Chris Robé: Breaking the Spell: A History of Anarchist Filmmakers, Videotape Guerrillas, and Digital Ninjas (2017)
Filed under book | Tags: · activism, aesthetics, aids, anarchism, autonomy, direct action, ecology, film, indigenous peoples, labour, marxism, media activism, neoliberalism, politics, protest, punk, social movements, strike, third cinema, video, video activism, video art
“Breaking the Spell offers the first full-length study that charts the historical trajectory of anarchist-inflected video activism from the late 1960s to the present. Two predominant trends emerge from this social movement-based video activism: 1) anarchist-inflected processes increasingly structure its production, distribution, and exhibition practices; and 2) video does not simply represent collective actions and events, but also serves as a form of activist practice in and of itself from the moment of recording to its later distribution and exhibition. Video plays an increasingly important role among activists in the growing global resistance against neoliberal capitalism. As various radical theorists have pointed out, subjectivity itself becomes a key terrain of struggle as capitalism increasingly structures and mines it through social media sites, cell phone technology, and new “flexible” work and living patterns. As a result, alternative media production becomes a central location where new collective forms of subjectivity can be created to challenge aspects of neoliberalism.
Chris Robé’s book fills in historical gaps by bringing to light unexplored video activist groups like the Cascadia Forest Defenders, eco-video activists from Eugene, Oregon; Mobile Voices, Latino day laborers harnessing cell phone technology to combat racism and police harassment in Los Angeles; and Outta Your Backpack Media, indigenous youth from the Southwest who use video to celebrate their culture and fight against marginalization. This groundbreaking study also deepens our understanding of more well-researched movements like AIDS video activism, Paper Tiger Television, and Indymedia by situating them within a longer history and wider context of radical video activism.”
Publisher PM Press, Oakland, CA, 2017
ISBN 9781629632339, 1629632333
Interview with author: The New Architects (video, 2017, 43 min).
Reviews: Beth Geglia (Interface, 2017), Franklin Lopez (Fifth Estate, 2017), Patricia R. Zimmerman (Jump Cut, 2018), Allan Atliff (Anarchist Studies, 2017).
Filed under book | Tags: · aesthetics, art, artists writing, film
“Jalal Toufic is a thinker whose influence in the Beirut artistic community over the past two decades has been immense—notwithstanding that, as he put it, many, if not all of his books, most of which were published by Forthcoming Books, ‘continue to be forthcoming even after their publication.’ In relation to one of these books, he wondered: ‘Does not a book titled Forthcoming suggest, ostensibly paradoxically, a second edition?’ Here’s the revised edition of Forthcoming, a book first published nearly a decade and a half ago by Atelos press.” (Series editors Julieta Aranda, Brian Kuan Wood, Anton Vidokle)
“I once wrote, ‘I am not able to find my thoughts without passing through his [Jalal Toufic’s] words, books, and concepts.’ Now, eight years later, things seem to have gotten worse (or better). Jalal wrote in Distracted: ‘— Are you saying this to me? — Also to myself. One should speak solely when also speaking to oneself. Only then is there a dialogue.’ I can also think of the following situation: ‘— Are you saying this to me? — Yes. And not to myself. And only to you.’ Or an instance in which the following is heard: ‘— Are you saying this to me? — Also to myself. One should speak solely when also speaking to oneself. Only then is there a duologue.’” (Walid Raad)
First published by Atelos, Berkeley, CA, 2000.
Publisher Sternberg, Berlin, 2014
e-flux journal series
ISBN 9783956790553, 3956790553
Filed under book | Tags: · activism, aesthetics, architecture, art criticism, art history, avant-garde, film, intermedia, literature, music, performance, photography, theatre
“This book is premised on the view that the idea of the avant garde has an increased importance in these times of global political crisis. Much cultural production today is shaped by a biopolitics that construes all creative and knowledge production in terms of capital accumulation. A different kind of culture is possible. This collection of writings, essays, interviews and artworks by many of today’s most radical cultural practitioners and astute commentators on matters avant garde mediates the different strategies and temporalities of avant-garde art and politics. Tracing diverse genealogies and trajectories, the book offers an inter-generational forum of ideas that covers different arts fields, from visual art, art activism, photography, film and architecture, to literature, theatre, performance, intermedia and music.”
Texts by Marc James Léger, Adrian Piper, Andrea Fraser, David Tomas, Catherine Lescarbeau, Hal Foster, Laura Mulvey, Bruce LaBruce, Santiago Sierra, Derek Horton, Christine Wertheim, Lyn Hejinian, Marjorie Perloff, Wu Ming 2, Nikolaus Müller-Schöll, Rabih Mroué, Judith Malina, Moe Angelos, Bill Brown, The Errorist International, Jonas Mekas, Thomas Elsaesser, Alexander Kluge and Oskar Negt, Travis Wilkerson, Evan Mauro, Mikkel Bolt Rasmussen, Gene Ray, John Roberts, Zanny Begg and Dmitry Vilensky, Owen Hatherley, Michael Webb, Mitchell Joachim, Beatriz Colomina, Boris Groys, Vitaly Komar, Victor Tupitsyn, Gregory Sholette and Krzysztof Wodiczko, Critical Art Ensemble, BAVO, Alexei Monroe, Jean-Hervé Péron, Chris Cutler, Charles Gaines, Jason Robinson, Sara Marcus, Cosey Fanni Tutti, Thanos Chrysakis, Kim Cascone, Marc Couroux, Thérèse Mastroiacovo, Chrysi Papaioannou, and Bill Dane.
Publisher Manchester University Press, Manchester, with Left Curve, Oakland, CA, 2014
ISBN 9780719096914, 071909691X
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