Should theories of art be related more to theories of the state (and its critique)? How do the proponents of contemporary art reflect (or deflect) the many elements of governance internal to art? To an extent, contemporary art as a space of social and political production could be considered a laboratory for the research and development of forms of governance—neoliberal, neo-Keynesian, neo-collectivist etc. However, although certainly busy modeling ways of conduct and subjectivity (what Michel Foucault has once dubbed “governmentality”), occasionally art may as well act as a mode of deconduct, of Ablenkung . The talk will attend to art’s entanglement with the ambiguities of “governance” and the revival of cultural policy in the name of the state.
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