December 5, 2014

Peter Osborne and Catherine Malabou Inaugural Visiting Chair, Philosophy in the Context of Art

Royal Institute of Art in Stockholm
Left: Professor Catherine Malabou, Centre for Research in Modern European Philosophy, Kingston University London. Photo: Guillaume Darribau. Right: Professor Peter Osborne, Centre for Research in Modern European Philosophy, Kingston University London. Photo: Ilgin Yanmaz.

The Royal Institute of Art/ Kungl. Konsthögskolan in Stockholm, in cooperation with the Centre for Research in Modern European Philosophy [CRMEP], Kingston University, London, launches an annually rotating International Visiting Chair in Philosophy in the Context of Art in autumn 2015. The activities of the Chair, shared by Professors Peter Osborne and Catherine Malabou, are intended to provide students of the Royal Institute of Art with a philosophical research climate within the practice of visual art and to explore contemporary philosophical approaches to art and culture.

The programme intends to present and develop the latest forms of European philosophy in the context of art, to invite its reflexive appropriation by artistic communities and to develop a dialogue between philosophical and artistic discourses, rather than to offer fixed versions of philosophical positions, to overdetermine artistic practices by philosophical principles, or to restrict the artistic significance of philosophy for art to the sub-disciplines of aesthetics and philosophy of art. The role of philosophy within discourses on and of the arts has become increasingly central yet also increasingly problematic over the last two decades. Institutions of art education in Europe have yet to develop satisfactory ways of introducing philosophical components, either as conditions of artistic production or in the PhD level assessment of “practice as research,” of a quality adequate to such philosophical work itself.

The programme will comprise intensive postgraduate seminars with an annual concluding international conference and publication thematically related to the philosophical trajectory explored within the given semester.


About the International Visiting Chair
Professors Peter Osborne and Catherine Malabou will develop a programme based on the reflexive relocation of ongoing research in modern European philosophy into the context of postgraduate education at the Royal Institute of Art. The programme will involve research into the current state of concepts central to philosophical research that have a distinct but as yet unexplored relevance to art practices and discourses more generally.

Since the completion of Anywhere or Not at All: Philosophy of Contemporary Art (2013) which sets out to construct a critical concept of contemporary art through a philosophical inquiry into the conceptual aspects of its historical formation since the 1960s, Peter Osborne has opened a further investigation of three main overlapping concepts: form, image and the interesting. Formin the context of the relationship between social, cultural, and artistic forms, with particular reference to the temporal dimensions of the experience of abstraction in both art and commodity form. Image—in its role as a formal abstraction and a mediating form between sensibility and conceptuality. The interesting—as a concept that extends the previous recovery of the genealogy of “epistemological aesthetic” of early German Romanticism within contemporary art, as the transcendental condition of other types of art judgment.

Catherine Malabou’s contention that plasticity has become a major category in philosophy, arts, psychology, neurobiology and cell biology has opened up new perspectives on the way in which subjectivity and materiality, mind and body, are interrelated, along with new relationships between philosophy, arts and biology. In different ways, Malabou has studied how these interrelated significations are determining a vision of the form that would no longer be related to presence but to temporality (The Future of Hegel, 2004), historical metamorphoses (The Heidegger Change, 2012), and a change of paradigm from the trace to neural connectivity (What Should We Do With Our Brain? and Plasticity at the Dusk of Writing, 2008). 


Further information
The Royal Institute of Art is a leading art institution of higher education located in Stockholm that offers both undergraduate and post graduate studies in Fine Arts and Architecture. For further details about this programme and the application process, contact Anneli Hovberger, Director of Academic Administration, at [email protected].



Peter Osborne and Catherine Malabou: inaugural International Visiting Chair at Royal Institute of Art Stockholm

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