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Archive for the ‘detournement’ tag

Distortion-pseudo society

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In the art group Situationist International, which Jorn along with among others the French theorist Guy Debord had founded a few years before his exhibition in Paris, this process was referred to as détournement. In short détournement – which directly translated means distortion – is a kind of anti-artistic method where the past – and, indeed, the whole world – is appropriated, annihilated and scandalized. Through this process a way opens out of the meaningless and empty pseudo-society that the artists referred to as the Society of the Spectacle.

This notion also contains a definite showdown with art as an elevated activity in order to see the artistic process as something containing a proletarian revolutionary potential. Guy Debord went as far as to believe that in order to not be swallowed by the meaningless stream of hollow representations of the Society of the Spectacle art had to be critical and negating and in the end renounce every kind of visual activity. In particular, the last part of it was a cause for different opinions among the members of Situationist International, where for instance Jorn never totally rejected the production of artistic objects. The result was that Jorn was excluded from the group along with a number of other members, and finally the group dissolved.

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May 8th, 2009 at 10:03 pm

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