Essays

The Against Nature Journal #3
Aimar Arriola, Grégory Castéra (eds.)
Council - 15.00€ -

This third issue reviews the many ways in which medicine has pathologized non-procreative sexual desire— those bodies that challenge gender binaries or expose different abilities—while imagining other ways of collectively well-being.

"The issue opens with a commissioned work by visual artists CANDICE LIN and P. STAFF that evokes the central concerns of the journal in subtle and unexpected ways. Lambda Literary Award–winner INDRAPRAMIT DAS speculates on other forms of kinship in a new science-fiction story, while a transnational questionnaire offers insights into the continuous fight for reproductive justice.

We republish a chapter from the autobiography of the late South African, trans, traditional healer NKUNZI ZANDILE NKABINDE, which is introduced by RUTH MORGAN.

We continue to honor the power of poetry with works by ROSA CHÁVEZ and STELLA NYANZI, while celebrating the energy of collective action with a piece by WHAT WOULD AN HIV DOULA DO? In anticipation to his new book on queer desire in the Caribbean, scholar ANDIL GOSINE shares a previous article addressing the notion of “against nature,” while our Columns section brings news from Brazil, India, Kenya, Lebanon, Malaysia, Morocco, and the UK during a season of pandemic fatigue, but also care work, organization, and hope." — the editors

Knowledge Beside Itself – Contemporary Art's Epistemic Politics
Tom Holert
Sternberg Press - 19.00€ -

A study on the role of research and knowledge production in today's contemporary art, and the growing relevance of art as conduit of knowledge.

What is the role and function of contemporary art in economic and politicalsystems that increasingly manage data and affect? Knowledge Beside Itself delves into the peculiar emphasis placed in recent years, curatorially and institutionally, on notions such as “research” and “knowledge production.” Considered as a specific, expansive mode of the culture industry, contemporary art is viewed here as a strategic bet on the social distinctions and value extractions made possible by claiming a different, novel access to “knowledge.” Contemporary art's various liaisons with the humanities and the social and natural sciences, as well as its practitioners' frequent embeddedness within transdisciplinary research environments and educational settings, have created a sense of epistemo-aesthetic departure, which concurs with the growing relevance of art as conduit or catalyst of knowledge.

Discussing the practice of artists such as Christine Borland, Tony Chakar, Natascha Sadr Haghighian, Adelita Husni-Bey, Jakob Jakobsen, Claire Pentecost, and Pilvi Takala, writer and curator Tom Holert submits the gambit of conceptualizing contemporary art as an agent of epistemic politics to a genealogical analysis of its political-economic underpinnings in these times of cognitive capitalism, machine learning, and a renewed urgency of epistemological disobedience.

Tom Holert is a writer and curator. In 2015 he cofounded the Harun Farocki Institut in Berlin, a platform for research and production departing from the example set by Farocki. With Anselm Franke he curated the 2018 exhibition “Neolithic Childhood: Art in a False Present, c. 1930” at Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin.

For Now (paperback)
Eileen Myles
Yale University Press - 10.00€ -

In this third Why I Write volume, Eileen Myles addresses the social, political, and aesthetic conditions that shape their work.

In this raucous meditation, Eileen Myles offers an intimate glimpse into creativity's immediacy. With erudition and wit, Myles recounts their early years as an awakening writer; existential struggles with landlords; storied moments with neighbors, friends, and lovers; and the textures and identities of cities and the country that reveal the nature of writing as presence in time.  

For Myles, time's "optic quality" is what enables writing in the first place, as attention, as devotion, as excess. It is this chronologized vision that enables the writer to love the world as it presently is, lending love a linguistic permanence amid social and political systems that threaten to eradicate it. Irreverent, generous, and always insightful, For Now is a candid record of the creative process from one of our most beloved artists.

Paperback edition - 2021.

A Talk on Rhyme
David Brazil
The Yellow Papers - 8.00€ -

In A Talk on Rhyme, a text distilled from a lecture given in 2014, poet David Brazil reflects on rhyme’s “emergence, progress, inoperativity, and prospect.” The Talk is supplemented by an essayistic bibliography on subjects ranging from classical prosody to American folk music, via writings on and by poets long dead whose names are obvious: Saint Paul, Dickinson, Herbert, Spicer, Hölderlin, Dante, O’Hara.

