When we think of Wall Street transactions and art world aesthetics—money and drive—two economies come to mind: one regulated, the other subversive. But the art market is really the libidinal substrate of the stock exchange’s bottom line. Accordingly, Libidinal Economies is structured around four global economic crashes – 1971, 1987, 2008, 2010 – showcasing film and video provoked by this cultural condition. Naturally, these points of critical resistance are made from these dual economies that now constitute a closed system.
Beyond a Libidinal Aesthetic (Options)
In the vortex of runaway global debt, Black Monday 2008 is the gravitational pull for part 2. At stake are the virtualized mechanisms of financial markets—algorithms, dark pools and high frequency trading—that yield a lack of lack. Produced from simultaneous frenzy and malaise, these films attribute meaning to an historical trauma that can be belatedly described but never quite named. Our backdrop is present-day Wall Street: a digitized platform where dematerialized currency brings forth a Möbius-like circuit of continuity that knows neither beginning nor end.
Michael Moshe Dahan, introduction
Documentary Montage: 2008 / 2010
Juli Carson, lecture: Art in the Age of Bull Markets
Axel Stockburger, Christoph Meier, Il Grande Silenzio, 2014, 10 min
Hwayeon Nam, Botany of Desire, 2015, 8 min
Yoshua Okón, Salò Island, 2013, 11 min
Maura Brewer, The Surface of Mars, 2016, 12 min
Juli Carson is professor of critical and curatorial Studies and director of the University Art Galleries at UC Irvine. She is author of Exile of the Imaginary: Politics, Aesthetics, Love (Vienna: Generali Foundation, 2007) and The Limits of Representation: Psychoanalysis and Critical Aesthetics (Buenos Aires: Letra Viva Press, 2011). Her forthcoming book is The Conceptual Unconscious: A Poetics of Critique, to be published by PoLyPen.
Michael Moshe Dahan is a scholar and artist currently completing his PhD in performance studies and critical theory at UC Irvine. His research interrogates the intersection of psychoanalysis, political economy, post-colonial theory, and art production. Most recently, his experimental film, Two Points of Failure, was screened at the Rotterdam, Edinburgh, Jihlava, Bucharest, and Melbourne international film festivals, as well as the Tribeca Film Festival and the MAK Center for Art and Architecture in Los Angeles.