Marina Vishmidt

23 May 2022

Solidarity and Dispersion: Measure of an Abstract Subject

This seminar will focus on thinking that has been slowly generating for and around me on the possibility of autonomy in the case of a dispersive or diffuse subject, that is, whether you can have autonomy without property, or at least, not private property. This includes questions of self-ownership and the shift from labour to assets as the chief structure of valorisation in platform economies, and the institutional systems they have redefined such as art, education and social reproduction. The production of waste seems a logical consequence from the ‘non-reproduction’ already established as an economic given for many rendered surplus by contemporary capitalist relations. We will look at a few works by Porpentine, terra0 and others to try and get (speculative) traction on these shifts.

Required Reading:

Kevin Floyd, ‘Automatic Subjects: Gendered Labour and Abstract Life’, _Historical Materialism_ 24.2, 2016, 61–86

Laura Lotti, ‘Contemporary art, capitalization and the blockchain: On the autonomy and automation of art’s value’, _Finance and Society_, 2:2, 96-110, 2018

Elisabeth Nicula, ‘The Artist is the Void’,

Marina Vishmidt (born 1976) is an American writer, editor and critic. She lectures at the Centre for Cultural Studies at Goldsmiths, University of London in the MA program Culture Industry, and teaches Art Theory in the MA Art Praxis at the Dutch Art Institute in Arnhem. Her research mainly concerns the relationship between art, value and labour. She further explores this through works on debt, social reproduction and artistic entrepreneurialism. In 2013, she completed her PhD entitled ‘Speculation as a Mode of Production in Art andCapital’ at the Queen Mary University of London. Vishmidt frequently collaborates with various artists and activists. In 2010, she contributed texts to the 4th instalment of the project Lying Freely by artist Ruth Buchanan which took the form of a book. She was also part of a long-term research group of artists, writers, architects and musicians who worked together on the historical and contemporary presentation, documentation and reception of Victory over the Sun a Russian Futurist opera that premiered in 1913 in Saint Petersburg. Vishmidt is part of the working group of Cinenova a London-based feminist film and video distributor.