The Art of the Concept: Against Aesthetics, Conference in Zagreb

15.06.2012 - 17.06.2012. / net.kulturni club MaMa [Zagreb]

The International Conference The Art of the Concept: Against Aesthetics will be held in Zagreb from 15 to 17 June.

Aesthetics is not only a (philosophical) discipline, but it is also the name of a privileged corpus of knowledge that emerged in the Enlightenment. Aesthetics is about the arts, but - even more significantly - about the formation of man through art. From the 1750s onwards, aesthetics, therefore, stands at the decisive point of the intersection of cultural production and political practice.

Questioning the reach of aesthetics as a (philosophical) discipline and (anthropological) project is not new and it follows the development of aesthetic thinking as a shadow. Whether it is a theoretical challenge to aesthetics or artistic practices that negate values ​​that are assumed to be specifically aesthetic. Criticism of aesthetics can also point in the direction of expanding the aesthetic domain, which is, for example, the endeavor of Jacques Rancière when he speaks of aesthetics as indiscipline. The question that arises with regard to such anti-, in-, or anesthetic considerations is to what extent they, despite their efforts to abandon aesthetics, still remain in the field of an aesthetic project whose flywheel is a combination of knowledge, art, and a certain understanding of man.

To think of art beyond aesthetics means, on the one hand, therefore, the search for a philosophical apparatus that will not conceptualize art in the form of a science of the senses. And on the other hand, it is a disapproval of the institutional critique of art as a relegation of art to sociology, which is a kind of offshoot of anti-aesthetic tendencies.

In addition to a number of younger theorists, Michel Chion, Martin Hägglund, and Alexander García-Düttmann will also take part in the three-day symposium.

The working language is English. You can find more about the meeting at

The symposium will be artistically rounded off by Markup Popp Oval with his lecture on electronic music at MaMa (June 14), and a concert by Michel Chion at the SC Gallery (June 17).

The art of the term is also the beginning of a two-year project Extended Aesthetic Education: Art Experiment and Political Culture in the Network Age, realized by the Multimedia Institute with (Novi Sad), Kontrapunkt (Skopje), Mute magazine (London), and Berliner Gazette (Berlin).


It is organized by the Multimedia Institute, in cooperation with the French Institute in Zagreb, the Culture of Change of the Student Center in Zagreb, and the Center for Dramatic Arts.

Supported by the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Croatia / Office for Education, Culture, and Sports of the City of Zagreb

The Aesthetic Education Expanded project is funded by the European Commission, within the Culture 2007-2013 program