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Non-philosophy and contemporary art

Asmund Havsteen-Mikkelsen
a non-philosophical proposition
'There is a thinking that happens in contemporary art that I believe can be productively seen as ‘non-philosophy’. The act of non-philosophy transforms the complex experience of life into something new.

The ‘non’ added to ‘philosophy’ points to a distance between the conceptual space of philosophy and the concrete space of life, in all its complexity and contradictions. It is ‘non’ because it admits to its own deficiency, its own lack of completion and perfection. This act of transposing but also transforming theory so that it is useful is exactly what makes the contemporary artist a non-philosopher, because he has taken a position in the world in order to achieve something.

The contemporary artist develops an autonomous position vis-à-vis the present configuration of forces–he thinks within an already established space of artistic movements. His is a thinking-doing that is anarchistic, autarkic and experimental, witty, serious, open-minded, questioning, following mental lines of flight … In this state of mind I locate the fundamental thought-power of the contemporary artist as a non-philosopher.'

Language: English