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Conference Participation
The Art of Ethics in the Contemporary Art Institution

Institute of Contemporary Art

Sat. Nov. 28, 10:00am – Sun. Nov. 29, 2015 4:00pm

↗Overgaden LECTURES

Betwixt and Between
ABCs by Counter Space

This coming weekend Counter Space curators Linda Jensen and Angelo Romano are participating in Overgaden LECTURES, an international conference series at Overgaden in Copenhagen.
This year’s conference focuses on some of the central ethical challenges and dilemmas facing the art institution today under the title The Art of Ethics in the Contemporary Art Institution.

There is, not only in Switzerland, a proliferation of “off spaces,” “alternative spaces” and “independent spaces.” Based on the creative industries turn with its explicit business dogma, many forms of “creativity” in the arts seem to be fostered. Still, the ensuing build-up towards hypercapitalism puts a pressure on. We realize we don't function better because of ‘the system,’ but because we often depend upon on precarious work and affective relations. It is artists, co-workers, helpers, friends—who show solidarity with our idealism. Their time and engagement unwillingly becomes ‘human capital.’ On the other hand, investors in the arts seek return of interest and profit; public foundations slowly move in the same direction through the professionalization of grant procedures and their quest for private funding. The notion of art as a public good, as a common contribution to the public sphere, sees itself caught in the straightjacket of a quasi-professionalized, individualistic, privatized ideology. What seems necessary now, are critical reminders and different forms of solidarization. Historically, independent spaces have been breeding grounds for experimentalism, often remaining at a distance from mainstream circuits. Today, is it even decidedly possible, viable and wise for these “ungovernables" to exist at a “distance”? In other words can an independent art space remain free from the enterprise culture, and still have bearing and relevancy on the art world map? In our presentation, we don't present solutions but a cartography in the form of an ABC of our mind-scape to offer grounds for debate.