Promotion of the book “Art and Revolution” by Gerald Raunig and a Discussion with Ivana Dragsic

Within the framework of the 9th edition of CRIC - Festival for Critical Culture, this year...

Within the framework of the 9th edition of CRIC – Festival for Critical Culture, this year Kontrapunkt, in it’s Punctum edition, dedicated to the new critical and theoretical streams of thought and action, publishes three books by one of the most significant and challenging/provocative art theorists and philosophers, the complexly polemical Gerald Raunig. In the Macedonian language, we will have Raunig’s three most significant books: “Art and Revolution” translated by Katerina Shekutkovska, “Dividuum” and “Dissemblage”, translated by Zharko Trajanoski, which soon, according to the copyleft principle that Raunig, as well Kontrapunkt highly represent, will be published online, in PDF format.On June 3, starting at 19:30 in the National Gallery “Chifte Amam”, through a dialogue between Raunig and Ivana Dragšić, the cult book “Art and Revolution” will be promoted, brilliantly translated by Katerina Shekutkovska from German language.”Art and Revolution” proposes an alternative history of the art of the “long twentieth century” covering the period from the Paris Commune in 1871 to the turbulent anti-globalization protests in Genoa in 2001. Making a detailed, precise and theoretical-creative transition from the Situationists and Sergei Eisenstein to Viennese Actionism and the Publixtheatre Caravan as a project of Volxtheater Favoriten, an international theater troupe based in Vienna that is artistically and deeply politically charged and that develops critical performances, “Art and Revolution” refers to the revolutionary steps in art and society and optimistically outlines the way out of his stories of tragic failure and unequivocal disaster.

By eloquently applying Deleuze and Guattari’s ideas and postulates about the “machine”, Raunig extends the poststructuralist theory of revolution to the explosive nexus of art and activism. Art and Revolution encourages new generations of artists and thinkers to refuse participation in worn-out recipes dictated by the market and authority, and instead create radical new methods of socio-cultural engagement. Raunig develops a necessary, contemporary conception of political change—one that transcends outdated formulations of insurrection and resistance. According to Raunig, too much blood and ink has been spilled for the artistic machines to allow themselves to remain separate from the revolutionary machines.

“Art and Revolution” by Gerald Raunig is much more than a scholarly work – this book is an affirmation of new constitutive practices, written in the tumultuous environment of social movements of the twentieth century. The anti-globalization movement is as much a point of departure for the book as the discourses around constitutive power and the multitude (according to Antonio Negri) and around the political critique of representation by Félix Guattari, Gilles Deleuze and Michel Foucault for the Zapatistas, as for the central question of art and the revolution around the forms of interweaving between artistic and revolutionary machines, the anti-racist, queer-feminist and nomadic practices of the Volks-theatre-caravan are used as exemplary ground in “Art and Revolution”.

In the introduction to the 2017 edition, Gerald Raunig writes: “Art historiography, art criticism, and aesthetics are happily silent about political art and the political in specific artistic practices, and they do this even more prominently in terms of the intertwining of art and revolution.” So many great names in art history were also involved in revolutions, and the dangerous intersections of artistic and political activism are constantly downplayed, presented as harmless or unintentional. Here the interweaving must not happen, art as well as revolution loses its machine quality, through the historicization and decomposition of art sciences.”

The book was published with the support of the Goethe Institute – Skopje

Gerald Raunig is a philosopher and theorist. He works at eipcp (European Institute for Progressive Cultural Policies) as one of the editors of the multilingual publishing platform and as a professor of philosophy at Zürcher Hochschule der Künste.

His books have been translated into English, Serbian, Spanish, Slovenian, Russian, Italian, Dutch, Turkish, and now into Macedonian by Kontrapunkt in it’s Punctum book edition, part of the CRIC platform-a festival for critical culture, and. Among the more significant books translated into English in recent times are: “Art and Revolution: Transversal Activism in the Long Twentieth Century”, translated by Aileen Derieg, New York/Los Angeles: Semiotext(e)/MIT Press 2007; “Art and Contemporary Critical Practice. Reinventing Institutional Critique”, London: mayflybooks 2009 (Ed., with Gene Ray); “A Thousand Machines”, translated by Aileen Derieg, New York/Los Angeles: Semiotext(e)/MIT Press 2010; “Critique of Creativity”, London: mayflybooks 2011 (Ed., with Gene Ray and Ulf Wuggenig); “Factories of Knowledge, Industries of Creativity”, translated by Aileen Derieg, New York/Los Angeles: Semiotext(e)/MIT Press 2013; “Dividuum: Mechanic Capitalism and Molecular Revolution Vol.1”, Vol.1, translated by Aileen Derieg, New York/Los Angeles: Semiotext(e)/MIT Press 2016; “Dissemblage: Mechanic Capitalism and Molecular Revolution Vol. 2”, “Minor Compositions” 2022. Forthcoming is “Making Multiplicity”, Polity Press 2024.

In recent years, a significant part of Raunig’s time has been working and living in Malaga, Andalusia, where he researches and works with autonomous collectives and alternative forms of self-organization.

Ivana Dragsic is a sociologist and civil operator interested in countercultural practices, institutional innovation and leisure. She is an active researcher, author and editor on the topics of commons and ecofeminism, with strong affinity towards their intertwining concepts: public space, urban greenery, citizens’ participation, resource management, UBI, care and conviviality. Dragsic is an amateur artist and performer, and plays music on the radio and in clubs.


CRIC – Festival for Critical Culture is financially supported by the Goethe Institute, the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of North Macedonia and the Creative Europe program of the European Commission, financed by the European Union. However, the views and opinions expressed therein are those of the author(s) alone and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or the European Education Agency (EACEA). Neither the European Union nor the grantor can be held responsible for them. As well as the Agenzia Italiana per la Cooperazione allo Sviluppo (AICS), Tirana in the framework of the project “Culture and Creativity for the Western Balkans” (CC4WBs), a project funded by the European Union that aims to encourage dialogue in the Western Balkans by strengthening cultural and creative sectors for increased socio-economic impact.

#CC4WBs, #CCI #culture #GoetheInstituteSkopje.

Shared on: June 30, 2024 at 6:42 pm