Estética fósil. Imaginarios de la energía y crisis ecosocial
2020 (On sale from October 21)
This book addresses the way in which the use of fossil fuels as a primary source of energy during the Industrial Revolution, and the development of thermodynamic physics in the mid-nineteenth century, were accompanied by a series of cultural imaginaries that led to a productivist worldview in the relationship between humanity and nature. The energetic exuberance provided by the synthesis between coal and thermodynamic machines would guarantee the increase of social wealth, avoiding the repercussions of the new industrial capitalism on the physical wellbeing of the workers and on terrestrial ecosystems. The ‘fossil aesthetic’ that gives its title to the essay refers to the fact that the impact of this worldview is not only related to a series of ideological discourses, but has been sensibly inscribed in our experience of reality through the diffusion of a certain image of the cosmos. The book describes the effect that the imaginaries of fossils and energy have had, over the last two centuries, on various scientific disciplines and cultural practices, while critically challenging their validity in the context of neoliberalism and the ongoing eco-social crisis.
European Doctor of Art History. He is currently a researcher for the Ramón y Cajal Grant Programme (2018) at the Instituto de Historia del Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas and a member of the Faculty of the Independent Studies Programme at MACBA Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona. His published books include La Familia Lavapiés. Arte, cultura e izquierda radical en la transición española (La Bahía, 2019); Transparente opacidad. Arte conceptual en los límites del lenguaje y la política (Brumaria, 2015, 2016 and 2019) and La vida por asalto. Arte, política e historia en Argentina entre 1965 y 2001 (Brumaria, 2014). Among other works, he has edited Visualidades críticas y ecologías culturales (Brumaria, 2018).
This is the seventh volume of the et al. collection, a designed to propagate thinking that challenges the disciplinary frameworks of art history, philosophy and the social sciences. An extension of MACBA’s public programme that unfolds at the intersections between aesthetic and political practices, and which addresses an anonymous and dispersed audience: that thinking community that in the very act of reading, writing, studying and conversing becomes a power of future transformation.
The collection of texts included in et al. is an editorial project by MACBA co-published with Arcàdia.