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UAL Research Online

Itinerant Improvisations From My Favourite Things to an Agency of Night

Seth, John (2004) Itinerant Improvisations From My Favourite Things to an Agency of Night. In: After Criticism: New Responses to Art and Performance. Blackwell, pp. 137-155. ISBN 0-631-23284-2

Type of Research: Book Section
Creators: Seth, John

The chapter was commissioned by the editor Dr Gavin Butt as part of a collection of essays that seek to address through demonstration as much as analysis the ‘performative’ writerly mode of art criticism contra the conventional mode of ‘critical distance’. The publication was peer reviewed and is one of the book series titled New Interventions in Art History (series editor Dr Dana Arnold). The essay, “Itinerant Improvisations”, is the outcome of research into the use of improvisation in the work of Gabriel Orozco, the music of John Coltrane and Ornette Coleman. The idea of improvisation is combined with an exploration of the notion of the ‘subject’ and ‘subjectivity’ in Anne Tallentire’s 'Instances'(1999), James Baldwin’s 'Another Country' (1962) and in the experience of the migrant/refugee at the turn of the 21st Century. The essay overturns the usual definition of improvisation as self-expression with the idea of a ‘pragmatics’ of subject-construction, of making new subject positions. The essay argues for the idea of the construction of subject position, made and remade (forming, deforming, reforming), that is necessarily contingent and constitutive. The writing of the essay demonstrates the developing theoretical positions being advanced through an improvisatory form that moves between the deployment of different examples – art works, music, literature – and theoretical/philosophical ideas. The book includes chapter contributions from: Rebecca Schneider (Brown University) Jane Blocker (University of Minnesota), Jennifer Doyle (University of California), Niru Ratman (STORE Gallery, London), José Esteban Muñoz (Tish School of Art), Irit Rogoff (Goldsmiths), Mathew Goulish (Art Inst Chicago) and Kate Love (Central Saint Martins). Reviews: Amna Malik, 'Art Monthly', no. 208, October 2005, pp. 37-38; Camilla Javling, 'Contemporary', issue 72, 2004; Claire MacDonald, 'Performance Research', vol. 10, no. 2, June 2005, pp. 153-5; Nikki Cesare, 'TDR', vol. 50, no. 4, winter 2006, pp. 178-9.

Keywords/subjects not otherwise listed: RAE2008 UoA63
Publisher/Broadcaster/Company: Blackwell
Your affiliations with UAL: Colleges > Central Saint Martins
Date: 2004
Date Deposited: 03 Dec 2009 23:33
Last Modified: 30 Jan 2014 13:26
Item ID: 1491
URI: https://ualresearchonline.arts.ac.uk/id/eprint/1491

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