What We Could Have Become
Sascia Bailer (ed.)
Onomatopee - 11.00€ -

The publication 'What we could have become: Reflections on queer feminist filmmaking' explores the radical potentials of care and speculative fiction in the context of queer feminist collective filmmaking. Departing from the experimental short film The Book of S of I (2020) by Malu Blume, this publication is a documentation of the film project just as much as its own artistic medium. Using a performative mode, it weaves together film stills with unreleased set photography, creating a visual narration that reflects caring and kinship through a queer feminist – and femme – lens.

With a foreword by editor Sascia Bailer, the booklet contains a transcript of the film’s narrative voice over and an essay on queer utopian care in the context of The Book of S of I and its making, both written by the artist Malu Blume. The publication concludes with a conversation between Malu Blume and their co-producers, friends and artistic collaborators Ipek Hamzaoglu, Laura Nitsch and Sophie Utikal, moderated by Sascia Bailer. In this conversation the artists and discuss the chances and challenges of collective film making in the context of producing The Book of S of I.

Malu Blume is a Berlin-based artist who works at the intersections of art, performance, film and education. In 2016 they completed a master's degree in Critical Studies at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna. Malu Blume has been the co-founder and member of several collective projects on queer feminism, archival politics, friendship and collaborative knowledge production.

Empathy Revisited: Designs for more than one
Mariana Pestana (ed.)
Onomatopee - 24.00€ -

Ideas, utopian propositions and practical solutions for reinterpreting and reconnecting empathically with the world around us.

 

This book brings together ideas and projects that seek to define a new role for design based on empathy.

As a mediator of emotions and feelings, design is presented here as a practice that takes care as its main purpose. Designers adopt sensitive, diplomatic, sometimes therapeutic functions, with the aim of connecting us with one another but also with the world around us, with other species, with soil, water and even the universe. In this book, the reader will find new ideas, utopian propositions but also practical solutions for reinterpreting and reconnecting with the world around them. Taking food as a key medium of encounter, both between people and also with the more than human world, the designers featured in this book consciously operate in a multi-scalar realm – from the invisible microbial life that lives in our gut to the vast landscapes transformed by agricultural practices. Designs for more than one are those that take into consideration not just their immediate user or client but the many constituents inevitably impacted by any new object or action.

Edited by Mariana Pestana with Sumitra Upham and Billie Muraben.

With written contributions by Ekin Ozbicer, Mariana Pestana, Susan Lanzoni, Naz Şahin, Billie Muraben, Sumitra Upham, FRAUD, Luigi Coppola and Vivien Sansour and Pelin Tan, Aslıhan Demirtaş, Black Athena Collective, theOtherDada, TiriLab, Counterspace, Anna Puigjaner (MAIO) with Alina Abouelenin, Aslı Uludağ, Dele Adeyemo, Young Curators Group, Eylül Şenses, Ulya Soley, Nur Horsanalı, Studio Ossidiana, Orkan Telhan + elii, Ibiye Camp, Ben Thorp Brown, Paula Gaetano Adi, Meriem Bennani, Calum Bowden, Jawa El Khash, Emmy Bacharach, Alice dos Reis, Macedo Cannat, Future Anecdotes.
 

Speculative Facts
Department of Speculative Facts
Onomatopee - 20.00€ -

The Department of Speculative Facts connects two seemingly contradictory approaches: Speculation which attempts to think and act beyond existing knowledge and structures, and fact-checkers in search for a solid consensus on which our reality can be built. When stretching knowledge and speculating with fiction, what sense of responsibility is needed in times of democratized opinions and fake news? Learning from the other SF—Science Fiction—we think of speculation through facts, and facts through speculation, to situate truth culturally.

The backbone of this book is an e-mail exchange between two fact-checkers from the New York Times Magazine, which we handed over to artists to re-write, re-perform, and re-design. The publication includes the original letters, workshop scripts, as well as additional texts by philosophers, journalists, writers, and artists looking at new social contracts, with which we can anchor ourselves in the present.

Department of Speculative Facts is Lietje Bauwens, Quenton Miller, Karoline Świeżyński.

