The Public in Question: The Politics of Artistic Practices

Academy of Fine Arts, Vienna
04.05.2007 - 05.05.2007
The Public in Question: The Politics of Artistic Practices

Today, the “public” is most certainly in question, and both public space and democratic processes seem to be increasingly under attack. The aim of this symposium is to explore the way in which aesthetic strategies have contested, and continue to contest the public realm. The first task is to critically assess the history of artistic engagement within public space, from the avant-garde tradition thatprojected art into life, to its Conceptual manifestations and interventions, and the art of institutional critique. What worked and what didn’t, and why? This leads to the second question asked by the symposium; what use do these strategies have today? Do they remain relevant, or do we need new tools? To answer we must analyse our present conditions, particularly the contemporary art world, its institutions, and their wider economic and political relations to the media and the rest of the world. Where, the symposium will ask, is the “public” today, and should it be defended?

Chantal Mouffe , Boris Groys , Renée Green Stephan Schmidt-Wulffen, Molly Nesbit, Marina Grzinic , Christian Philipp Müller , Sabine Breitwieser, Maria Lind , Gerald Raunig , Franco Berardie, Marion von Osten, Krzysztof Wodiczko , Diedrich Diederichsen , Alice Creischer , Sabeth Buchmann Brian Holmes , Marko Peljhan , Expósito , Dorit Margreiter , Stephen Zepke (Moderator) , Vasif Kortun , Okwui Enwezor , Françoise Vergès, Christian Höller , Andreas Spiegl