Erik Hagoort: Diagonal Reciprocity. Thinking About Art Practices of Encounter


World of Art | School for Curatorial Practices and Critical Writing | Year 14

Series of public lectures on curatorial and institutional practice
Reflections and shifts in curatorial, critical and artistic practices

Tuesday, April 9, 2013, at 7 pm
Skuc Gallery, Stari trg 21, Ljubljana

Organised by the SCCA-Ljubljana, Centre for Contemporary ArtsWorld of Art Programme with cooperation of Igor Zabel Association for Culture and Theory and with support of the ERSTE Foundation.

How to Think of Encounter as an Art Practice?
In the last twenty years many different theories have been developed that tried to come to terms with art practices in which the notion of encounter holds a central position. Artists, curators, and theoreticians, all have contributed with different concepts to the understanding of what is actually at stake in the art practices of encounter: collaboration, participation, relation, dialogue, friendship, community.

One promise has always been in the air: the art practices of encounter would always involve participants in the processes of mutual exchange which would be reversible and on equal level: “all participants will be, at once, giver and receiver, producer and consumer, artist and audience”, as curator Michael Brenson has once summarized it. All the way through different theories on art practices of encounter this promise still holds; it is the promise of reciprocity.

Reciprocity has even become a dominant concept of our thinking about the art practices of encounter. Moreover, a discourse of reciprocity has been established, which actually sets the standard of speaking about encounter as an artistic practice.

What is reciprocity?
Does reciprocity really entail equality and reversibility of positions?
Why does the concept of reciprocity appeal so much to artists, curators, theoreticians?
Does reciprocity in fact grasp what the art practices of encounter are about?

Erik Hagoort (1962)

Creating a dialogue between philosophy of ethics and contemporary art is the guiding line of my practice as researcher, curator, art critic, lecturer, and advisor. Usually I collaborate with others: artists, curators, philosophers, and writers. My practice is interdisciplinary, connecting art theory and philosophy of ethics and scholarly research with art practices.

After graduating in theology in 1989 at the University of Amsterdam I specialized in the relation between contemporary art and philosophy of ethics. I wrote numerous art reviews and essays on contemporary art, e.g. national daily newspaper De Volkskrant (1997-2000), Metropolis M, Fonds BKVB, NAi Publishers, Maier Publishing Moscow.

My doctoral research (since 2009) is focused on the conditions that make it possible to think of encounter as an artistic practice. This research has been generously supported by the research group of the Academy of Art and Design St. Joost, and is tutored by Prof. Dr. Paul van Tongeren, Radboud University Nijmegen, and Dr. Camiel van Winkel, Sint-Lukas University College of Art and Design, Brussels.

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