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North Atlantic Oscillation

North Atlantic Oscillation

THE DARK ARTS OF FINANCE

The Dark Arts of Finance: Speculation, Collaboration and Artistic Labour

Max Haiven

Wednesday March 19th @ 3-5PM, University of Essex, Room 5B.202

Unlike his contemporaries, and unlike so many of today’s commentators, Marx was unsatisfied with approaches to the financial sector that saw it as merely parasitic (or as any more parasitic than other forms of capitalist accumulation). Rather, he suggested that finance represented one important means by which a key crisis endemic to capitalism might be (temporarily) averted: it provided a forum within which otherwise competitive capitalist actors might pool their wealth in the interests of their class and of the system as a whole. Such an approach to finance, and to the important but often overlooked forms of inadvertent cooperation at the heart of capitalist accumulation, may help us explore the politics and potentialities of artists’ collectives amidst today’s “financialization” of art. What might be gained if we imagined the infiltration of “art” by financial methods, measures and metaphors not as a parasitic imposition, but as new grounds for collaboration? Can we not imagine increasingly individuated and competitive artists as unwittingly enrolled in some form of (re)productive collectivity by the speculative currents of the art market? And, if so, how might this open up new ways to imagine radical collectivities that do not merely seek to return art to its allegedly pre-financialized pedestal, but that seize upon this new situation dialectically?

Max Haiven is an assistant professor in the Division of Art History and Critical Studies at the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design in Canada. His book Cultures of Financialization: Fictitious Capital in Popular Culture and Everyday Life is forthcoming from Palgrave MacMillan in 2014. His book Crises of the Imagination, Crises of Power: Capitalism, Creativity and the Commons will be published by Zed Books in March 2014. More information can be found at http://maxhaiven.com.

Sponsored by the Centre for Work, Organization, and Society.
This seminar is part of an ongoing workshop series on artist collectives.
For more information contact Stevphen Shukaitis: sshuka@essex.ac.uk

 

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Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

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