Marco Scotini, Elisabetta Galasso (eds.): Politics of Memory: Documentary and Archive (2017)

1 August 2019, dusan

“The anthology Politics of Memory aims to investigate the document as such, as an objective trace left by events, as material proof or the creation of reality – the strategies with which they transform a state of memory into State memory, those by means of which a historical removal is enacted, those, ultimately, in which there is an attempt to challenge permanent or temporary amnesia, opening up to the future. The artists and filmmakers contributing to this publication represent the most advanced area on an international scale of a research that inaugurates a new relationship between artistic practices and the documentary.

This publication brings together a cycle of conferences held between 2009 and 2013 at NABA – Nuova Accademia di Belle Arti Milano by international artists and film-makers. It is the result of a multi-year research project promoted by the Visual Arts Department and, more specifically, the MA in Visual Arts and Curatorial Studies. This program is aimed at encouraging the comparison of international artistic experiences that have investigated forms of documentary making and archiving, beginning with the subject of memory seen as a critical exercise and practice of resistance.”

Contributions by John Akomfrah, Eric Baudelaire, Ursula Biemann, Harun Farocki, Yervant Gianikian and Angela Ricci Lucchi, Khaled Jarrar, Lamia Joreige, Gintaras Makarevičius, Angela Melitopoulos, Deimantas Narkevičius, Lisl Ponger, Florian Schneider, Eyal Sivan, Hito Steyerl, Jean-Marie Teno, Trinh T. Minh-ha, Wendelien van Oldenborgh, Clemens von Wedemeyer, Mohanad Yaqubi and Reem Shilleh.

Publisher Archive Books, Berlin, 2017
ISBN 3943620336, 9783943620337
237 pages

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M. NourbeSe Philip: Zong! (2008)

26 August 2017, dusan

“A haunting lifeline between archive and memory, law and poetry

In November, 1781, the captain of the slave ship Zong ordered that some 150 Africans be murdered by drowning so that the ship’s owners could collect insurance monies. Relying entirely on the words of the legal decision Gregson v. Gilbert—the only extant public document related to the massacre of these African slaves—Zong! tells the story that cannot be told yet must be told. Equal parts song, moan, shout, oath, ululation, curse, and chant, Zong! excavates the legal text. Memory, history, and law collide and metamorphose into the poetics of the fragment. Through the innovative use of fugal and counterpointed repetition, Zong! becomes an anti-narrative lament that stretches the boundaries of the poetic form, haunting the spaces of forgetting and mourning the forgotten.”

Publisher Wesleyan University Press, Middletown, CT, and Mercury Press, Toronto, 2008
Wesleyan Poetry series
ISBN 9780819568762, 0819568767
xii+211 pages

Reviews: Tyrone Williams (African Am Rev, 2009), Helen Klonaris (sx salon, 2011).
Commentary: Fred Wah (Jacket2, 2013), Janet Neigh, Phanuel Antwi and Veronica Austen, M. NourbeSe Philip, Evie Shockley, Mecca Jamilah Sullivan (Jacket2, 2013), Jenny Sharpe (Interventions, 2014).
Interview: Paul Watkins (Toronto Rev Books, 2014).

Companion website
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Philip reading from Zong! (audio, 2007-2016)

Writing and Unwriting (Media) Art History: Erkki Kurenniemi in 2048 (2015)

5 July 2017, dusan

“Over the past forty years, Finnish artist and technology pioneer Erkki Kurenniemi (1941-2017) was a composer of electronic music, experimental filmmaker, computer animator, roboticist, inventor, and futurologist. Kurenniemi was a hybrid—a scientist-humanist-artist. Relatively unknown outside Nordic countries until his 2012 Documenta 13 exhibition, ”In 2048,” Kurenniemi may at last be achieving international recognition. This book offers an excavation, a critical mapping, and an elaboration of Kurenniemi’s multiplicities.

The contributors describe Kurenniemi’s enthusiastic, and rather obsessive, recording of everyday life and how this archiving was part of his process; his exploratory artistic practice, with productive failure an inherent part of his method; his relationship to scientific and technological developments in media culture; and his work in electronic and digital music, including his development of automated composition systems and his “video-organ,” DIMI-O. A “Visual Archive,” a section of interviews with the artist, and a selection of his original writings (translated and published for the first time) further document Kurenniemi’s achievements. But the book is not just about one artist in his time; it is about emerging media arts, interfaces, and archival fever in creative practices, read through the lens of Kurenniemi.”

Edited by Joasia Krysa and Jussi Parikka
Foreword by Erkki Huhtamo
Publisher MIT Press, 2015
ISBN 9780262029582, 0262029588
xxviii+340 pages

Reviews: Amanda Egbe (Leonardo, 2016), Alessandro Ludovico (Neural, 2016).

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