Objet Image: Revisiting the Interface

13.10 – 08.12.2009 / 7 – 9 pm @ No.w.here, London. Led by Fatos Ustek

The series on image as object will run over 9 weeks as 8 meetings and will be led by curator&critic Fatos Ustek. The seminar series will explore the shift from art in the age of mechanical production to art in the age of digital production, thus focusing on the methodology of image making the series will investigate our relationship to image today.

Objet Image does not refer to the objectification of image, conversely it recalls the image’s position in contemporary society as almost like object. The knowledge that the history of photography and film provides us, constitutes the framework of what an image is; whereas today its wide-range of usage and consumption brings a diverse world of realms where its production is no longer defined, perceived, criticized, approached as it used to be. The comparison of the 21st century image production with that of the late 20th century aims to articulate the transformation that is taking place.

The seminar series will be dealing with the notion of the image, in the framework of its production by contemporary artists and filmmakers. The seminars focussing on the moving image per se will be structured around reading current theories of film, media, and communications as well as diving into the aesthetics of production and its methodologies of distributing the sensible. The workshop is structured around a discursive and reflective methodology hence it will acquire the active participation in discussing the conceptual and visual material presented.

The weekly sessions will include reading material which will be provided to the participants a week prior to and are supported by a website where participants will be able to access and to post connected events, additional reading lists, files where they will also find information for each session.

Main Reading List:


– Jacques Ranciere, The Future of the Image, Trans. Gregory Elliott, Verso, 2007
– John Berger, Ways of Seeing, Penguin Modern Classics, 2008
– Walter Benjamin, The work of art in the age of mechanical production, penguin books, 2008
– Roland Barthes, The Semiotic Challenge, trans. Richard Howard, University of California Press, 1988
– Maurice Merleau-Ponty, The world of perception, lecture 6 : Art and the world of perception, Rotledge, 2004
– Hal Foster, The Return of the Real, MIT Press, 1996
– Nicholas Bourrioud, Post-production, Postproduction: Culture as Screenplay: How Art Reprograms the World. New York: Lukas & Sternberg, 2002
– Guy Debord, Society of the Spectacle, Zone Books, 1995
– Guy Debord, Comments on the Society of the Spectacle, Verso Classics, 1990

– (Post) Cinema, Daniel Miller, Art Monthly, July-August 2009 no 328, p 5-8


S: Screening / R: Reading / I: Introduction

Society in Spectacle
How can we articulate the shift from analogue to digital production in relation to their products? How does the overload of images influence us and our relating to them? What is an image, today?
Guy Debbord, Society of the Spectacle, 1972 first 20 minutes extract
DJ Rabbi, spectacle society remix, 2004, 11 min. (www.djrabbi.com)
Walter Benjamin, Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Production, 1936
Guy Debord, Society of Spectacle, 1967

Itinerary for Image Making
Through visiting several contemporary art works we will investigate the methodologies of image production. The sensuous space formed through the encounter with the image will be analyzed through unfolding the pre-production, production and post-production.
Ryzard Wasko, A-B-C-D-E-F=1-36, 1974, 16 mm, 8 min.
:mentalKLINIK, visioncloud, 2007, 5 min.
Ann Lee by Dominique Gonzales Foerster, Pierre Hugyge, Philippe Pareno – clipping from youtube: http://video.google.com/videosearch?q=no%20ghost%20just%20a%20shell&oe=utf-8&rls=org.mozilla:de:official&client=firefox-a&um=1&ie=UTF-8&sa=N&hl=de&tab=wv#
Jean Pierre Rehm, on Dominique Gonzales Foerster, catalogue, Portikus publications

27.10.2009 //delivered by letter
Spatialisation of Image
This meeting will be on the potentiality of image as a domain of distributing the sensible. The spatialisation of image refers to the sphere of the sensual internalising the individual, thus incorporating with the filmic.
Clipping from Jean Luc Godard – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1JHgNBxpemA&hl=de
Selection of films by Jesper Just:
-A question of silence, 2008, 7 min
-Something to love, 2005, 8 min
-Romantic delusions, 2008, 10 min
-A vicious undertow, 2007, 8 min
-A voyage in dwelling, 2008, 11 min
-A fine romance triology, 16 min

10.11.2009 //delivered via skype
Constructing the Imaginary
We will investigate the potentiality of image on its production of the imaginary. That is to say, how societies realise themselves on the course of an example and how these examples are associated with the images that are produced to resemble belonging, identity, social conditioning.
Katie Davies, Commonwealth, 2007
Dani Gal, The Talking Mountain of Israel, 2007
Esra Ersen, Parachutist on the third floor, Birds in the Laundry, 2005, 45 min.
Yuval Benziman,The Fly-effect
Maurice Merleau Ponty, Art and the World of Perception

Narrating the Image
We will dive into semiology and the fourth condition of the tricotomy of signifier-signified-signifying chain. Through decoding the image, we will investigate the narratives that emerge.
Laura Horelli, You Go Where You are Sent, 2004,
Ursula Biemann, X-Mission, 2009
Richard Bartle Pow Wow, 2008
Ursula Biemann, on X-Mission

Repetition as a Strategy
Hal Foster proposes repetition as an enactment of questioning the real. In this meeting we will discuss the method of repetition in its relation to meaning production.
Selection of work by Florian Wust:
-Bayram Sevgidir, 2007, 26”
-Sex Milliarden Gewinn, 2007, 32”
Selection of films by Bjorn Melhus:
-Das Zauberglas, 1991, 6 min
-Again & Again, 2001, 8 min.
-Deadly Storms, 2008, 7 min.
Hal Foster, The Return of the Real

Remaking Images: Collage
We will look into the notion of collage on the domain of the filmic and the moving image and we will discuss what collage brings in as a means of producing a new image on the corpses of the already existing ones.
Thomas Hirschhorn, Ur-Collages
Clipping from one Minute by Jon Mikel Euba
Chantal Mouffe, Artistic Activism and Agonistic Spaces, Art&Research, v1 no2, 2007

Foreseeing the Horizon
We will be discussing, where the current status of image production will lead to and how, as producers, we can relate to the contemporary means, and our production to the ongoing streams of consumption. The conclusion of the seminars will seek a mutual argument.
Clipping from Time Machine:
Brian Holmes, Decipher the future Experimental work in mobile territories

Special Thanks to Maxa Zoller, Simon Hutta, Karen Mirza, Brad Butler, Sandro Droschl, Marc Ries, for their generous support; Galleri Christina Wilson, Copenhagen, Galerie Anita Beckers, Frankfurt am Main for their professional cooperation; to all the artists who have consented to screen their work.