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The Politics of Ambiguity

Klee, Steve A. (2009) The Politics of Ambiguity. In: Spin[Freee]oza (Shop Windows and Balloons). SMART Project Space, Amsterdam, pp. 17-24. ISBN 978-90-806655-9-0. (KAR id:31590)


The essay focuses on French philosopher Jacques Rancière and argues for the transformation of his theory of aesthetics so as to accommodate swathes of directly political artwork, thus countering his tendency to disqualify and denigrate this genre of work. I show that Rancière’s edict against artwork that communicates in clear political messages can be overturned if those messages are proven to signify a genuine egalitarianism. The twist being that Rancière has done more than anyone else to theorise this politics of equality. Therefore I use one part of his philosophy against another in order to recalibrate rather than destroy his aesthetic system. My example of artwork that is directly political is drawn from the oeuvre of American performance practitioner Suzanne Lacy

Item Type: Book section
Additional information: Spin(Freee)oza (Shop Windows and Balloons) is a project by Freee. - Book published in conjunction with the exhibition 'On Joy, Sadness and Desire', 9 May-28 June 2009.
Uncontrolled keywords: Suzanne Lacy; Jacques Rancière; politics; art; aesthetics
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BH Aesthetics
N Visual Arts > N Visual arts (General). For photography, see TR
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Arts and Humanities > School of Arts
Depositing User: S. Klee
Date Deposited: 11 Oct 2012 19:01 UTC
Last Modified: 16 Nov 2021 10:09 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)

University of Kent Author Information

Klee, Steve A..

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