1. Research Congresses

          3rd FORMER WEST Research Congress, Part One

          19–20 April 2012

          Academy of Fine Arts Vienna and Secession, Vienna (AT)

          1. About
          2. Program
          3. Video
      1. Thursday 19 April 2012

        Beginning from the “Formerness” of Contemporary Art

        Location: Secession, Friedrichstraße 12, Vienna

        Is it possible to think of so-called Contemporary Art as art—or an art historical period even—emerging from 1989 and developing in parallel to other hegemonic formations such as global neoliberalism? Could it then be argued that, in sync with the current seismic shifts in society, politics, and economy, it now also faces if not a dead end then a number of challenges that take it to task? Is Contemporary Art, as an iconographic source of the political architecture of the world of the last two decades on its way out so to speak, together with the system that made it possible? What kind of challenges and possibilities might then lie before us in the space of art in times like ours? Can we speculate collectively on how to move beyond the present confines of Contemporary Art’s practices, and begin articulating what can appear from its “formerness?” What are our responses to—and proposals for—the times ahead?

        Oliver Ressler and Eva Blimlinger

        Opening Remarks
        Maria Hlavajova

        An (Un)timely Meditation: Pointing to a Future Ecumene of Art 
      2. Friday 20 April 2012

        Location: Academy of Fine Arts Vienna, Schillerplatz 3, Vienna

        I. Organizing a Difference

        Andrea Braidt 

        Maria Hlavajova 

        Marion von Osten 

        In the context of a search beyond the confines of Contemporary Art, how does a difference get organized? What established and developing possibilities in the entangled field of artistic, intellectual, and activist practices are generating structures other than those that exist for research, production, and dissemination? How have the strategies of contemporary practitioners changed and how are new possibilities within and beyond the field of Contemporary Art constituted? Are new models of small translocal organizations already being created that are outside of the known forms of artistic self-organization, art institutions, and aesthetic disciplines?

        How Art May Construct 
        Ranjit Hoskote

        The Everyday Ruptures in the Dominant Order 

        Multiple Faces of Feminist Art Against a Neoconservative Backlash 
        Micro-politics of the Commons 
        aaa/atelier d’architecture autogérée 

        Simon Sheikh and Andrea Seidling 

        II. Speculating Forward

        The model of Contemporary Art has been taken to task not only for its complicity in the reality of the global neoliberal order, but by the serious challenges to it that come from within art. To what extent, for example, is the field still of relevance to the far-reaching practices of self-organized collectives? And how have these group initiatives changed the field themselves? What emerging propositions are being articulated in response to these modes of cultural production? How can we arrive at a deeper understanding of the possibilities at hand by looking at a set of concrete practices that function as meaningful interruptions of the business-as-usual model that has been established over the course of the last two decades?

        Observations and Questions
        Ruth Sonderegger

        The Expanded Field-Actors, Agents, Platforms 

      3. Saturday 21 April 2012

        Location: Academy of Fine Arts Vienna, Schillerplatz 3, Vienna

        Open Forum: In Place of Conclusions

        Led by Ruth Sonderegger (philosopher, Vienna), this open session includes both the contributors and participants to the 3rd FORMER WEST Research Congress, Part One. The session revisits the positions, statements, conversations, questions, and doubts that stem from the speculations about what lies “beyond what was Contemporary Art” in order to attempt to map the concerns and urgencies ahead of us. Instead of summarizing a set of conclusions, it is offered as a site of anticipation, as well as of collective thinking and action.
      4. The Registration Desk for the 3rd FORMER WEST Research Congress opens on Thursday, 19 April 2012 at 18.15 (forty five minutes before the program starts)

        Venues: Academy of Fine Arts Vienna, Schillerplatz 3, 1010 Vienna and Secession, Friedrichstraße 12, A-1010 Vienna
        How to get to there: Metro station Karlsplatz, and from there it is a 5-minute walk to Secession. The walking distance between Secession and the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna is 5 minutes.
        Language: English
        Admission: free (registration is recommended).