lundi 25 octobre 2010

Tableau / Dispositif / Apparatus

Project organisers: Mick Finch and Jane Lee, The School of Art, Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design. Contact : Mick Finch:

Tableau / Dispositif / Apparatus

The Tableau Project is a series of events culminating in a 2 day conference at Tate Modern in 2011 that broadly addresses questions about the structuring of pictorial representation and forms. Keynote presentations from Philip Armstrong, Fulvia Carnevale, Jean François Chevrier and Michael Fried will take place on the 1st day of the Tate conference followed by a 2nd day of research papers, in preparation for this, there will be 2 research symposia. In addition there will be a 3 day seminar given by Jean François Chevrier. Where possible there will be general access to these events. The project is organised by Mick Finch and Jane Lee, The School of Art, Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design.

Saturday 27 November 2010.
Research Symposium 1,
10am - 4pm at Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design,
The Viewing Theatre, 109
111 Charing Cross Road

presentations by:
Catrina Cojanu (RCA) – Painting as Gaze: On the Revelatory Force of the Arabesque
Adi Efal (University of Cologne) – The two faces of the figure: plastic and philological
Cedric Loire (Lille University) – title tbc
Bettina Reiber (CSM) – Theorising Painting: Modernism, Hegel, Heidegger

The word tableau does not seamlessly translate into painting as witnessed in its central use in Michael Fried’s recent book Why Photography Matters as Art Never Before (2008). In recent years, it has taken its place in a series of discourses that address questions of artistic practice (and particularly pictorial practice), the status of the art object and questions of spectatorship. The centrality of tableau to recent discussions about photographic artistic practice is preceded by its presence in France in discussions around painting that represented an early example of a formulation of an expanded field in this medium. Jean-François Chevrier has alluded to the return of tableau as a term and its possible implications in an essay, “The Adventures of the Picture Form in the History of Photography” (1989):

"The restitution of the tableau form (to which the art of the 1960s and 1970s, it will be recalled, was largely opposed) has the primary aim of restoring the distance to the object-image necessary for the confrontational experience, but implies no nostalgia for painting and no specifically “reactionary” impulse. The frontality of the picture hung on or affixed to the wall and its autonomy as an object are not sufficient as finalities. It is not a matter of elevating the photographic image to the place and rank of painting. It is about using the tableau form to reactivate a thinking based on fragments, openness and contradiction, not the utopia of a comprehensive systematic order."

This idea of tableau as ‘image-object’ is central to Michael Fried’s recent book in which he explores a structural relationship between painting and photography as associated pictorial forms.
The concepts of apparatus (mostly associated with Althusser) and dispositif (associated with Foucault and Agamben) bear many structural similarities to these emerging formulations of the tableau where questions of ideology and signification are at work. The increasing use of all three terms in critical visual art practices is the basis for this conference.
The first day of the conference will be for keynote presentations, the second day for research papers in response to a call for papers.

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