Picturing the Present is a performative lecture that explores the dynamic intersections of art practice, criticism, and research. The performance embroils text, voice, image, audio and video to create an inter-textual range of registers that unfold like an archiving of thought. Poetic, critical and imbued with humor, the work blends creativity and critique, fact and fiction, theory and practice to shape a unique form that operates simultaneously as research and practice.
The text was developed during Artist Writing / Artistic Production, a course led by Julieta Aranda, at The New Centre for Research & Practice. Written in diary form, it documents the endeavors of a fictional author who struggles to construct an adequate representation of the present. Each diary entry describes the drawing of a picture as the artist speculates about what kind of practice could be considered accountable and worthy of the times. The text considers what art can offer that critical theory, philosophy and art criticism cannot, what problems occur when art practice simply illustrates theory and art criticism and how might art practice constitute a form of knowledge making in and of itself?
Presented at the Society for Artistic Research (SAR) International Conference on Writing at Royal Academy of Art & Royal Conservatoire The Hauge, Posthuman Glossary at Utrecht University and as part of The Posthuman and Art Research Group at the 7th Annual Conference on New Materialism in Warsaw and Open Fields conference in Riga.