Rupture, Extraction and Blurred Lines: an Exploration of the Politics and Aesthetics of Liminality in the Films Synophresia Nervosa and Private Life

Date

2017-06-22

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Conference

Peer reviewed

No

Abstract

The paper will screen and discuss sections from my films Synophresia Nervosa (2014) and Private Life (2015). Both films place the concept of extraction as central to the work, but this concept is extended to encompass ideas of rupture, blurred lines and theft. The aesthetic and political consequences of liminality are explored and extended in relation to the concept of subjectivity and creativity, and what is lost or taken in the creative process, or more explicitly what is extracted by capitalism. I also interrogate the virtual as a liminal space that subverts and blurs the lines between the private and work. Arguing through post-operaismo that our lives and experiences have become a kind of social factory for capital.

Synophresia Nervosa is set in the artists’ studio and explores the idea of the ‘creative’ subject or artist, and the points at which ideas are extracted. I identify the problem of ‘brain drain’ in the ideas lab in relation to Marx’s idea of the general intellect. The film considers the way transformations of the artistic ‘technique’ borrow from the extractive technique, or conversely the way capitalism borrows from art through by the subjectification of extraction; this subjectification of extraction is made explicit by the sacrifice of body parts and mind.

Private Life follows a manager and those he manages, as he faces constraints put on him by the administration of the virtual system ‘Persochip’. Persochip facilitates the blurring between work and life and I will explain the ways capitalism uses technology (relative surplus value) to augment time (absolute surplus value) and space and blur the lines between production and reproduction. Using Lazzarato’s conception of the subject, I will explain that these ‘machines’ are created and constructed through the employment of our own subjectivity.

Description

Keywords

Extraction, Culture, Work, Art Film

Citation

Brand, C. (2017) Rupture, Extraction and Blurred Lines: an Exploration of the Politics and Aesthetics of Liminality in the Films Synophresia Nervosa and Private Life. Borderlines Conference, De Montfort University, Leicester, June 2017.

Rights

Research Institute

Institute of Art and Design