[-empyre-] incompatible research practices - - performing revolutions /

Johannes Birringer Johannes.Birringer at brunel.ac.uk
Fri Feb 17 03:55:52 EST 2012

dear all

sorry i am behind (just a few days) and i am sure it can be forgiven,
as i feel the topic of incompatilities/research and revolutions is of course
not exhaustible. 

a couple of observations might be carried over from last week.

..Ignorance as to how these engineered infrastructures actually function, 
what they do and what is done with them behind their own presentation, is actively being abused both inside and out of democracies.

This comment in "engineered infrastructures" kept ringing in my ears when i read the comments on art and research, and Menotti's responses
to what I said on "writing up" or writing down  (Phd theses...)  . I then also felt Salvatore's point about the perhaps less than self-intoxicating
mechanisms and maneuvers of writing "heavyweight funding proposals" was well taken: "enormous opportunities, enormous complexities, 
very specific languages and methodologies."

But I am not whether i want to follow Menotti's argument about Phd degrees being needed, or having any capacity, to "accredit" or legitimate artistic work...

At least in Brazil, engineering (just like architecture, medicine and law) is an activity that cannot be properly (legally, publicly) exercised if one is not accredited as a professional. This accreditation involves not only going through years of training and passing tests, but also affiliating oneself to a certain national union or council that regulates the activity.

I wonder what role this issue plays in the life of artists going through PhDs. I have the impression that sometimes practitioners are backed up by years of rigorous exploration of one subject, but remain nevertheless restricted in the application of this research because they are not properly accredited. How much of a practice-based PhD consists in an effort to translate (formalize or write down) literacy already acquired, in order to make it legitimate? What other problems might arise from this (rather dry) approach?

actually I find the thought repulsive that art making or the reality or effect of an art work has much to do with the self-intoxicating academic prosthetics of degrees as legitimation of "knowledge" and original contributions to the field.
and it surprises me how often the question was asked last week, namely whether - and how - academic/theoretical justifications of art practice function as authorization mechanics.  Authorization of what?

apologies for my copy/paste (Feb 10) of a typo in my post on Ulrike Meinhof  (I misspelled her name).
Menotti's response, i worry, now make the earlier comment (which I found intriguingly obscure) even more puzzling

Uh, sorry about that. The Baader-Meinhof phenomenon is when you start stumbling again and again, apparently by chance, upon something that you just discovered.

The urban dictionary specifies “obcure information:”

Is it a fate? A conspiracy? Or just a sort of involuntary cognitive bias?
In any case, I was wondering if the sudden hype felt around some theories could not be just a *personal* (or collective, but not universal) impression...


Are you saying something about stumbling upon revolutionary performances or self-intoxicating urban guerrilla warfare? or the Baader-Meinhof armed resistance being a hype or hyping itself up, and (now that quite of few of the first generation of the group are dead), the movies & entertainment complex (and academia) take on the rest? 

with regards
Johannes Birringer

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