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The Emergent Artistic Object in the Postconceptual Condition

The dissertation of Jack Segbars investigates the fabric and the infrastructure of contemporary artistic production. The focal question is how the contemporary field of institutional artistic production is organised and how the relations between its actors and functions: artists, curators, institution, governance and theory are structured, and how the artistic object that results from their interaction is produced. The backdrop of this investigation, is the condition of cognitive capitalism. Production and working-relations in late capitalism as analysed by Paolo Virno, are characterized by the primacy of communications. It presumes that no longer there is a clear demarcation between aesthetics, labour and politics in the general make-up of production and economy.The second backdrop is the postconceptual condition, as formulated by British philosopher Peter Osborne. He describes how the authorship of the art-object has shifted to the institutional platform (museum, presentation-space) and how the ‘project’ has become the general form of production. This situation particularly affects artistic production and the relationships between the main actors in regards to who holds the authorship over the artistic object. Both these movements have led to significant changes in how to consider the status of authorship in artistic production. Together they shape the theoretical basis for the research.

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