Global Capital, Post-Medial Art 2, April 29

The second part of the lecture series Global Capital, Post-Medial Art will be a shared evening between artist and writer Melanie Gilligan and Dr Kerstin Stakemeier.

Melanie Gilligan will screen and discuss her recent video works that deal with the economics and politics of the current crisis, the ensuing intensification of biopolitical governance and the financialization of everyday life. These videos are structured as dramatic miniseries, using fiction to grapple with issues normally left to journalism, documentary or academic study. Gilligan will discuss some prominent themes in her work as well as a new piece currently in progress.

Gilligan's presentation will be followed up by a short talk by Dr Kerstin Stakemeier who will speak about the end of capitalist progressivism. For a long time, autonomy, be it in art or in politics, consisted in a counter-movement to what was understood as an unstoppable capitalist progress. But how to counter a capitalism which is in permanent crisis? How to autonomize one’s own practice from a status of brutal standstill?

The lecture series Global Capital, Post-Medial Art investigates the relation between contemporary art forms, mainly installation and performance art, and the development of capitalism towards an increasingly de-regulated market. Implicit in the concept of 'contemporary art' is the idea that the borders between the traditional art forms – painting and sculpture mainly – are, if not completely abolished, at least considered unimportant. But contemporary art has not for that reason completely got rid of specific media. Rather it is based on so called post-media or in-between art forms such as installation and performance art. These in-between art forms must be understood in relation to the development towards a generic concept of art since the 1960s and a capitalist market which knows no national borders. How did art forms such as performance and dance reflect on their status as commodities and capitalist labour when they emerged?

To what extent do artists working in these media today continue to reflect upon this? The lecture series Global Capital, Post-Medial Art aims, on the one hand, to analyse the emergence of these traditionally experimental art forms and, on the other hand, to investigate their status and political potential within the framework of global capitalism today.

The lecture series Global Capital, Post-Medial Art is organised by Josefine Wikström on the commision of Weld.

Melanie Gilligan
is an artist and writer born in Toronto in 1979. Her work as an artist incorporates a variety of media including video, performance, writing, installation and music.. Her writings on art, politics and finance have appeared in magazines such as Artforum and Texte zur Kunst and in recent volumes such as Canvases and Careers Today (Sternberg Press), Intangible Economies (Fillip). In 2008 Gilligan released Crisis in the Credit System a four-part fictional mini drama about the recent financial crisis, made specifically for Internet viewing and distribution. Her recent serial video works Popular Unrest and Self-Capital are both narrative dramas that reflect on the state of politics in capital's current ongoing of crisis. Solo exhibitions include Kolnischer Kunstverein (Cologne), Chisenhale Gallery (London), The Banff Centre, (Banff), Presentation House Gallery (North Vancouver), Transmission Gallery (Glasgow), Justina M. Barnicke Gallery (Toronto), VOX (Montreal), Franco Soffiantino Gallery (Turin). In 2009 Gilligan received a Paul Hamlyn Award for Artists and in 2010 she won the Illy Present Future Award.

Kerstin Stakemeier
lives and works in Berlin and Munich, where she is junior professor for media theory in the centre for interdisciplinary studies at the Academy of Fine Arts. She studied political theory and art history in Bremen, Berlin and London, where she completed her PhD on "Entkunstung – artistic models for the end of art" in 2010. In 2009/10 she was a researcher at the Jan van Eyck Academie, Maastricht (NL), working on "Realisms in (contemporary) art". She worked a.o. at the Museum für Gegenwartskunst Basel (CH) and the Kunstverein in Hamburg, writes a.o. for Texte zur Kunst, Springerin, Afterall and Phase 2. In 2012 "Painting – The Implicit Horion" (Ed. with Avigail Moss) and "Anfang Gut. Alles Gut. Actualizations of 'Victory over the Sun' (1913)" (Ed. with Eva Birkenstock, Nina Köller) came out. In 2013 "Entkunstung – artistic models for the end of art" will be published with polypen b_books.

Josefine Wikström
is a PhD Candidate at the Centre for Research in Modern European Philosophy, Kingston University. In her thesis, supervised by professor Peter Osborne, she investigates the role of performance art within contemporary art and from the standpoint of concepts of labour in Marx and post-Marxist thinkers. Josefine Wikström has taught at Central Saint Martins, Kingston University and Konstfack. She also works as an art critic and writer and has written for Afterall Journal, Philosophy and Photography, Performance Research Journal and Paletten among others.