Workshop intended for artists, art critics and students in their final year of Fine Arts, Humanities, Film or Art Criticism studies.

Workshop's design: Debate sessions based on readings of selected texts, viewing of film material and the practical experiences of participants.

"In view of the inhuman situation, the only thing an artist can do is continuously raise the level of difficulty of art". This is what is said at least twice by the circus director, Leni Peickert, in the script Artists Under the Big Top: Perplexed by Alexander Kluge. The speaker is the director of a new circus who, trying to remain faithful to his commitment to utopia, says: "I want to change the circus because I like it".
"Because you like it you will not be able to change it. This is because love is a conservative trend".
Leni Peickert: "That is not true".
This negation is what fundamentally concerns him. Maintaining complexity, raising the level of difficulty of the arts, is the best way to maintain his intention to clarify: "Utopia is constantly improving itself while we wait for it". And, "there, where you cannot love, is where it does not stop".
The improvement of one's personal utopia, understood here as an inconclusive and related process of desire, and not without certain risk, with love, goes against those who "in view of the inhuman situation" always call for what Jacques Rancière defined as a code of ethics for art. This is the problem of realism. For the French author, Kluge's unresolved endeavour to create a new circus, on the contrary, would correspond to an aesthetic system, the one he proposes as valid. When a philosopher who is radically obsessed with égalité looks down on the didactic priority by which the code of ethics (that of realism) is directed, he contradicts the notion that education is a guarantee for the universal enjoyment of art. We are speaking here of equality: the idea that its origin should be grounded in truth, and that a direct and explainable utility within that representation of the truth and its consequences should be its purpose. Therefore, the problem is the impossibility of reaching this radical equality with the spectator as a spectator. The answer to this is given by Kluge through the words of our circus director, "this means that the spectators all have to change into collaborators".
Asier Mendizabal

Asier Mendizabal "Cinema", 1999


From 25 to 29 February, from 6 to 9 pm
MACBA Public Programs
Fax. (+34) 93 412 46 02
programespublics [at] macba [dot] cat