Contributions by Sepake Angiama, Lietje Bauwens (DoSF), Kate Briggs, Federico Campagna, Alex Carp & Jamie Fisher (NEW YORK TIMES MAGAZINE), Mette Edvardsen, Tristan Garcia, Maryam Monalisa Gharavi, Nicoline van Harskamp, Quenton Miller DoSF, Ingo Niermann, Michael Portnoy, Achal Prabhala with WIKIAFRICA, FACT FACTORIES, AFRICA CHECK, CHIMURENGA, Wolfgang Tillmans, Bob Trafford (FORENSIC ARCHITECTURE).

Design by Karoline Świeżyński

On Freedom: Four Songs of Care and Constraint
Maggie Nelson
Graywolf Press - 27.00€ -

So often deployed as a jingoistic, even menacing rallying cry, or limited by a focus on passing moments of liberation, the rhetoric of freedom both rouses and repels. Does it remain key to our autonomy, justice, and well-being, or is freedom's long star turn coming to a close? Does a continued obsession with the term enliven and emancipate, or reflect a deepening nihilism (or both)? On Freedom examines such questions by tracing the concept's complexities in four distinct realms: art, sex, drugs, and climate.  

Drawing on a vast range of material, from critical theory to pop culture to the intimacies and plain exchanges of daily life, Maggie Nelson explores how we might think, experience, or talk about freedom in ways responsive to the conditions of our day. Her abiding interest lies in ongoing "practices of freedom" by which we negotiate our interrelation with, indeed, our inseparability from others, with all the care and constraint that entails, while accepting difference and conflict as integral to our communion.  

For Nelson, thinking publicly through the knots in our culture, from recent art-world debates to the turbulent legacies of sexual liberation, from the painful paradoxes of addiction to the lure of despair in the face of the climate crisis, is itself a practice of freedom, a means of forging fortitude, courage, and company. On Freedom is an invigorating, essential book for challenging times.

Permanent Revolution: Essays
Gail Scott
Book*hug Press - 20.00€ -

From iconic feminist writer Gail Scott comes Permanent Revolution, a collection of new essays gathered alongside a recreation of her groundbreaking text, Spaces Like Stairs. In conversation with other writers working in queer/feminist avant-garde trajectories, including l'écriture-au-féminin in Québec and continental New Narrative, these essays provide an evolutionary snapshot of Scott's ongoing prose experiment that hinges the matter of writing to ongoing social upheaval. Scott herself points to the heart of this book, writing, "Where there is no emergency, there is likely no real experiment."

With a Foreword by Zoe Whittall and an Afterword by Margaret Christakos.

Gail Scott is the author of Spare Parts (1981), Heroine (1987, re-issued in 2019 with an introduction by Eileen Myles), Main Brides (1993), My Paris (1999), Spare Parts Plus Two (2002), and The Obituary (2010). Her essays are collected in Spaces Like Stairs (1989) and in La Théorie, un dimanche (1988) which was translated into English as Theory, A Sunday (2013). Scott is co-editor of the New Narrative anthology: Biting the Error: Writers Explore Narrative (2004). Her translation of Michael Delisle's Le désarroi du matelot was shortlisted for a 2001 Governor General's Literary Award. A memoir, based in Lower Manhattan during the early Obama years, is forthcoming. Scott lives in Montréal.

Fórum do Futuro – Vita Nova
Shumon Basar, Guilherme Blanc, Filipa Ramos, Jenna Sutela (eds.)
Bom Dia Books - 20.00€ -

A collective book that proposes to question human and non-human existence in the current social context, spanning different cosmogonic views.

The Vita Nova editorial project had its genesis in the Fórum do Futuro: a programme of debates, artist talks, and performances, held annually in the city of Porto, that brings together guests from different artistic and scientific practices to reflect on fundamental issues for contemporary societies. Given the impossibility of holding the 2020 edition, due to the challenges posed by the pandemic, the Fórum do Futuro is instead presenting a book that proposes to question human and non-human existence in the current social context, spanning different cosmogonic views. The book consists of four thematic sections that combine different artistic, scientific, philosophical and technological perspectives in written and visual essays, stories and interviews.

