ÄSTHETIKEN und Krisen / AESTHETICS and Crisis

ÄSTHETIKEN und Krisen / AESTHETICS and Crisis


#5 |13.05.2024 |

Following on from our first session on poetic writing, where we read and discussed Lisa Robertson’s essay “Time in the Codex", we would like to read Clarice Lispector's text "Report on the Thing" together. We are interested in the relationship between language and objects and ways of writing, which, as in Lispector, include objecthood in a way that differs from everyday language, scientific approaches, or philosophical discourse.

We are open to your suggestions that would be interesting to discuss in conversation with Lispector and her "Report on the Thing". Further writers that we could compare with Lispector’s concept of the thing are Francis Ponge, Moyra Davey, Rilke, or the "material-aesthetic" in Ranjan Ghosh.

with Anna R. Winder and Stephan Geene

Text: Clarice Lispector, Report on the Thing, on website of VICE here.

Wir möchten gerne an unsere erste Veranstaltung zum poetischen Schreiben anschließen und Clarice Lispectors Text "Bericht vom Ding" gemeinsam lesen. Es geht uns auch um das Verhältnis von Sprache und Gegenständen und den Schreibweisen, die, wie bei Lispector, Dinglichkeit anders einschließen als die Alltagssprache, als wissenschaftliche Zugriffe oder philosophische Diskurse.

Wir sind offen für Vorschläge, die Lispector und ihren "Bericht vom Ding" weiter diskutieren lassen, könnten es auch vergleichen mit Dingkonzeptionen bei Francis Ponge, Moyra Davey, Rilke oder der "material-aesthetic" bei Ranjan Ghosh.

Die deutsche Übersetzung verlinken wir in einigen Tagen.


Ästhetiken und Krisen

Mirja Reuter, Karolin Meunier, Marietta Kesting, Çiğdem Inan, Stephan Geene, Anna R. Winder und Florian Gass

Das Colloquium ist für alle Studierende offen und findet einmal im Monat statt. Es ist gedacht als gemeinsames Nachdenken über künstlerische Tätigkeiten und ihre Bedingungen; vielleicht aber auch einfach Nachdenken über Formen, Welt zu beschreiben. Für die nächsten Sitzungen werden die Texte von b_books vorgeschlagen und mit jeweils unterschiedlichen Mitgliedern von b_books gelesen und besprochen. Vorschläge und mitgebrachte Texte aller Studierender sind sehr willkommen.        

Wir haben die Veranstaltung Ästhetiken und Krisen genannt, weil es auch uns beschäftigt, wie sich die  gegenwärtigen, oft bedrohlich erscheinenden Rahmenbedinungen von Gesellschaft, Politik und Klima zu den eigenen Fragen verhalten, welchen Beitrag unsere ästhetische Formen leisten: was zeigen sie, was modifizieren sie, was lassen sie nicht sehen?

past meetings :

22.01.2024, 18 Uhr, 6 p.m., dffb

"Unable to achieve broad recognition in my lifetime, I laboured in obscurity until my death last year" (Sharon Kivland) oder  "Dieses Tier heisst Bewusstseinserweitung" (Monika Rinck) mit Anna R. Winder, Stephan Geene

If you would like to read the texts in advance you can download them  here but is it not mandatory.

Lisa Robertson, Time in the codex

Ingeborg Bachmann, Die gestundete Zeit

Cecilia Vicuña, Language is a Migrant

Monika Rinck, Dieses Tier heißt Bewusstseinserweiterung

Thomas Brasch, Asche und Diamant

Geh nicht weg, sagte sie.
Der blaue Himmel im Kino und die Welt die nicht
mehr ist, wie sie nie war.

We are observing a new interest around us in poetry, in various forms of poetic expression, in intuitive lyric speech, in reading, in the performance of texts and listening, and the importance of words, rhythm and ambiguity. -- Interestingly, not only in the arts but also in theory and political activism.

What possibilities does the poetic form open up? The nearness of poetry to song and voice, modes of speaking and of listening (“if we had a keen vision and feeling of all ordinary human life, it would be like hearing the grass grow and the squirrel’s heart beat, and we should die of that roar which lies on the other side of silence.” George Eliot). Poetry speaks from a place of experience, of intensities, rather than one of knowledge and the already-agreed-upon; does it nevertheless enable something common?

We’re presenting a selection of positions and practices and suggest reading texts by e.g. Lisa Robertson, Mira Mattar, Moyra Davey, Monika Rinck, Thomas Brasch, Cecilia Vicuña, Rainer Maria Rilke.If you would like to read the texts in advance you can download them here but is it not mandatory.

Wir beobachten um uns herum ein neues Interesse an Poesie, an ganz unterschiedlichen Formen poetischer Ausdrucksweisen, am Tastenden lyrischen Sprechens, am Lesen, am Performen von Text und Hören, und die Bedeutung der Wortwahl, von Rhythmus, Mehrdeutigkeit -- und interessanterweise in der Kunst ebenso wie in Theorie und politischem Aktivismus.

Welche Möglichkeiten eröffnet die poetische Form? Die Nähe der Poesie zum Gesang und zur Stimme, verschiedene Arten des Sprechens und des Zuhörens (“if we had a keen vision and feeling of all ordinary human life, it would be like hearing the grass grow and the squirrel’s heart beat, and we should die of that roar which lies on the other side of silence.” George Eliot). Die Poesie geht von einem Ort der Erfahrung, der Intensität aus, und nicht von einem Ort des Wissens und des bereits Feststehenden; ermöglicht sie dennoch etwas Gemeinsames?

