[NetBehaviour] DATA browser 04.

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Wed Sep 2 16:28:31 CEST 2009

DATA browser 04.

Creating Insecurity: art and culture in the age of security edited by
Wolfgang Sützl & Geoff Cox

Giorgio Agamben | Konrad Becker | Bureau of Inverse Technology | Geoff
Cox | Florian Cramer | glorious ninth | Brian Holmes | carlos
katastrofsky | Martin Knahl | Norbert Koppensteiner | Daniela Ingruber |
The Institute for Applied Autonomy | Naeem Mohaiemen | Mukul Patel |
Luis Silva | Wolfgang Sützl | Tiziana Terranova | McKenzie Wark

'Today we are facing extreme and most dangerous developments in the
thought of security. In the course of a gradual neutralisation of
politics and the progressive surrender of traditional tasks of the
state, security imposes itself as the basic principle of state activity.
What used to be one among several decisive measures of public
administration until the first half of the twentieth century, now
becomes the sole criterion of political legitimation. The thought of
security entails an essential risk. A state which has security as its
sole task and source of legitimacy is a fragile organism; it can always
be provoked by terrorism to become itself terrorist.'

Following the words of Giorgio Agamben (from his 2001 article 'On
Security and Terror'), security has become the basic principle of
international politics after 9/11, and the 'sole criterion of political
legitimation'. But security – reducing plural, spontaneous and
surprising phenomena to a level of calculability – also seems to operate
against a political legitimacy based on possibilities of dissent, and
stands in clear opposition to artistic creativity. Being uncalculable by
nature, art is often incompatible with the demands of security and
consequently viewed as a 'risk', leading to the arrest of artists, and a
neutralisation of innovative environments for the sake of security.

Yet precisely the position of art outside the calculable seems to bring
about a new politicisation of art, and some speak of art as 'politics by
other means'. Has art become the last remaining enclave of a critique of
violence? Yet how 'risky' can art be?


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