Since the early 1990s, there has been a growing artistic interest in memory as the medium of history, and a revival of biographical discourses about art. But does this lead to individualistic displacements of social meaning, or can biography be used effectively by artists as a historical form? What are the conditions for such uses? And how does the increasingly global scope and references of the art world affect the processes of identification and disidentification upon which such forms depend? This talk will reflect on these issues from the standpoint of WIELS’ current exhibition of Akram Zaatari’s work.
Peter Osborne is Professor of Modern European Philosophy and Director of the Centre for Research in Modern European Philosophy (CRMEP), Kingston University London, and an editor of the journal Radical Philosophy. His books include The Politics of Time: Modernity and Avant-Garde (1995; 2011), Philosophy in Cultural Theory (2000), Conceptual Art (2002), Marx (2005) and most recently, Anywhere or Not at All: Philosophy of Contemporary Art (2013), published by Verso.