Hyper War art
Intermediated, a Personal Cinema collaboration with The Erasers and other Guests.
http://www.intermediated.net workshops and performances at the Mapping Festival 6-16 May 2010, Geneva
For the classic Greek tragedy “all the world was a stage’’ where the human actors were nothing but the pawns of gods, reflecting on the earthy scene the eternal cosmic game. But eternal games are “eternal’’ because although they can be perceived and played, they remain unfolded, in the same way that the eye sees the snake biting its tail, while at the same time changing its skin. If we could consider the sentence “all the world is a stage’’ as a snake that is changing its “skin’’, then the phrase could possibly appear to our minds as “all the world is a crisis’’. And then, all the players, all conflicting social forces, classes, and states are acting and clashing in “this wide and universal theatre”. A theatre, made by the spirals of the- always remained unfolded- snake, which nowadays hosts a spectacle entitled: the democracy of the snake.
The early admiration of democracy as the counterpoint of oligarchy is recently in decline while we hear more and more voices that denounce democracy as the main responsible for the inflictions of the actual state of things. So, we face this paradox: on one side we see several governments trying to export democracy in violent military ways and manners and on the other side we experience the presence of actors that ask for the limitation of political freedom and the elimination of the common values as e.g. equality and the rights of free speech and democratic expression. In the actual democracy of the snake, the only alternative seems to be a form of life, exclusively dedicated in the privatization of happiness. A life which is taking place far away of the process that seeks to expand the public sphere. We do not walk anymore on the path of a βίος we are just allowed to have a simple form of existence, based on our docile bodies that support the exercise of power in both the state and society.
The Intermediated project is a metaphor that reflects the tragedy (and the comedy) of the crisis. A crisis, that at this moment is identified with the déclassement of the country that ‘’gave birth to democracy’’. It is the crisis of the bifurcation that transpierce the body of the snake while it is trying to loose its skin. The bodies are on stage. They are formed and interpreted as an appropriation of Badiou’s platonic categorization of the contemporary social dead end and drama. A dead end expressed by the form of a triangle made from human bodies and their sounds and images.
The actress, the soldier and the businessman.
The actress: The piercing body, the drugged body, a body stupefied by violent sounds or info stream (noise, info noise), a trendy body, a body that is a screen, a screen that reflects market’s desires, a body commodity. A body trapped in the immobility of an infinite adolescence. A body that experiences sexuality without being a subject. A pornographic sexuality not in the moral sense but in the sense of a permanent repetition of inertia (the need of being constantly contemporary, the ultimate desire/order of the market’s economy). But also the contrary. A body that abstains, a body that is forced in abstinence although it is obliged to face the deluge of the flow of images, a body that is obliged to be at the centre of the spectacle. It is a pervert body in the sense that is détourné of its usual functions, which is to be the deposit of a subject.
The soldier: The son and the daughter as terrorists/anti-terrorists. The body, that craves in a desperate way so as to return to tradition. It pleads the absoluteness of the law, of the rules, to the point of sacrifice. It searches for the most immobile form of the law that we could imagine. The subjectification of this type of body is that of a martyr.
The businessman: Between the two (actress, soldier) we have the acceptation of the average dressage, that is the construction of the self as an object qualified for the universal traffic of all kinds. In other words what is said as “making a career’’. This time the body is disposed in a movement perceived as the most adequate to the external rules of the market. The body becomes a piece of this organised circulation and it is disposed to the market at the best possible price. For this, it must be protected, barricaded against the possible dangers that shares in common with the two other bodies, a protection act that is fundamentally reserved for the police. The body must behave as if pursuing a career has a meaning. The “career’’ functions like a stopgap for the no-sense.
However, the dead end is only the contemporary. Everybody talks about a “New New Deal’’. But how this deal will happen and who is going to perform it? Certainly, the deal we are going to get can only be as good as our capacity and our force to demand it, reclaim it and form it. History is up for grabs. We need a projection of our will for this; we need the right avatar, a new form of heroes that reflect nothing from that that heroes used to be once. What the metaphor of the crisis is reclaiming is the power to form new groupings, new communities that could respectively create an active well built frame of the principle of the common. Maybe the artistic production – we shall remember that the aesthetic experience is purely emotional – is one of the best means to attempt this rescue. After all, the collapse of the old rules and the anticipation of new rules, form the space where aesthetics and social resistance meet. The journey is over, the journey begins.*