BORIS GROYS: The Topology of Contemporary Art PART 2: MULTIPLE MODERNITIES. 5. MONICA AMOR: On the Contingency of. Contemporary Art in Time” considers some examples, and conse- quences, of .. Cf. Boris Groys, “The Topology of Contemporary Art,” in Antinomies of Art. Synopsis: To understand the qualitative properties of “Contemporary Art”, the Author examines the interplay between Modern & Post-modern.

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To compare one installation to another installation we have contemoprary create a new installation that would be a place of such a comparison. Every image and object in the installation can be seen as being true, unconcealed, present — but only inside the installation space. A video or film installation secularizes the conditions of film presentation.

According to Benjamin, in our age the artwork leaves its original context and begins to circulate anonymously in the networks of mass communication, reproduction and distribution. By continuing to use this website, you agree to their use.

The contemporary artistic zrt has a goal to present the scene, the context, the strategy of this differentiation as it takes place here and now — that is why it can be called genuinely contemporary, indeed.

The Topology of Contemporary Art: Boris Groys | alfredcrucible

The modernist production by negation is governed by reproduction of the means of comparison — of a certain historical narrative, of a certain artistic medium, of a certain visual language, of a certain fixed context of comparison.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Have the prints become originals, especially as they all might be slightly different, or still just different versions of copies? The installation is, above all, a socially codified variation of individual flaneurship as it was described by Benjamin, and therefore, a place for the aura, for “profane illumination.

But if the difference between original and copy is only a topological one — that means if it is only a difference between a closed, fixed, marked, auratic context and an open, unmarked, profane space of anonymous mass circulation — then not only the operation of dislocation and deterritorialisation of the original is possible, but also the operation of relocation and reterritorialisation of the copy.

You are commenting using your WordPress. The artist was supposed to embody “active nihilism” — the nothingness that originates everything.


Taken contemporarg these images and objects do not raise the claim to be unconcealed and true. Is his assertion less relevant 8 years later, as the preponderance of technology has made virtual experience a part of daily life — perhaps desensitizing the viewer to the change in media. The artwork that is conceived as a machine of infinite expansion and topolgoy is not an open artwork but an artistic counterpart of an imperial hybris. The time of contemplation must be continually renegotiated cotnemporary artist and spectator.

And this kind of reproduction infects the creative act from the beginning. In this sense, a copy is never really a copy — but rather always a new original in a new context.

That does not mean, however, that the installation is somehow “immaterial.

An by doing so an installation manifests here and now certain decisions about what is old and what is new, what is an original and what is a copy. But they are unconcealed only as long as they are parts of this individual installation.

The installation is a place of openness, of bors, of unconcealment precisely because it situates inside its finite space images and objects that also circulate in the outside space — and in this way it opens itself to its outside. The film spectator is not anymore immobilised, bound to a seat and left in the darkness — being supposed to watch a movie from its beginning to its end.

Rather, today’s contemporary art demonstrates the way in comtemporary the contemporary as such shows itself — the act of presenting the present. The closure is here not an contemporarg to the openness but its precondition. But how can an individual artist prove that he or she is really, genuinely creative?

This paradoxical character of the Modern project was recognized and described by a number of the theoreticians and reflected on by many artists in the 60s and 70s. The iconoclastic images of destruction and reduction were destined to serve as the icons of the future. Should he or she stand contemoprary and allow the pictures to play before him as in a movie noris, or move further?

The modern artwork is re-presented and re-cognized before it is produced.

The Topology of Contemporary Art: Boris Groys

It remains maybe the same copy — but it becomes different originals. Clearly a situation arises here in which the contradictory expectations of a visit to a movie theatre and a visit to an exhibition space create a conflict for the visitor: Indeed, Kierkegaard states that for contemlorary spectator who would be contemporary of Jesus Christ it was impossible to recognize in Christ a new God precisely because he didn’t look new — the figure of Christ initially looked like that of every other ordinary human being at that historical time.


In a certain sense the installation is for our time what the novel was for the 19th Century. In fact, the aura, as described by Benjamin, only comes into being thanks to the modern technique of reproduction. But maybe not the loss of the aura but, rather, its emergence gives us the opportunity to reach a better understanding of the processes taking place in the today’s art, operating predominantly with the new media and techniques of reproduction; that is, to a better understanding, not only of the destiny of the original, but also of the destiny of the copy in our culture.

Rather, the comparison takes place before the emergence of a new, radical, iconoclastic artwork-and virtually produces this new artwork. The post-modern criticism put this unconditional claim into question — but without asking about the conditions of truth understood as presence, as unconcealment. But postmodernist art does not formulate any own claim to truth remaining exclusively critical and deconstructive.

The traditional, mimetic artwork was subjected to the iconoclastic, destructive work of analysis and reduction. The installation formulate these conditions by creating a finite, closed space which becomes the space of open conflict and unavoidable decision between original and reproduction, between presence and representation, between unconcealed and concealed.

I really need more clarification I suppose before discussion. That shows very clearly that a film is radically, essentially changed by being put under the conditions of an installation visit — being a same copy the film oof a different original.

You are commenting using your Twitter account. At the same time an installation is not a manifestation of already existing relationships among things but, precisely, topokogy the contrary, an installation offers an opportunity to use the things and images of our civilization in a very subjective, individual way.