Texts by Sophia Al-Maria, K Allado-McDowell, Shumon Basar, Guilherme Blanc, Rosi Braidotti, Octavia Butler, Ted Chiang, GPT-3, Alexis Pauline Gumbs, Kirsten Keller, Filipa Ramos, Tabita Rezaire, Jenna Sutela, Denise Ferreira da Silva, Suzanne Treister, Aby Warburg, Chandra Wickramasinghe, Feifei Zhou.

Published August 2021

Can the Monster Speak?: Report to an Academy of Psychoanalysts
Paul B. Preciado
Semiotext(e) - 16.00€ -

Paul Preciado's controversial 2019 lecture at the École de la Cause Freudienne annual conference, published in a definitive translation for the first time. 

In November 2019, Paul Preciado was invited to speak in front of 3,500 psychoanalysts at the École de la Cause Freudienne's annual conference in Paris. Standing in front of the profession for whom he is a mentally ill person suffering from gender dysphoria, Preciado draws inspiration in his lecture from Kafka's Report to an Academy, in which a monkey tells an assembly of scientists that human subjectivity is a cage comparable to one made of metal bars.  

Speaking from his own mutant cage, Preciado does not so much criticize the homophobia and transphobia of the founders of psychoanalysis as demonstrate the discipline's complicity with the ideology of sexual difference dating back to the colonial era, an ideology which is today rendered obsolete by technological advances allowing us to alter our bodies and procreate differently. Preciado calls for a radical transformation of psychological and psychoanalytic discourse and practices, arguing for a new epistemology capable of allowing for a multiplicity of living bodies without reducing the body to its sole heterosexual reproductive capability, and without legitimizing hetero-patriarchal and colonial violence.  

Causing a veritable outcry among the assembly, Preciado was heckled and booed and unable to finish. The lecture, filmed on smartphones, was published online, where fragments were transcribed, translated, and published with no regard for exactitude. With this volume, Can the Monster Speak? is published in a definitive translation for the first time.

Berverly Buchanan: Marsh Ruins
Amelia Groom
Afterall Books - 20.00€ -

An illustrated examination of Beverly Buchanan's 1981 environmental sculpture, which exists in an ongoing state of ruination. 

Beverly Buchanan's Marsh Ruins (1981) are large, solid mounds of cement and shell-based tabby concrete, yet their presence has always been elusive. Hiding in the tall grasses and brackish waters of the Marshes of Glynn, on the southeast coast of Georgia, the Marsh Ruins merge with their surroundings as they enact a curious and delicate tension between destruction and endurance. This volume offers an illustrated examination of Buchanan's environmental sculpture, which exists in an ongoing state of ruination.

Assuming the Ecosexual Position
Annie Sprinkle & Beth Stephens with Jennie Klein
University of Minnesota Press - 30.00€ -

The story of the artistic collaboration between the originators of the ecosex movement, their diverse communities, and the Earth.

What's sexy about saving the planet? Funny you should ask. Because that is precisely, or, perhaps, broadly, what Annie Sprinkle and Beth Stephens have spent many years bringing to light in their live art, exhibitions, and films. In 2008, Sprinkle and Stephens married the Earth, which set them on the path to explore the realms of ecosexuality as they became lovers with the Earth and made their mutual pleasure an embodied expression of passion for the environment. Ever since, they have been not just pushing but obliterating the boundaries circumscribing biology and ecology, creating ecosexual art in their performance of an environmentalism that is feminist, queer, sensual, sexual, posthuman, materialist, exuberant, and steeped in humor.

Assuming the Ecosexual Position tells of childhood moments that pointed to a future of ecosexuality, for Annie, in her family swimming pool in Los Angeles; for Beth, savoring forbidden tomatoes from the vine on her grandparents' Appalachian farm. The book describes how the two came together as lovers and collaborators, how they took a stand against homophobia and xenophobia, and how this union led to the miraculous conception of the Love Art Laboratory, which involved influential performance artists Linda M. Montano, Guillermo Gómez-Peña, and feminist pornographer Madison Young. Stephens and Sprinkle share the process of making interactive performance art, including the Chemo Fashion Show, Cuddle, Sidewalk Sex Clinics, and Ecosex Walking Tours. Over the years, they celebrated many more weddings to various nature entities, from the Appalachian Mountains to the Adriatic Sea. To create these weddings, they collaborated with hundreds of people and invited thousands of guests as they vowed to love, honor, and cherish the many elements of the Earth.

