“The Critical Dissemination”:
10th International Symposium on Art Criticism

“The Critical Dissemination”:
10th International Symposium on Art Criticism

Catalan Association of Art Criticism

Courtesy Catalan Association of Art Crtiticism.
November 7, 2015
“The Critical Dissemination”: 10th International Symposium on Art Criticism

November 13–14, 2015

Arts Santa Mònica
Rambla, 7


Peio Aguirre, Nuria Enguita, Mark Lewis, Thijs Lijster, Aimar Pérez Galí, Irit Rogoff, David G. Torres and Stephen Wright

Curated by: Oriol Fontdevila and Joana Hurtado Matheu

Organized by: ACCA Associació Catalana de Crítics d’Art. With the support of Departament de Cultura de la Generalitat de Catalunya and Arts Santa Mònica. In collaboration with A*Desk and Institut français Barcelone

Where is art criticism today? Criticism is all over the artistic context—to such extent that, in terms of contemporary art, critical attitude has become an almost universal requirement. At present, there is no artist, curator, educator or even art institution that is not expected to take a critical position. This situation has also led to criticism spreading among all media and those processes related to the structures of production and art support, to such a degree that art criticism, as a genre, has practically disappeared.

Therefore, we place today’s art criticism between the emergence of an attitude and the redefinition of a genre, a context of dissemination that we want to address at the ACCA’s 10th International Symposium on Art Criticism. Over the course of two days, a series of lectures, roundtables and workshops will take place with the intent to shed more light on that question, with the help of some of the leading voices of the national and international art context.

Conference program

Friday, November 13: 
Criticalism: The Emergence of an Attitude?

9–9:30am: Opening presentation. Oriol Fontdevila, curator, writer and researcher.

9:30–10:30am: Criticism in the Sphere of Circulation.” Peio Aguirre, art critic, independent curator and publisher.

10:30–11:30am: “Curating and publishing as critical observation.”Nuria Enguita, event programmer, curator and co-publisher of the magazine Concreta.

noon–1pm: “To See What Happens When the Movie Camera Pictures the World of the Everyday.” Mark Lewis, artist focused on film and moving digital image.

1–2pm: “Sweating the Discourse: an embodied critique.”Aimar Pérez Galí, performer, choreographer, researcher, educator and writer.

4–6pm: Roundtable with Peio Aguirre, Nuria Enguita, Mark Lewis and Aimar Pérez Galí. Moderated by Joana Hurtado Matheu.


Saturday, November 14: 
Art Criticism: The Redefinition of a Genre?

9–9:30am: Opening presentation. Joana Hurtado Matheu, writer, curator and researcher.

9:30–10:30am: “Infrastructure.” Irit Rogoff, writer, teacher, curator and organizer.

10:30–11:30am: “The Enfranchisement of Critique: From Specificity to Compatibility.” Stephen Wright, writer and teacher.

noon–1pm: “Towards an ‘Espacement’ of Criticism.” Thijs Lijster, Assistant Professor in the Philosophy of Art and Culture at the University of Groningen.

1–2pm: “GREBNEERG.” David G. Torres, art critic.

6:30–8pm: Roundtable with Irit Rogoff, Stephen Wright, Thijs Lijster and David G. Torres. Moderated by Oriol Fontdevila


Friday–Saturday, November 13–14, 4–6pm

“The Crisis of Criticism”
Conducted by Thijs Lijster

What is the “crisis of criticism” that has been the subject of so many debates during the last decade? What are its origins? Can we even speak of a crisis if criticism is virtually omnipresent? This workshop will start with a brief historical overview of art criticism, followed by discussions on the function of the critic (e.g. interpretation, judgment, connecting the work to the socio-historical context), the use and misuse of criticism, and ways out of the crisis.

During the following session, we change the tone from a “crisis” to a “displacement” of criticism, and discuss several structural shifts in the field of criticism. What is, for instance, the implication of the shift from art criticism in journals to Internet criticism on blogs, discussion forums, etc.? What happens when artists or curators themselves become critics? We will try to make sense of what criticism can be or become in our contemporary mediatized and globalized public sphere.

“A Lexical Turn: Rethinking the Terms of Critique”
Conducted by Stephen Wright

The powerful conceptual vocabulary inherited from Western modernity presents us with an unusual paradox. The terminological toolbox is full; all the word tools are there, and in great shape too. But, somehow, they’re not quite the right tools for the jobs at hand: they are the right tools for a job no longer needed—tools calibrated to older conceptual edifices, founded in mainstream art-sustaining environments, aligned to practices (before they were even labeled as such) stemming from aesthetic autonomy.

This two-afternoon workshop will take a first stab at rethinking our conceptual vocabulary, assessing in a new light terms that we take for granted and might wish to retire, and considering terms from other fields which might be introduced into art-critical discourse. What we need, perhaps more than anything, is a retooled lexicon. This has nothing to do with drumming up some sort of new expert speak or coining neologisms, and everything to do with repurposing common terms from other lexical fields, other practices of knowledge.


General information and registration
Admission is free. To attend the symposium, you must register beforehand at [email protected]. To attend the workshops, you must choose one and send a motivation letter and CV to [email protected].

Participants to the symposium will receive a certificate of assistance.
Simultaneous translation except at the workshops.

Live stream at www.artssantamonica.cat / www.acca.cat.

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Catalan Association of Art Criticism
November 7, 2015

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