Zur Lage der Rezension: Symposium

Zur Lage der Rezension

Gemeinsames Symposium von AICA und Texte zur Kunst

6. Oktober 2023, 16:00 bis 20:30 Uhr
Berlin, Roter Salon, Volksbühne am Rosa Luxemburg-Platz

The understandings and social functions of art, literature, and scholarship are changing – and so is the review, which as a medium of art criticism connects all three fields. Methods established over decades – such as phenomenology, hermeneutics, semiotics, or systems theory – are giving way to diversified approaches; the foundations of traditional schools of thought are eroding, and new spaces for reflection are emerging. Marking the realignment of the Board of Directors of the German section of the International Association of Art Critics (AICA) and tying in with the current issue of TEXTE ZUR KUNST, which is dedicated to the “review,” the jointly conceived evening aims to reflect on the historical and future potentials of the genre in two panel discussions.

As a basis for an examination of the current state of debate, the first panel casts a look back at the history of art criticism and its relationship with art history. Over the past decades, a distancing from canonical expertise and a turn toward perspectives and practices beyond the institutional mainstream have become apparent in reviews. To what extent does this development have an impact on academia? And how can academic discourses, sometimes from disciplines other than art history, be made fruitful for the review and its readership? What consequences does the tension between criticism and scholarship have for the criteria and linguistic means of criticism, and contemporary reviewing as a whole?

The second panel focuses on the possibilities of more recent forms of thinking and publishing. Under what conditions can the merging of theory and practice drive progressive shifts in discourse? Which forums are particularly suited for this purpose? And what challenges do diversified spaces of communication entail? Given the multiplying media, modes, and strategies of discussing publicly accessible cultural objects, the understanding of critique is shifting, as is the relationship of critics to their audiences. Last but not least, attention is given to the material conditions that make it possible to formulate well-founded criticism in the first place, which are increasingly deteriorating.

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