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The object and I. On modesty (lecture and visual essay)

summer academy Paul-Klee-Center Bern, 2009

 

 

The lecture was a contribution for the summer academy’s examination of Internal Necessity, curated by Tirdad Zolghadr.

 

The object and I. On modesty is a spoken and visual essay on different modes of working and possible attitudes towards work, spanning from alienation to identification. It reflects the transfer of attitudes on objects and vice versa, asking for the location of the ethical in subject-object relationships. Where to identify a realm of non-instrumentality in these relationships?

 

The images examine different modes of dealing with the world of objects: they integrated sequences from films by Yvonne Rainer and Marguerite Duras showing the domestic arrangements of objects, as well as a photographic study of the museum display of Brasilian feather objects once collected by Claude-Lévi Strauss. These arrangements of feathers and other materials show a specific lightness in the way the materials were treated in order to create form, differing from other objects of their kind. 

 

 

The text is inspired by reflections by Simone Weil, Félix Guattari and Antonio Negri.