As entertaining as it is deeply serious, and arriving at a perilous time of sharp differences and constricting categories, the story of this artistic collaboration between Sprinkle, Stephens, their diverse communities, and the Earth opens gender and sexuality, art and environmentalism, to the infinite possibilities and promise of love.

Appendix Project: Talks and Essays
Kate Zambreno
Semiotext(e) - 16.50€ -

Inspired by the lectures of Roland Barthes, Anne Carson, and Jorge Luis Borges, Kate Zambreno's Appendix Project collects eleven talks and essays written in the course of the year following the publication of Book of Mutter, Zambreno's book on her mother that took her over a decade to write. These surprising and moving performances, underscored by the sleeplessness of the first year of her child's life, contain Zambreno's most original and dazzling thinking and writing to date.

In Appendix Project Zambreno thinks through the work of On Kawara, Roland Barthes, W.G. Sebald, Bhanu Kapil, Walter Benjamin, Theresa Hak Kyung Cha, Marguerite Duras, Marlene Dumas, Louise Bourgeois, Doris Salcedo, Jenny Holzer, and more.

A Nazi Word for a Nazi Thing
So Mayer
Peninsula Press - 9.00€ -  out of stock

An essay on art, bodies and fascism.

In an era where identity politics is being weaponised against the very people it has sought to make visible, how can we reclaim complexity?

In 1937 the Nazis staged an exhibition of seized modernist artworks. Named Entartete ‘Kunst’ – Degenerate ‘Art’ – it sought to define degeneracy, display it and destroy it.This act of violent appropriation is one episode in a long and ongoing history of the erasure of queer and non-normative cultures.

A Nazi Word for a Nazi Thing works against this erasure; it is a manifesto – a catalogue for an exhibition that could never take place. Drawing on work from dissident sexologist Magnus Hirschfeld to South African artist Zanele Muholi, as well as a century of queer cinema from Sergei Eisenstein to Pedro Almodóvar, So Mayer creates an archive of resistance.

‘This book is a small revolution that becomes a party that you won’t be leaving soon. I believe we’re living in a time of fresh erasures, systemic violences working that global pandemic to take some other bodies out. Looking so freshly at the history of queerness, sexual deviance and the long long coordinated erasures of colonialism, bigotry and transphobia the essential non binary nature of art opens up right here like the wildly singing flower it is and So Mayer’s compelling version makes sense, makes me listen.’
-- Eileen Myles

‘A Nazi Word for a Nazi Thing is a reflective, creative walk through some of the worst – and best – people of the last hundred years, looking at the power of images and their relationship(s) with text. In a time of rising fascism, So Mayer highlights ways that artists have found strategies of resistance, and offers hope in historical analysis.’
-- Juliet Jacques

We are not where we need to be, but we ain't where we were.
Tiphanie Blanc, Lili Reynaud-Dewar & Ramaya Tegegne (Ed.)
L’Amazone & Privilege - 8.00€ -

We are not where we need to be but, we ain't where we were is the first volume of a new series of publications by the collective Wages For Wages Against that reports on active research engaged within the artistic professions and institutions since 2017. Its aim is to question the underlying neoliberal logics in the contemporary art world, by orienting our object of study towards the struggles that impact it. With this publication, our hope is to put into practice various values specific to the campaign: the existence of a systematic and fair remuneration, a desire for transparency, the sharing of knowledge, and the visibilization of demands proper to the field of the visual arts and concomitant struggles. It is the result of militant experiences, at the convergence of our individual experiences and collective questionings.

With texts by Tiphanie Blanc, Antonella Corsani, Fanny Lallart, Lili Reynaud-Dewar, Ramaya Tegegne and an interview with Outrage Collectif.

Eng & Fr

Published 2021. 

 

Radical Attention
Julia Bell
Peninsula Press - 9.00€ -

An essay on the battle for our attention in the age of distraction. 

Attention pays. In today‘s online economy it has become a commodity to be bought and sold. Bombarding us with free smartphone apps and news websites, developers and advertisers have turned what and how focus our attention into the world‘s fastest growing industry. 

In exchange for our attention, information and entertainment is ever at our fingertips. But at what cost? In this essay, at once personal and polemical, meditative and militant, Julia Bell asks what has been lost in this trade off. How can we reclaim our attention? In a world of infinite distraction, how can attention become radical?

