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[Nettime-nl] Debates of the Dutch Association of Aesthetics at Witte de
geert lovink on Sun, 27 Oct 2002 19:41:03 +0100 (CET)

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[Nettime-nl] Debates of the Dutch Association of Aesthetics at Witte de With, Rotterdam


From: Erikr {AT} wdw.nl




'Art in Dispute' is a series of debates organised by Prof. Dr. Antoon Van den Braembussche on behalf of the 'Nederlands Genootschap voor Esthetica'. Each debate will also be moderated by Prof. Van den Braembussche. These debates will take place during the academic year 2002-2003.

General Objective

The general objective is to enrich the annual NGE-symposium with an ongoing theoretical discussion on the state of (the) art, which should be relevant both for the aesthetic field and for the art world. Our main intention is to bridge the gap between theory and current practice, between academics and agents from the artistic practice.

Practical Objectives

  • The intention is to organise each year six panel discussions in the months October, November, January, February, March and May, each time on the last Friday of the month. The programme of the panel discussions will be distributed in the Newsletter of the NGE, and on our website: http://www.phil.uu.nl/esthetica.
  • As a rule, the panels will consist of four members, comprising at least:
    1. a member of the NGE, mostly a philosopher of art,
    2. one well-known specialist in the theme or field to be discussed,
    3. one artist, curator and/or art critic, whose activities are relevant for the specific session.
  • Each panel member is expected to give, within 10 to 15 minutes, his or her own vision on the theme, after which the debate is opened first with other panel members and, eventually, also with the audience.
  • Location:
    Center for Contemporary Art Witte de With
    Witte de Withstraat 50
    3012 BR Rotterdam
    The Netherlands
    phone 31 (0)10 411 01 44
    fax 31 (0)10 411 79 24
    email info {AT} wdw.nl
    THE ENTRANCE FEE is: € 7.

Institutional Collaborations

Apart from the collaboration with Witte de With we are striving to realise a collaboration with the 'Centrum voor Beeldende Kunst Rotterdam' (CBK; Center for visual art in Rotterdam).
We also established fruitful contacts with the Theory department of the Jan van Eyck Academy through Sue Golding, director of that department.

Programme 2002-2003

25 October 2002
Documenta XI: an evaluation

Each Documenta offers an opportunity to evaluate the current state of the arts. However, the overall policy and choice of curator is a matter of debate. In this panel discussion, acute questions about globalisation, the postcolonial and the apparent disorientation of the current art world seem inevitable. Moreover: is Documenta XI representative of the actual state of affairs? Does the exhibition live up to the standards and expectations aroused by the theoretical and programmatic statements? In what sense is Documenta XI comparable to, or different from previous editions?


  • Kristian Romare. Swedish Art Critic. Brussels.
  • Herman Parret, Philosopher, Catholic University of Louvain. Member NGE.
  • Steve Rushton, art theorist and artist, London.
  • Antje von Graevenitz, Philosopher of art, University of Cologne.


29 November 2002
Diaspora and Art

Many artists in the current art world work and live in cultural contexts very different from the ones in which they were born and educated. The fact that many non-Western artists live and work in the Western art world has frequently been called the diaspora. What does diaspora really mean here? What are the implications of diaspora for the identity and career opportunities of non-Western artists? What policies were developed within the Western art world to tackle relevant problems? Has diaspora led to new forms of artistic consciousness or cultural in-betweens, where new problems and even new potentialities have arisen? Is the issue of the Other as an intercultural and philosophical perspective a sufficient answer to the challenge of diaspora?


  • Everlyn Nicodemus, Tanzanian visual artist and art theorist.Brussels.
  • Kitty Zijlmans, Professor of art history, University of Leyden.
  • Heinz Paetzold, Professor of Philosophy at the University of Kassel. Member of NGE.
  • Niru Ratnam, Professor of Art history, The Open University, London.


31 January 2003
Visual Culture and Censorship
Iconoclasm old and new

Are there traditions, such as the Islamic one, which have known visual censorship? Is visual censorship still relevant to-day? What are the current forms of censorship and especially of iconoclasm, both art-internal and art-external? Are there relevant similarities between traditional and recent repressions of the visual? What are the aesthetic implications of visual rejection? What is the meaning of current forms of art vandalism?


  • Feride Cocekoglu, Professor of visual communication design at Istanbul Bilgi University and playwriter.
  • Rob van Gerwen, Philosopher of art. University of Utrecht. Member of the NGE.
  • Felix Gmelin. Swedish artist who worked on the theme of 'art vandals'.
  • Henk Oosterling, Philosopher, Erasmus University Rotterdam.


28 February 2003
Art and New Media.
Exploring the Interface.

We are facing a rapid cross fertilisation of art and new media. New forms of digital art are constantly emerging, but the aesthetic exploration of these new forms is still largely to be established. Which theoretical frameworks are most apt to reflect upon the aesthetic implications of digital art?


  • Yves Bernard, iMal group of Brussels, specialized in Interactive Art Projects.
  • Sue Golding, Head Theory department Jan van Eyck Academy.
  • Jan Baetens, Catholic University of Louvain, University of Maastricht, Theorist of the interface. Member NGE.
  • Renée van de Vall, Philosopher of art, Unversity of Maastricht. Member NGE.


28 March 2003
The Ethical Turn

In recent years, the so-called postmodern 'anything goes' has been challenged both within the art world and within philosophy of art. In this 'ethical turn' issues about the ethical involvement of art have been rethought in terms of Levinas' philosophy of the Other, the ethics of deconstruction, the representation or politics of 'otherness', Deleuzian strategies of difference, and so on. What are the exact implications of this ethical turn for art practice and art philosophy? In which sense the relation between ethics and aesthetics should be oriented or elaborated?


  • Bart Vandenabeele, Philosopher, Catholic University Louvain, member of NGE.
  • Heinz Kimmerle, Philosopher, Erasmus University Rotterdam.
  • Marcel Cobussen, Philosopher of music and musician, Erasmus University Rotterdam.
  • Sarah Leisdovich, Art theorist and video artist, Brussels.


30 May 2003
Rethinking Photography

In the last decade we witnessed a striking renaissance of photography within the visual arts. What are the main reasons of this revival? What are the motives of visual artists to use photography as a means of expression? What is the status of photography with respect to the new media and visual arts in general? Does the photographic medium confront us with a specificity of its own or does it represent only a pastiche form of figurative painting? Does the recent revival oblige us to rethink the photographic image? Which theoretical concepts could highlight this renewed reflection?


  • Hilde van Gelder, Art historian and philosopher, Catholic University of Louvain.
  • Cornée Jacobs, Philosopher of art, President of the NGE.
  • Johan Swinnen, Historian and theorist of photography, Director of HISK (Higher Institute for Fine Arts), Antwerp. Free University of Brussels.
  • Victor Burgin, Photographer, Millard Professor of Fine Arts, Goldsmith College, University of London. Invited.