Jörg Heiser, “Crisis, what Crisis?! On the Uncertain Future of Art Criticism”

Jörg Heiser, “Crisis, what Crisis?! On the Uncertain Future of Art Criticism”

Detail from the poster for Fred Zinnemann’s The Day of the Jackal (1973).

Jörg Heiser, “Crisis, what Crisis?! On the Uncertain Future of Art Criticism”
e-flux Criticism talks

Free admission

September 23, 2023, 5pm
172 Classon Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11205

e-flux Criticism presents “Crisis, what Crisis?! On the Uncertain Future of Art Criticism,” a talk by Jörg Heiser on Saturday, September 23 at 5pm.

Crisis? What crisis?” is the title of a 1975 Supertramp album. On the cover is a man wearing sun glasses and swimming trunks sitting in a deck chair under a parasol, a long drink next to him. Yet around him is not the beach, but a gloomy, grey industrial landscape of smoking chimneys. The title is a quote from a conspiracy thriller called The Day of the Jackal (1973), about a far-right terrorist assassination attempt on Charles de Gaulle. The crises of the 1960s and ’70s are a premonition of our contemporary crises of the 2020s because they are at least partly the same: the striving for individual pleasure and gratification, if not “freedom” per se, takes place against a looming background of unhinged, extractive capitalism; of authoritarian, racist, anti-feminist populism; of climate catastrophe and war. “Criticism,” in the very root of the word, is defined by crisis: “krisis” in Greek means to distinguish and judge. So how do we readjust our criteria of judgment vis-à-vis not only contemporary art, but also the cultural landscape in general, if, for example, a billionaire can just buy and destroy one of the most important global platforms of debate, or Russia decides to invade and destroy Ukraine? But for art critics to even make these readjustments, they need to exist in the first place: so what are the rescue plans for an endangered species?

For more information, contact program@e-flux.com.

–Two flights of stairs lead up to the building’s front entrance at 172 Classon Avenue.   
–For elevator access, please RSVP to program@e-flux.com. The building has a freight elevator which leads into the e-flux office space. Entrance to the elevator is nearest to 180 Classon Ave (a garage door). We have a ramp for the steps within the space.            
–e-flux has an ADA-compliant bathroom. There are no steps between the event space and this bathroom.

Art Criticism, Crisis

Jörg Heiser is Director of the Institute for Art in Context at the University for the Arts in Berlin, Germany.

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