1970). Beginning in the early twentieth century and lasting through the postwar period, waves of migrating Black people left the South to urban centers of the North and West Coast, fleeing racism and pursuing economic opportunities. Their movement changed the demographic landscape of the United States. By the 1960s, this social movement began to wane. The promises of mobility were short lived. Black Americans who had come to northern and western cities faced racist economic structures: White flight, deindustrialization, limited community and educational resources, and the decimation of urban neighborhoods through expansion of the highway system. The decade’s series of riots index the social and economic disparity that Black Americans endured. Cities that once offered dreams of freedom became nightmares of social constraint. The end of the Great Migrations embodies a …

Studying With Hazel Carby

By Heather V. Vermeulen October 27, 2019 Dear Hazel, I’ve decided to write you a letter. When I think about being your student, I think first of our conversations—in office hours, over coffee, via email—so this makes sense to me as a form.1 You are not one for nostalgia, let alone adulation. When I read the proposed title of this special issue, my reaction was I wonder what Hazel will think about it. Specifically, I imagined you taking issue with “currency.” To my mind, that word most immediately evokes financial transactions and, in the context of academia, the commodification, marketing, and compelled speeding-up of intellectual labor. It conjures a sense of urgency, or a potentially-profitable crisis, something upon which institutions might capitalize. I thought of Barbara Christian’s “The Race for Theory.”2 (An obsolete definition of “currency” is: “Fluency; readiness of utterance; easiness of pronunciation.”3) It struck me that your work has never been current, if “current” means popular and of-the-moment—symptomatic of the times, as opposed to diagnostic, prescient, and seeking alternative futures. If I had …

Black Studies in Haudenosaunee Country

By Brianna Theobald Featured Image: Two young Mexican-American protesters at the 2020 Indigenous People’s Day rally at the Seneca town of Canawaugus. Photograph courtesy of Michael Leroy Oberg. In January 2019, the University of Rochester hosted a “Black Studies Now” roundtable, in which faculty members, joined by the distinguished feminist scholar Hazel Carby, assessed the current state of Black Studies at UR and imagined its future. The University of Rochester is located on the ancestral homelands of the Seneca nation of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy; today, the university sits within a few hours of multiple Indian reservations. Carby alluded to this geography—and the exigencies of place—when she emphasized the importance of thinking through issues around indigeneity as we chart the future of Black Studies. What does it mean to think through issues of indigeneity? What does the concept of indigeneity offer Black Studies? We might begin with a definition. In colloquial terms, indigeneity generally refers to the status of being original—or native—to a particular place. International organizations have added greater specificity, even as they typically avoid …

The National Archives

By Hazel V. Carby Featured image: Windrush Stories exhibition at the British Library, 2018. Photo courtesy of Leon van Kemenade. I dressed conservatively; I did not appear to be a disruptive or unruly researcher. I was indistinguishable from the others who arrived at the National Archives early in the morning and who stood, patiently, waiting for the doors to open while swans, graceful in their every movement, nuzzled the weeds underwater. As they raised their long necks and droplets of water rolled on the surface of feather, I became aware of my own poor posture and straightened my spine. We who left late in the evening passed through doors that rapidly closed behind us, and did not notice swans. We marched together to and from the Kew Gardens Tube station everyday carrying computers and clutching umbrellas, too intent on our work to acknowledge each other with more than a brief incline of the head and half-smile. After leaving the locker room and climbing the stairs, all similarity with my fellow travelers ceased: they seem to parse the same historical manuscripts …

Image of the Playsaurus, Clicker Heroes 2014 video game.

Wait Wait… Don’t Play Me: The Clicker Game Genre and Configuring Everyday Temporalities

By Oscar Moralde “We do not say that we have learnt, and that anything is made new or beautiful by mere lapses of time; for we regard time itself as destroying rather than producing, for what is counted in time is movement, and movement dislodges whatever it affects from its present state.”1 “The Time Machine brings cookies from the past, before they were even eaten.”2 Game genre, duration, and the flow of the everyday Video game aesthetics extend beyond the sights and sounds encoded into datasets for electronic processing into the audiovisual worlds of player experience. They even extend beyond the feel and feelings produced by the cybernetic intersubjective assemblage of player and game at the threshold of the interface, which has become an important site of inquiry for game studies scholars.3 Game aesthetics are strongly situated aesthetics: spatial and temporal contexts not only shape the meanings that players take away from gameplay experience, but they also determine the form and types of experience that unfold in play. For example, in Hamlet on the Holodeck, …

Untitled Dating Sim & Boy’s Curse/Boy’s Blessing

By Nilson Carroll Using game genre as metaphor, I put a digital avatar of myself in a series of vulnerable positions for Untitled Dating Sim. This work considers the abstractions of human bodies in games as more than just a means to score points through (a patriarchal notion). Players follow the logic of visual novels to create the possibility for love/connection rather than an exchange between player and game aestheticized by violence. Video games are made up of designed exchanges between player and game. It is up to the game creator to assign these exchanges moralities, in-game values, and meanings, to give them flavor, inject them with violence, cleverness, primordial energy. By their nature, visual novels are designed to be quieter and more contemplative compared to games in other genres, dealing more with relationships between characters than centering around violent action sequences. Stemming from visual novels is the niche Japanese genre of dating sims, which vary from the playfully absurd to the pornographacation of characters of all genders and ages1. Inspired by dating sims, I …

Animals

Reviewed by Katie Lawson, Curatorial Assistant at Toronto Biennial of Art Filipa Ramos, ed. Animals. Whitechapel Documents of Contemporary Art. Cambridge: MIT Press, 2016. 240 pages. Edited by Filipa Ramos, Animals (2016) emerges out of the prolific Documents of Contemporary Art series co-published by Whitechapel Gallery and MIT Press since 2006, an endeavor which has yielded 45 volumes, each tackling a particular theme, practice or concern. This particular iteration takes as its point of departure the long-standing inclusion of animals in visual art through time and across cultures, but moves beyond the mere representation of animals in order to look carefully at the rising interest to consider them in the development of new methodologies, modes of artistic production, and perhaps most importantly, ways of being in the world. Cats and dogs; slugs and cephaloids; bats and other unidentified creatures – these represent a fraction of the non-human others we encounter throughout the contributions to the volume. Ramos is a Lisbon-born writer, educator and curator whose current role as Editor in Chief of art-agenda and previous …

Amour and Love : On the Invention of the Concept of Love in Cinema

Written by Nava Dushi (Lynn University) and Igor Rodin (Hebrew University of Jerusalem) Preface “Then what is involved in love?” asks Jacques Lacan.1 We return to and begin with Love. The infatuation of the moving image with Love. From Thomas Edison’s eighteen seconds of frontal bodily affection of The Kiss (1896), to its sacrifice in Michael Curtiz’s Casablanca (1942), disintegration in Jean-Luc Godard’s Contempt (1963), spiritualization in Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner (1982), or desiring in Ang Lee’s Lust, Caution (2007). With Michael Haneke’s Amour (2012) and Gaspar Noé’s Love (2015) we encounter the question and impossibility of its cinematic rendering — a short-circuit that interrogates and circumvents cinema’s persistent impulse for imaginary abstraction, where every primal fantasy is eventually subjugated to the metonymy of language. Thus, rather than approach the films on the level of their purported meaning, we propose a reading that appeals to what the films do, the way they work, perform, function, and inhabit the representational field. That is, rather than approach Amour and Love on the basis of their negative difference, we would like to frame our discussion …