Praise for Radical Attention

‘Terrifying, clarifying and ultimately hopeful, this is an essential book. Julia Bell grapples with the grim realities of our online lives, setting out possibilities for resisting and reclaiming our imperilled freedoms.’ — Olivia Laing

I See That I See What You Don't See
Otero Verzier M. & Van Westrenen F. (Ed.)
Het Nieuwe Instituut - 22.50€ -

This “black book” published by Het Nieuwe Instituut presents a layered, non-binary notion of darkness. Navigating through cosmic, automated, and seemingly invisible environments, it delves into what we do not generally get – or choose – to see. Moreover, the book explores the relation between the possibility of seeing and forms of oppression and emancipation. Sharp book design frames contributions by the Academy for Urban Astronauts, Ramon Amaro, Danilo Correale, Jonathan Crary, Aldo van Eyck, Ludo Groen, Bregtje van der Haak, Saidiya Hartman, Marten Kuijpers, Momtaza Mehri, Melvin Moti, Lucy McRae, Johannes Schwartz, Dirk Sijmons, and Leanne Wijnsma.

Dutch/English.

Published 2020.

Funeral Diva
Pamela Sneed
City Lights Books - 17.00€ -

In this collection of personal essays and poetry, acclaimed poet and performer Pamela Sneed details her coming of age in New York City during the late 1980s. Funeral Diva captures the impact of AIDS on black queer life, and highlights the enduring bonds between the living, the dying, and the dead. Sneed's poems not only converse with lovers past and present, but also with her literary forebears - like James Baldwin, Toni Morrison, Audre Lorde - whose aesthetic and thematic investments she renews for a contemporary American landscape. Offering critical focus on matters from police brutality to LGBTQ+ rights, Funeral Diva confronts the most pressing issues of our time with acerbic wit and audacity.

Poet, professor, and performer, Pamela Sneed is the author of Sweet Dreams, Kong, and Imagine Being More Afraid of Freedom than Slavery. She was a Visiting Critic at Yale, and at Columbia University's School of the Arts, and is online faculty at Chicago's School of the Art Institute teaching Human Rights and Writing Art. She also teaches new genres at Columbia's School of the Arts in the Visual Dept. Her work is widely anthologized and appears in Nikki Giovanni's, The 100 Best African American Poems.

Published October 2020

Funeral Divais the Winner of the Lambda Award for Lesbian Poetry.

Electric Brine
Jennifer Teets (ed.)
Archive Books - 18.00€ -

Electric Brine is a volume of poetry and critical essays by women voices from diverse fields such as literature, geography, media studies, history of life sciences, sociology, and poetics of science and fiction, each of them central to the independent curatorial research entity The World in Which We Occur (TWWWO, 2014-ongoing) and its associated online study group Matter in Flux.

Conceived as an anthology and a register, it serves as a testimony to the initiative's long-standing work of creative adaptation and ecological inquiry through a quest to situate a vision of material politics through the lens of six punctuated pieces on flow and fluids. The literary and scientific fabulations found in these pages speak of the conjunction of lived embodiment, the materialized quality of language, and the ability to trigger political imagination through reading, writing and witnessing. Each of these strands polyperform under TWWWO, for they can be traced, retroactively, to the themes present in the live event series, to Matter in Flux's private study sessions, to the initiative's collective writing work presented in public venues and publications. Also included in this volume is an appendix documenting the years of invitation and study, intricately linked to the ideological praxis of these overlaps.

Co-founded in 2014 by Jennifer Teets and Margarida Mendes, The World in Which We Occur (TWWWO) is an independent curatorial research-based entity that collaborates with artists, scientists, science historians, philosophers, anthropologists, activists and more as it explores themes concerned with artistic inquiry, philosophy of science, and ecology. TWWWO began as a live talk-event series over the telephone and has thus expanded to other formats involving experiments with educational actions, discursive talks, and events via diverse methodologies.

Introduction by Jennifer Teets and Margarida Mendes.
Texts and contributions by Dionne Brand, Barbara Orland, Sophie Lewis, Esther Leslie, Hannah Landecker, Lisa Robertson. 

Graphic design: Sophie Keij & Atelier Brenda.

cart (0)