Dicussions on on political and philosophical dimensions of contemporary art.

. Lecture | Tuesday 21.02.2017, from 17.00-20.00 @ Kamari, Tehtaankatu 21.

· Book launch and discussion | Wednesday 22.02.2017, from 18.00-20.00 @
MAA-tila, Pääskylänrinne 10.

Rab-Rab: journal for political and formal inquiries in art in
collaboration with Night Schoolers are delighted to host two presentations
by Michael Corris and the launch of his new book Leaving Skull City:
Selected Writings on Art (les presses du réel, 2016). The events will take
place in Helsinki on February 21st and 22nd, 2017.

Micheal Corris’ practice and collaborations with diverse platforms such as
the Art & Language collective, The Fox and Red-Herring provide an insight
into the political aspects of Conceptual Art. The aim of these discussions
is also to deepen our understanding concerning pressing issues such as
organising art workers’ struggles, the unionization of creative labour,
development of critiques of institutional thinking, the changing status of
the new forms of art labour, the dialectics of art collectives and the
never-ending questioning of the implications distinctive to the economy of

The first presentation on Tuesday, February 21, will focus on questions of
collectivity, labour, and struggles in the field of art and will be
moderated by Night Schoolers. Michael Corris was involved during the 1970s
in collective art platforms such as Artists Meeting for Cultural Change
(AMCC) and Anti-Imperialist Culture Union (AICU), which questioned the
organisational status of art workers, the contradictions of collectives,
and the restrictive structures of artistic institutions. Focusing on these
two art platforms, as well as on the earlier mobilisation of artistic
struggles within the organisation of Artists Workers Coalition (AWC),
Corris will give a critical presentation on these histories and invite us
to reconsider the relevance of these historical lessons to current
conditions. The presentation will take place at Kamari, Tehtaankatu 21.

The discussion taking place the following day, Wednesday, February 22,
will centre on Corris’ new book Leaving Skull City: Selected Writings on
Art (les presses du réel, 2016) and will be hosted by Rab-Rab. The book
brings together a selection of his insightful writings on political and
philosophical dimensions of contemporary art. The discussion will
illuminate the political aspects of Conceptual Art by focusing on the
theoretical and publishing activity of Art & Language collective. The
launch of Corris’ latest book—Leaving Skull City—will give us the
opportunity to discuss a diverse range of topics covered by this
publication. Ranging from Ad Reinhardt to the question of collaborations
Conceptual Art; ideological struggles within Art & Language collective; to
a satirical view of management in art education; these writings will
provide a basis for a collective discussion of theoretical and practical
issues of political art from the point of view of a participant-observer.

The book launch and discussion will take place on Wednesday, February 22
from 6 pm onwards at MAA-tila located in Pääskylänrinne 10.
Leaving Skull City will be available for sale during the presentation.


Michael Corris is an artist who lives and works in Dallas, TX. During the
1970s, Corris worked with the conceptual art collective Art & Language
(1972-1976), and was a founding editor of The Fox (1975-76) and
(1977-1979). Corris has exhibited extensively in North America and Europe;
his artwork and artist bookworks are held in public collections including
the Museum of Modern Art (New York), the Whitney Museum of American Art
(New York), The Getty Research Institute (Los Angeles), Le Consortium
(Dijon), Victoria and Albert Museum (London), Tate Modern (London).
Corris has published widely on contemporary art in journals and magazines
such as Art Monthly, Artforum, Art in America, Art History, and art+text.
Recent monographs and chapters in edited publications include Conceptual
Art: Theory, Myth and Practice (Cambridge University Press, 2004), Ad
Reinhardt (Reaktion Books, London, 2008), Art, Word & Image: 2,000 Years
Textual/Visual Interaction (Reaktion Books, London, 2010) (with John Dixon
Hunt and David Lomas) and “What’s Wrong With This Picture? David Diao
Visualizes Data”, in Philip Tinari, ed., David Diao: Works 1969-2015
(Ullens Center for Contemporary Art, 2016). Corris is Professor of Art at
the Meadows School for the Arts, SMU, Dallas, TX, USA.