I am another world: Artistic Authorship between Desubjectivization and Recanonization

I am another world: Artistic Authorship between Desubjectivization and Recanonization

Academy of Fine Arts Vienna

Zoe Crosher, “back cover, me – in my past life” or Curls and Folds Over B/W Time (detail), 2013. From the series “The Disbanding of Michelle duBois.” Courtesy Perry Rubenstein Gallery, Los Angeles.
November 21, 2013
I am another world: Artistic Authorship between Desubjectivization and Recanonization

November 22, 2013–January 12, 2014

Opening: November 21, 7pm
Conference: “I am another world” 
January 10–11, 2014

Academy of Fine Arts Vienna, xhibit
Schillerplatz 3
1010 Vienna

T +43 1 588 16 0


Hina Berau/Judith Fischer, Ursula Bogner, Dagmar Buhr, The Buried Alive Group, Zoe Crosher, Carola Dertnig/Lora Sana, Justine Frank, Mario Garcia Torres, Janez Janša, Janez Janša, Janez Janša, Barbara Kapusta, Matthias Klos, Maxim Komar-Myshkin, Warren Neidich, Roee Rosen, SUPER VÉRO, Mathilde ter Heijne, Unknown Artist, Laura Wollen, Donelle Woolford, Ronda Zheng/Ricarda Denzer/Isa Rosenberger

Curators: Georgia Holz, Claudia Slanar
Exhibition design: Seth Weiner

There are many reasons why artists appear as fictive persons or anonymously in a collective and create narratives situated between fiction and reality: as reference to gaps or blind spots in an otherwise discursively safeguarded canon, as a critique of institutional structures of authorship or their representational politics of normative gender roles and ethnicity, as protection from political persecution, and, last, not least, to demystify the inflated figure of the artist person. Collective authorship is currently situated on the fault lines of a deconstructed, postmodern concept of the subject and the anarcho-activist forms of resistance and critique of capitalism that may (and must) be organized collectively. These formations also refer to issues of virtual identities and the phantasms of their respective security policies. Narrative and documentary evidence still seems to be central to the construction of alternative identities and the camouflaging of their fictitiousness when it comes to revealing the claim to truth of both historicizing discourses and canonical formations in art history: historiography and memory can be reconstructed and reevaluated this way.

In this respect the exhibition attempts to trace several questions: Does the “death of the author” go hand in hand with the rebirth of the audience or the reinvention of artistic sovereignty? Is the desire to contest authenticity and to form collective authorship a means to resist the post-Fordist pressure of individualization? The artist-subject seems to depend on splitting up by means of the aforementioned strategies of camouflage and disguise in order to “survive,” as he/she already has to play so many roles and fill so many gaps in today’s capitalist society.

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