[spectre] The Juxtaposium / open letter to event organisers

Andreas Broeckmann ab at dortmunder-u.de
Tue Mar 29 18:28:18 CEST 2011

Dear Esther, dear friends,

thanks for an interesting proposal.

Just a thought: In 2005-07, we tried something similar in the weekly 
salon event at Berlin's media art lab TESLA, that offered the public 
an opportunity to speak with the house's guest artists or with other 
artists, curators and researchers who were living in or visiting 
Berlin about their work and research. Characteristic for this space 
of reflection and discourse in the confrontation with art, media, 
technology and science was a rather informal atmosphere in which it 
was precisely the unfinished, process-oriented character of artistic 
work that could be discussed. Repeatedly the points of departure for 
the salons were not 'faits accomplis' but rather questions from 
artists about their own work that they themselves posed to the 
audience directly. The fragility of this situation never led to 
superficial polemics, but rather to interesting and engaged 
discussions about the different dimensions of an artistic objective. 
Artists consistently praised these events, often indicating that they 
had rarely entered into such an open and constructive dialogue with 
colleagues and public in the past.

An important aspect of these meetings was that they happened in a 
small circle of people (rarely more than 20) and with a core group 
who knew each other and shared a certain level of trust towards each 
other. This trust - which i believe is more difficult to achieve 
among people who don't know each other well - is, i believe, 
essential for an uninhibited discourse.


>The Juxtaposium / open letter to event organisers
>Proposal for Juxtaposium:
>Several artists/theorists are invited as usual. But instead of 
>speaking about their own work, they present about each other's work. 
>Artists speak about other artists and their work. Theorists 
>foreground specific works of art, perform close readings of historic 
>or critical literature in the field, and/or reflect on the more 
>subjective aspects of their practice.  (or cross-disciplinary (many 
>artists also theorize)  Artist-theorist teams could attempt hybrid 
>forms of critical analysis and presentation. The point is to put the 
>work in a new perspective, and in new contexts. These new 
>interpretations should not be to illustrate their own work but 
>rather to expand discourse. They can be critical, contextual or 
>radically poetic. It will be surprising and fun, unsettling and 
>enlightening, tragic and fertile.  We will grow from each other and 
>nobody will fall asleep.

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