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Looting and Totality. Launch event for Diversity of Aesthetics vol.3.

Event Label
Book Presentation
Organisational Units
Art Theory and Cultural Studies
Location Address (1)
Schillerplatz 3
Location ZIP and/or City (1)
1010 Vienna
Location Room (1)

Book presentation of Looting, 3rd volume by Diversity of Aesthetics editorial project with Marina Vishmidt and Jose Rosales.

"Looting is direct action par excellence. But it is also a nearly irrecuperable aesthetic gesture against the police, whiteness, and the regime of property that gives those forces power and purpose. In revealing the innately ideological and social content of property ownership, in demonstrating that all that stands between us and plenty is a thin sheet of plate glass, looting destabilizes the ideological hold of whiteness, property, and capital, and it has done so since the enslaved looted themselves singly and en masse from the plantation."

—Vicky Osterweil

Looting: Diversity of Aesthetics vol.3 features a conversation between Saidiya Hartman, Christina Sharpe, Rinaldo Walcott, and Vicky Osterweil, wherein they discuss looting as a modality of Black struggle and a form of contesting whiteness, property, politics, and modes of governance. Looting is discussed via aesthetic theory, but also in the ways it is, and has been, used by nation-states to protect constituent modes of power and to cultivate Western culture. Looting is an engagement with centuries of Black radical thought, history, and social movements. This event brings together Marina Vishmidt (Univ- Prof., Abteilungsleitung, Abteilung Kunsttheorie) and Jose Rosales (Diversity of Aesthetics co-editor) for a conversation regarding several of the themes and arguments put forward in Looting.  

Diversity of Aesthetics is a multi-volume editorial project started with the goal of facilitating conversations between radical thinkers and cultural workers about artistic production, aesthetics, struggles against racialized capitalism, and revolutionary theory through our shared experiences.

Jose Rosales is an independent researcher, journalist, and co-editor of Diversity of Aesthetics vol.1-3. Their published writings include a range of topics from the Jina Revolution, oil workers strikes in Iran, the legacy of the European experience of 1968, the Hamburg G20 protests and the 'black bloc', and the minor history of 'destituent power', among others.

Marina Vishmidt is a writer, theorist and educator. She is currently the professor of art theory at the University of Applied Arts in Vienna. Her work has appeared in South Atlantic Quarterly, Artforum, Afterall, Journal of Cultural Economy, e-flux journal, Australian Feminist Studies, Mousse, and Radical Philosophy, among others, as well as a number of edited volumes. She is the co-author of Reproducing Autonomy (with Kerstin Stakemeier) (Mute, 2016), and the author of Speculation as a Mode of Production: Forms of Value Subjectivity in Art and Capital (Brill 2018 / Haymarket 2019). Most recently she has edited Speculation for the Documents of Contemporary Art series (Whitechapel/MIT 2023). She is a member of the Marxism in Culture collective and is on the board of the New Perspectives on the Critical Theory of Society series (Bloomsbury Academic). She has taught at Goldsmiths, University of London and in 2022, she was the Rudolf Arnheim Guest Professor in Art History at the Humboldt University in Berlin. Her research has been funded by the DAAD, the European Social Research Council and the Swedish Research Council.

The event is organized with financial support of ÖH.Dok.