Jelena Vesić: Cordially Meeting the Others
Lecture 01.06.17, 7 pm
Cordially Meeting the Others: The Artistic Life of the Pioneer Plaque and (Post-)Colonial Discontents in the Image of Universal Humans
Lecture by Jelena Vesić, Goethe-Institut Postdoctoral Fellow at Haus der Kunst; researcher on the discursive-exhibition chapter "Postcolonial: 1955–1980"
All of us are now sure that the glut of history, rumor, and evidence we call the modernist tradition is being circumscribed by a horizon. Looking down, we see more clearly its "laws" of progress, its armature hammered out of idealist philosophy, its military metaphors of advance and conquest. What a sight it is – or was!
(Brian O'Doherty, "Inside the White Cube," 1976)
This lecture examines post-colonial image politics and art-historical concepts via an analysis of the representation of universal human(s) as seen on the Pioneer Plaque, a anodized gold aluminum plate that was attached to the Pioneer 10 and Pioneer 11 spacecrafts in 1972 and 1973. This golden plaque was designed as a pictogram documenting the existence of intelligent life on earth and provides a generic image of humans to be presented to potential intelligent Others. The image was a part of NASA experiments and was also reproduced on the Golden Record of the Voyager spacecraft launched in 1977 – the first space mission to leave the solar system and enter interstellar space.
The Pioneer Plaque represents the first example of a human-made exhibition-artifact that depicts the image of the human Self for the "gaze" of the nonhuman Other. At the same time it remains chained to the Western humanist pictorial tradition, as well as to what the art historian Erwin Panofsky called "perspective as symbolic form."
Jelena Vesić is an independent curator, writer, and lecturer. Active in the field of publishing, research, and an exhibition practice that intertwines political theory and contemporary art, she was co-editor of "Prelom — Journal of Images and Politics" (2001–2010, Belgrade), co-editor of "Red Thread" journal (Istanbul) and a member of the editorial board of "ARTMargins" (MIT Press). She has published numerous essays on curatorial practice, art historical methodology, exhibition history, and the politics of display. Her most recent book "On Neutrality" (in collaboration. with Vladimir Jerić Vlidi and Rachel O'Reilly) is part of the edition Non-Aligned Modernity (MoCA, Belgrade), which is dedicated to exploring different cases of the culture and politics of the Non-Aligned Movement as the most significant decolonization movement of the twentieth century.
Lecture made possible by
Goethe-Institut and Kulturstiftung des Bundes
Stretch your view
Stretch your view
Postwar / Trailer
The trailer gives an impression of the extensive exhibition and the works on view. In eight dramatic chapters, the exhibition guides visitors through the first 20 years following the end of World War II. MORE
Postwar: Art Between the Pacific and the Atlantic, 1945–1965 - Exhibition Guide
DER ÖFFENTLICHKEIT / Annual Lecture: Noortje Marres
In her lecture Noortje Marres will discuss what makes a public affair. MORE
Teachers’ Guide for the exhibition “Postwar: Art between the Pacific and the Atlantic, 1945-1965”. MORE
Postwar / exhibition film
The video allows a closer look at the works in the exhibition and its structure, commented by the three co-curators of the exhibition, Okwui Enwezor, Katy Siegel and Ulrich Wilmes. MORE
"Postwar – Art between the Pacific and the Atlantic, 1945-1965"
21.05 – 24.05.14
Convened at Haus der Kunst in collaboration with the Tate Modern in 21-24 May, 2014, the "Postwar — Art between the Pacific and Atlantic, 1945-1965" conference is an attempt to reconsider and re-examine the two decades following World War II. MORE
Hans Haacke: Gift Horse
27.04 – 20.08.17
Haus der Kunst is proud to present the exhibition of Hans Haacke's celebrated monumental sculpture Gift Horse (2015). MORE
Frank Bowling: Mappa Mundi
23.06.17 – 07.01.18
The comprehensive overview presents rare and never-before exhibited large-scale paintings along with other works by the Guyanese-born British painter Frank Bowling. MORE
Saturday, 29.07, 11 am
Art Lab III – Paradises: Inspired by the Thomas Struth exhibition, we create our own paradises, using materials we collect in the English Garden or find in our studio. MORE
Saturday, 02.09, 2 pm
In the exhibition, the famous artist Thomas Struth presents his own individual views of people. In the studio, you create your own novel and individual portraits: professional photographers show you how to create impressive photographs that are "more than just snapshots". MORE
Saturday, 09.09, 11 am
Art Lab IV: Your city – your street. From Düsseldorf to New York – Thomas Struth leads us around the world with his road pictures. We gather ideas in the exhibition and then become architects and urban planners in the studio. MORE
Saturday, 16.09, 2 pm
We invent and craft our own characters and make them come alive. We tell a story. Those who like to cut and edit are in the right place here! MORE