29 mars 2008

Four Theses on Contemporary Art

12. Non-imperial art must be as rigorous as a mathematical demonstration, as surprising as an ambush in the night, and as elevated as a star.

13. Today art can only be made from the starting point of that which, as far as Empire is concerned, doesn't exist. Through its abstraction, art renders this inexistence visible. This is what governs the formal principle of every art : the effort to render visible to everyone that which for Empire (and so by extension for everyone, though from a different point of view), doesn't exist.

14. Since it is sure of its ability to control the entire domain of the visible and the audible via the laws governing commercial circulation and democratic communication, Empire no longer censures anything. All art, and all thought, is ruined when we accept this permission to consume, to communicate and to enjoy. We should become the pitiless censors of ourselves.

15. It is better to do nothing than to contribute to the invention of formal ways of rendering visible that which Empire already recognizes as existent.

- from Alain Badiou's Fifteen Theses on Contemporary Art. Longer excerpt here

25 mars 2008

fixed firmly on the object in view

"We must try to keep the mind in tranquility. For just as the eye which constantly shifts its gaze, now turning to the right or to the left, now incessantly peering up or down, cannot see distinctly what lies before it, but the sight must be fixed firmly on the object in view if one would make his vision of it clear; so too man's mind when distracted by his countless worldly cares cannot focus itself distinctly on the truth."
- Basil of Caesarea

cross-posted to Unspoken Cinema

23 mars 2008

Nights and Weekends (trailers)

Joe Swanberg and Greta Gerwig's new film.

"co-written, co-directed and co-stars Greta Gerwig, [...] and it was shot by Matthias Grunsky, the man behind the camera on both of Andrew Bujalski’s features." - Spout, where you can also find a brief Q+A with Greta

These are beautiful:

22 mars 2008

escaping our proud and lonely immensity

"The magic of the microscope is not that it makes little creatures larger, but that it makes a large one smaller. We are too big for our world. The microscope takes us down from our proud and lonely immensity and makes us, for a time, fellow citizens with the great majority of living things. It lets us share with them the strange and beautiful world where a meter amounts to a mile and yesterday was years ago." - Mites of Moths and Butterflies (via)

17 mars 2008

ambition and the young actor

“I don’t know how long I’ll live,” he said when asked what his own future may hold. “But I’d like to make communist films with Ken Loach, libertine films with Almodóvar, esoteric films with Kaurismaki. That’s not bad for a start.”

- Louis Garrel (via)