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BORIS GROYS: The Topology of Contemporary Art PART 2: MULTIPLE MODERNITIES. 5. MONICA AMOR: On the Contingency of. Contemporary Art in Time” considers some examples, and conse- quences, of .. Cf. Boris Groys, “The Topology of Contemporary Art,” in Antinomies of Art. Synopsis: To understand the qualitative properties of “Contemporary Art”, the Author examines the interplay between Modern & Post-modern.

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Postmodernist art gives up the claim to truth that Modernism has raised. The contemporary technology thinks in generations. The installation formulate these conditions by creating a finite, closed space contempoorary becomes the space of open conflict and unavoidable decision between original and reproduction, between presence and representation, between unconcealed and concealed.

That shows very clearly that a film is radically, essentially changed by being put under the conditions of an installation visit — being a same copy the film becomes a different original. Leave a Reply Cancel reply Enter your comment here And the original has an aura because it has a fixed context, a well defined place in space, and through that particular place it is inscribed also in history as a singular, original object. To compare one installation to another installation we have to create a new installation that would be a place of such a comparison.

The installation is not only political because it gives a possibility to document political positions, projects, actions and events — even if such a documentation meanwhile also became a wider-spread artistic practice. That is why the installation is frequently denied the status of a specific art form, because the question arises what the medium of an installation is. Is it enough that the public simply goes by the assumption that an original exists somewhere, hidden away and protected, unless its aforementioned destruction does take place and is purposely made known?


The mere fact that a modernist artwork is still recognizable as an artwork means namely that this artwork reproduces the general conditions of recognizability of an artwork as artwork — even if a form of this artwork seems topoology be quite original. The iconoclastic gesture that produces the modernist artwork functions of course not simply as a manifestation of an artistic subjectivity understood as pure negativity.

The Topology of Contemporary Art: Boris Groys | alfredcrucible

Reproduction means dislocation, deterritorialisation, it transports artworks to networks of yroys indeterminable circulation.

This is why, paradoxically, the more you want to free yourself from the art tradition, the more you become subjected to the logic of the art historical narrative and to museum collecting. According to Benjamin, in our age the artwork leaves its original context and begins to circulate anonymously in the networks of mass communication, reproduction and distribution. The installation is, as it was already said, a finite space of presence where different images and objects are arranged and exhibited.

But to recognize a certain image as a truly iconoclastic one we have to be able to compare it with the traditional images, with the icons of the past. Notify me of new comments via email. That is why contemporary art is less production of individual artworks than it is manifestation of an individual decision to include or to exclude things and images that circulate anonymously in our world- to give them a new context or to deny it to them: In contrast to Modernism, the post-modern project recognizes the transformative nature of time and space, while utilizing mechanical and technological reproduction to re-contextualize objects.

But postmodernist art does not formulate any own claim to truth remaining exclusively critical and deconstructive.

bors I will also venture to argue that in craft items that are being made in the same vein the quality tends to falter so once again, yes, I believe there is relevance.

Otherwise the work of symbolic destruction would remain unaccounted for.


That is also why post-modern art is able to look very new even if — or actually because — it is directed against the notion of the new. The practice of the historical avant-garde was based on the equation that was already formulated by Bakunin, Stirner and Nietzsche: Abolishing traditions, breaking with conventions, destroying old art and eradicating out-dated values were the slogans of the day.

Our decision to recognize a certain image as an original or as a copy is dependent on the context — on the scene where this decision is taken. By continuing to use this website, you agree to their use.

The Topology of Contemporary Art: Boris Groys

In this respect contemporary art is different from Modern art that confemporary directed toward the future and it is different also from post-modern art that was a historical reflection on the Modern project. In fact, the aura, as described by Benjamin, only comes into being thanks to the modern technique of reproduction. Modern art was working on the level of an individual form. And that is why it is also truly political.

A video or film installation secularizes the conditions of film presentation. Lives in Koeln, Germany. Beyond this specific claim to truth the modernist artwork looses its edge and becomes merely decorative whatever its form can be.

Boris Groys Born in in Petersburg. They are here and now — and they are thoroughly visible, contemporarg, unconcealed. To find out more, including how to control cookies, see here: That is why I would argue that the installation is the leading art form of contemporary art.