Re: Kristeva - in the airplane /H. HAACKE

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Posted by stephan pascher on December 03, 1996 at 18:52:01:

In Reply to: Re: Kristeva - in the airplane /H. HAACKE posted by Robert Fleck on November 23, 1996 at 19:37:36:

: : the problem with her description of the Hans Haacke installation
: : is that she strips it off its political content and
: : reduces it to an experimental, purley psychological
: : event.. this is to my understanding a complete
: : misreading of Haacke's piece...
: : no way, Haacke isn't interesting to talk to our
: : psyche but to problematize a specific history in an outspoke way.... a history
: : Kristeva alludes to it only in one sentense in a very
: : abstract way...
: : that was to me very disappointing

: - your remark to the way who kristeva is considering the hans haacke piece
: in Venice 1993 is interesting; but the very psychological point of view
: developped by kristeva, forgetting the political issue in Haackes work, is
: perhaps also a sign how difficult it is (or can be) for a large public, who
: is not familiar with the art theories in general and the work of Haacke, to
: perceive the political issue in Haackes work...

: robert fleck

". . . the very pscyhological point of view developped by Kristeva, forgetting the political issues in Haacke's work" is anything but "a sign (of) how difficult it is . . . to perceive the political issue in Haacke's work." I am not familiar with Kristeva's interpretation of the Haacke intervention, however, from what you describe, her reading of it as a "psychological event" could only be a sign of some rather unfortunate (unknown to me) motivation on her part, in other words, purely ideological. I am familiar with the Haacke Venice piece, as well as much of his other work, and it is virtually impossible not to recognize the political content. Infact, Haacke's work is for the most part, while indeed complex, not explicitly theoretical, but rather a good example (and there are precious few) of art work as a praxis of critical intervention. His work does not demand on the part of the viewer any detailed familiarity with art theory, infact, it aspires to its very opposite. Take note of the various reactions it has generated: the foreclosure of the Guggenheim exhibition, the Graz Monument burning, . . . In particular, Haacke's Biennale installation deals explicitly with specific historical formations, and communicates most directly on at least a number of levels, not requiring any specialized "art knowledge(s)." To produce any other reading, in disregard of that content, is at best an aesthetic gesture.

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