Wir stellen einige Positionen und Praktiken vor und schlagen Texte von z. B. Lisa Robertson, Mira Mattar, Moyra Davey, Monika Rinck, Thomas Brasch, Cecilia Vicuña, Rainer Maria Rilke zum gemeinsamen Lesen vor.

Aesthetics and Crisis #2

Autotheorie, Autofiktion

mit Karolin Meunier

26. Februar 2024

Yesterday, simultaneously reading Marguerite Duras: "To be without [a] subject for a book . . . is to find yourself, once again, before a book." And John McPhee: "You begin with a subject, gather material, and work your way to structure from there. . . . Not the other way around.“ (Moyra Davey)

[…] “autotheory” does not refer to a “theory of the self” so much as to theory that emerges from the self. (Lauren Fournier)

Autotheory, autofiction, fictocriticism ... What are these terms circulating in art, film, literature and theory all about? What are the limits of such first-person narratives? Starting from one's own experience, digressing from or reinventing oneself, distancing oneself from the self; the biographical as material for theory formation; the momentum of writing and the the impact of writing on one’s own reality; the body as resistance within a text.

There are many perspectives and examples to discuss these questions. Our starting point is the practice of artist Moyra Davey, who often includes her texts as a voice-over in her films that also show her reading. We will watch her film "Hemlock Forest" (42 min, 2016, USA) and see where this leads us. The script of the film is attached.

If you would like to read the texts in advance you can download them, but is it not mandatory.

Moyra Davey, Hemlock Forest LINK

Lauren Fournier, Autotheory as Feminist Practice in Art, Writing, and Criticism (excerpt) LINK

# 3   18.3.2023

Anthropozän und Bildproduktion // Anthropocene and Image Production, mit /with Marietta Kesting

For quite some time the discourse and image production around the topics of the Anthropocene, extinction of species, and climate change has accelerated and may even follow similar extractivist logic as the phenomena it wants to criticize. So what can aesthetics, media and related theory formation do? How can we deal with the fact that we cannot escape our entanglement with extractivist practices and conditions and still aim to tell other stories or work differently?

The following texts are here, if you would like to read them in advance, you can download them, but it is not mandatory for participation


+ Kathryn Yusoff, A Billion Black Anthropocenes or none, Introduction DOWNLOAD LINK

+ Svitlana Matviyenko, Pollution as Weapon of War DOWNLOAD LINK

+ ‘Because you think of yourself as totally integrated in bios and you’ve forgotten that you totally rely on other
life forms’: In conversation with Ursula Biemann and Timothy Morton DOWNLOAD LINK

and we will watch a few short films, amongst them Pumzi 2009 by Wanuri Kahui

In addition, Luana Almeida Pees suggested to read:
Davi Kopenawa, “The Xapiri’s Gaze”, in id. The Falling Sky. DOWNLOAD LINK


<Matviyenko - Pollution as a Weapon of War.pdf>


#4 |15.04.2024 | Çiğdem Inan & Dalia Neis

From ‘Revolutionin Minor Key’ to ‘MinorDetail’: Fugitive Archives, Ontologies of Dispossession, and Poetics of Resistance

Drawing on Saidiya Hartman’s ‘Venus in TwoActs’ (2008), ‘Wayward Lives, Beautiful Experiments: Intimate Histories of Social Upheaval’ (2019), and Adania Shibli’s political novel ‘Minor Detail’ (2020), this session explores the affective mode by which fugitive forms of memory, sociality, and knowledge are produced in zones of racial violence and social wounding, introducing alternative ways of feeling, memory, and resistance. In Adania Shibli’s ‘Minor Detail’, literature becomes the liminal space for reimagining language in the face of the unspeakable and for those who cannot speak. Saidiya Hartman opens up a speculative reconstruction of the past and its history of violence through innovating concepts such as ‘Critical Fabulation’and ‘Terrible Beauty’. Bringing both positions together, we want to discuss how grief, loss, and trauma are linked with reflections on the politics of memory through an aesthetics of resistance. Together, we will investigate how such affective modes are articulated as social poetry, and how a reparative perspective potentially emerges through cracking the forms of politics, poetics, and aesthetic forms.

Shibli, Adania (2022): Eine Nebensache, Berlin: Berenberg Verlag.

Hartman, Saidiya (2022): Venus in zwei Akten, S. 85–116.
In:(dies.): Diese bittere Erde (ist womöglich nicht, was sie scheint),Berlin: August Verlag.

Hartman, Saidiya (2022): Aufsässige Leben, schöne Experimente. Vonrebellischen schwarzen Mädchen, schwierigen Frauen und radikalenQueers (Abschnitte ‘Revolution in Moll’ und ‘Aufsässig. Einkurzer Eintrag über das Mögliche’), Berlin: Ullstein Verlag, S.265–275 + S. 277–278.

Shibli, Adania (2020): Minor Detail, London:Fitzcaraldo Editions.

Hartman, Saidiya (2008): Venus in Two Acts. In:Small Axe, Number 26 (Volume 12, Number 2), June 2008, pp. 1-14.

Hartman, Saidiya (2019): Wayward Lives, BeautifulExperiments: Intimate Histories of Social Upheaval (chapters‘Revolution ina Minor Key’ and ‘Wayward:A Short Entry on the Possible’), W.W. Norton, pp. 217-227 and pp. 227-9.

Alle Text zum Download