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World of Art

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SCCA, Center for Contemporary Arts - Ljubljana
Metelkova 6, SI - 1000 Ljubljana
Tel.: +386 (0)1 431 83 85
Fax: +386 (0)1 430 06 29
e-mail: info[at]scca-ljubljana.si



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(European tool for artists)
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(the association of non-government organisations and independent creators in the field of culture and art)
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World of ArtWorld of Art
Laboratorium of curatorial practices 2008/2009

Angela Harutyunyan
Techniques of Viewing: Representation and
Interpretation of Video Art

2 Sessions
Preperation of a Compilation with Ida Hiršenfelder
A Follow-up Meeting and Discussion

November 14-16, 2008
Project Room SCCA, Metelkova 6, Ljubljana
Application deadline: November 12, 2008

Many theorists and cultural historians have persistently defined the global culture of late consumer capitalism in terms of the domination of the visual. What does it mean to function as a subject within the paradigm of the visual? How is vision constructed historically? What kind of power structures does it create/reproduce? What modes of representation does it imply? What is the phenomenon of video art? What are some of the strategies of its interpretation, representation, reproduction and dissemination? How does video art, as an aesthetic phenomenon, relate to the "age of the spectacle"? What is the role of the spectator/viewer/observer in the construction of the visual? What is the role of the curator in the construction of some of the semantic layers of video art? What function does video play in the process of documentation of performance art practices? How do the technologies construct own perceptions of our own bodies?

The two sessions in English and conducted with SCCA-Ljubljana's Laboratorium will try to address and discuss some of these questions.


Friday, November 14, 10:00-17:00

The first part of the workshop includes a lecture on techniques and technologies of observation, and the ways in which video art came into being as a historically specific phenomenon, tied to larger political, social, cultural and ideological discourses. Some key terms and concepts useful for the interpretation of video art will be defined, discussed and elaborated upon.

We will discuss a key text (which the participants are required to read beforehand), and address some of the ways in which technologies construct the viewers' subjectivity but also the ways in which the viewers/users shape technologies through dominant cultural and historical constructions of visual perception.

11:00-11:15 Break

11:15-13:00 Seminar-discussion
Participants should read:

  • Jonathan Crary: "Modernity and the Problem of the Observer" in Techniques of the Observer: On Vision and Modernity in the 19th Century, pp. 1-25, MIT Press, 1990.

Subsequently we will discuss some articulations of the body as a site for contestation of identity through technologies, especially, video. We will talk about the concept of the technophenomenological body.


  • Amelia Jones, "Postmodernism, Subjectivity, and Body Art: A Trajectory" in Body Art: Performing the Subject, Minneapolis, London: University of Minnesota Press, 1998.

13:00-14:00 Lunch Break

14:00-15:15 Exercise 1
A small selection of video art pieces from various contexts, including Slovenia and Armenia, will be shown (approx. 45 min). The participants will be asked to write up an interpretation of the shown pieces, imagining them displayed in a single exhibition. After this initial stage, we will write up a concept of an imaginary exhibition of the works shown earlier.

15:15-15:30 Break

Subsequently, we will address some contemporary artistic and curatorial practices in which the strategies of displaying video works are made transparent.

The participants are asked to read:

  • Katarina Amman, "Dan Graham's Designs for Video Presentations: Art, Commentary and Solution" in Present Continuous Pasts: Media Art, Strategies of Presentation, Meditation and Dissemination, Springer, Wien-New York, 2005, pp.112-122d
  • Igor Španjol, "Manifesta in the Living Room"

Exercise 2
We will examine the exhibition Video/cultures: multimedia installations in 1990s, curated by Ursula Frohne at ZKM in Karlsruhe, Germany in 1999, as a case study. We will particularly solicit the problems addressed in the exhibition, the thematic foci, strategies of representation and the organization of the catalogue.


Saturday and Sunday, November 15 and 16, 10:00-13:00 (17:00)

Production of a video compilation
Making use of some of the tools we gained during the workshop, we will discuss a production of a possible compilation for Video pool archive - an online archive of curated video art within Anthony Auerbach's project Video as Urban Condition. It is expected that a collaborative entry will be submitted as a follow-up practical result of the workshop. This session will be conducted in collaboration with Ida Hiršenfelder, SCCA collaborator at DIVA archive. For the compilation, we will consider works included in the DIVA video archive.

According to the convenience of the participants, they will continue the workshop with Ida Hiršenfelder on the selection of a compilation from DIVA project's archive. The meeting can be schedule either from 13:00-17:00 on Saturday or Sunday.


A FOLLOW UP MEETING - Monday, November 17
A follow up meeting between Angela Harutyunyan and the workshop participants.


Angela HarutyunyanAngela Harutyunyan is a PhD candidate in Art History and Visual Studies at the University of Manchester. She is currently writing a dissertation on contemporary Armenian art and the post-Socialist public sphere under Dr. Amelia Jone's supervision. She is a member of AICA and the co-organizer of the annual international summer seminars' program for contemporary art curators. She curated several solo and group exhibitions of contemporary Armenian art, including the International media art festival Public Media Space at the Armenian Center for Contemporary Experimental Art (ACCEA) in Yerevan, 2004 and Coming to You Not To Be With You, WOW, 2008. She has published several scholarly articles on various topics related to the contemporary art scene in Armenia within the broader context of post-socialist art and culture. She is the co-editor of Public Spheres After Socialism (Intellect Books, 2008). Her research interests include issues of art historiography, performance and body art, artistic practices related to the problems of memory and forgetting, queer studies as well as aesthetic and politics.


Participation fee is 20 EUR for individuals and 30 EUR for institution representatives. The number of participants is limited.

Application deadline: Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Please, send your CV and a short letter or intent together with the application form to: svetumetnosti@scca-ljubljana.si or send/bring it personally to: Zavod SCCA-Ljubljana, Metelkova 6, 1000 Ljubljana, working hours: 11.00-15.00.

The participants are welcome to visit SCCA video archive/DIVA for viewing video works and any additional information.


SCCA-Ljubljana (office hours: 11.00-15.00)
Contact person: Petja Grafenauer Krnc
Metelkova 6, 1000 Ljubljana, tel.: 041 367 425, fax: (01) 430 06 29
E-mail: svetumetnosti@scca-ljubljana.si

The workshop of Angela Haratyunyan is supported by Gulliver Connect Programme 2008.

The World of Art is supported by Municipality of Ljubljana - Department for Culture, Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Slovenia, and European Cultural Foundation.



In Focus

At some point,
in some place

(video screening from
DIVA Station archive)

Short Film Night:
21 Dec. 2017, 10.30pm

Slovenian Cinematheque
Free entrance!


Contemporary art
and art theory

Focus: curatorial practices and media & video art

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Zavod SCCA-Ljubljana
, Metelkova 6, SI - 1000 Ljubljana,
Tel.: +386 (0)1 431 83 85, Fax: +386 (0)1 430 06 29 e-mail: info@scca-ljubljana.si