Our Keynote Speakers

SIMON CRITCHLEY will deliver the first keynote address on Thursday, June 28 2012 at 20:00 in the beautiful spaces of the ICI Berlin Institute for Cultural Inquiry, in the back of the Pfefferberg complex: map. Tickets can be purchased for a minimum donation here. Doors open at 19:00; the talk starts at 19:30 sharp.

Simon Critchley is a Hans Jonas Professor at the New School for Social Research in New York City. He has authored over a dozen books including the celebrated Infinitely Demanding: Ethics of Commitment, Politics of Resistance in which he argues for an ethically committed political anarchism. His most recent book is The Faith of the Faithless, on politics, religion and violence. He has been actively involved in the Occupy Wall Street protests in Zuccotti Park.

Critchley’s talk is entitled  SHITISFUCKEDUPANDBULLSHIT:  A short discourse on the consequences of the separation of power and politics. Power is the ability to get things done. Politics is the means to get those things done. The fact is that today politics and power have fallen apart in liberal democracy. We know this. We feel this viscerally.  And every day brings new evidence that confirms this view. We live with a generalized sense of fear, a feeling that I am not in control and that nothing and no one is in control either. The disaffection with normal politics particularly among the young is vast and something else has taken shape, something at once exciting and frightening. We could be in the early stages of a perfect storm.

The talk will be followed by a wine reception on the glorious rooftop terrace of the ICI.

On Saturday, June 30 2012, HITO STEYERL will deliver our second keynote on at 19:00 in the IMPORT Projects space.

Hito Steyerl has produced a variety of work as a filmmaker and author in the field of essayist documentary video. Her principal topics of interest are media and the global circulation of images. In 2004 she participated in Manifesta 5, The European Biennial of Contemporary Art. She also participated in documenta 12, Kassel 2007, Shanghai biennial 2008, and Gwangju and Taipeh biennials 2010 and was the subject of numerous solo exhibitions throughout Europe. Steyerl holds a PhD in Philosophy, is a professor for media art at the University of Arts Berlin and has taught film and theory at Goldsmiths College and Bard College, Center for Curatorial Studies.

Hito Steyerl, Security Officer Ron Hicks, 2012. Single channel video, in progress.

Hito Steyerl, Security Officer Ron Hicks, 2012. Single channel video, in progress.

Steyerl’s talk is entitled ART AS OCCUPATION 2.0:
What sort of occupation is art? Why are our lives occupied and exploited by and even as art while being evacuated of labour, wages and leisure? What sort of different occupations are there in the artfield? How does the militarisation of everyday life and information technologies reflect within these occupations?  What are the traces of military occupation, intensified surveillance and financial instability within the internal structures of the artfield itself? (as opposed to the white cube display of political scenarios as cheap ready mades).