Manifesto for an approach to art-informed research

Proposition for a collective discussion

/The program asserts its nomadic character through its mode of operation, its status and its worldview, practising artistic research, understood as a tool for action and a probe for investigating worlds.

/Its research agenda is by its very definition collective. Each member of the group is constituted as a practitioner without any distinction as to their role. Our practice is carried out on the 1:1 scale: we do not “perform” our experiences, but engage in mapping with our feet.

/A conceptual node, redefined each year, underpins the collective thought process, repurposing the conceptual nodes of previous years to new ends, thus ensuring both the continuity and dynamic of the collective process (metamorphosis without abandonment).

/Our work thus develops through methodological slippage. This methodology favours the migration of bodies and of concepts that is inherent to any research practice. For a key corollary of such a practice is to transport us elsewhere. The work is sown and spread by affinities and by contagions.

/The program wagers on fostering the erotetic dimension in everyone, — that is, on cultivating forms of questioning based on desires, the imagination, memory and affect, without by any means neglecting the properly speculative dimension.

/The program operates by orchestrating a dialogue of multiple voices, mindful of both instituted knowledge and subaltern or little recognized modes of knowledge. We emphasize the significance of “incidental” knowledge (arising unintentionally).

/The year is made up of moments, taking the form of meetings, travel, discussions and screenings, which are articulated conceptually in order to augment their heuristic potential. The moments are by turn instituant and destituant.

/The program develops an ecosophy founded on the free usership of all modes of knowledge, challenging all forms of possessive individualism, above all the institutions of authorship and spectatorship. The idea is to experiment with a mode of operating in common, seeking to bring about the emergence of a condividuality through the denaturalization and the deactivation of the individual. Divided, together.

/By actively practising theory, the collective becomes at once object and method. It is only through the collective mobilization of different systems of knowing that one arrives at new modes of knowledge and the collective recomposition of forms and desires.

/The program cultivates instituant processes even as it values instituted forms of knowledge as moments of condensation, necessary to sustaining research over time. The program’s annual journal, Les Cahiers du DSRA, is exemplary of such a form, as are the group’s exhibitions, writings and evaluation processes themselves.

/In parallel to the activities undertaken collectively, the practitioners carry out more personal research projects, integrating artistic production and theoretical reflexion. The individual research project leads, after successfully completing three years in the program, to the granting of a PhD-level Diplôme Supérieur de Recherche en Art (DSRA). Les Cahiers du DSRA, published at the end of each annual session, corroborate and expand the program’s activities, bringing together the participants’ work with contributions from invited guests.

/In this way the program ensures the rigour of the research undertaken. Our exigence, like our success, entails no consecration.

/Each year the program establishes ties with a variety of institutional interlocutors and other actors engaged in different fields — not necessarily linked to art — with whom it creates partnerships. Beginning this year, the direction has become bicorporal (and not merely bicephalous).

/Going forward, it is the vocation of this manifesto to be discussed and re-elaborated within the group.

Photo © Julio Cortazar, Carol Dunlop, voyage Paris-Marseille, 1982 (In Los autonautas de la cosmoruta)

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