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CONSUMPTION, CONSUMERISM AND COMMODITIES: how desire drives collective identity
April 9th
Apex Art Curatorial Program
291 Church Street (between Walker and White)

With Mark Van Hollebeke, Panayiotis Michael, and Katya Sander

Danish artist Katya Sander, currently living in Copenhagen, addresses consumer culture in her work mainly through the spacial staging of subjects as consumers. She has worked with this from many angles, mainly through the idea of the "society of spectacle" combined with a Lacanian take on language (also understood as spacial order) as structuring desire through the way bodies, gaze and power is distributed. One area of interest for her has been questionnaires and models of analyses used by opinion-research institutes for the advertizing industry to categorize consumers within segments. She will discuss her projects that deal with the way capitalism seems to structure desire and how it is structured in space.

Panayiotis Michael is an artist from Cyprus now living in New York. He will discuss is current project "Flag Industry-SALE".

"The efforts toward a united Europe in a united world, conflict with the tendency for its fragmentation and division and the attitude of absolute individualism. The 'mass production' of new countries and the demands of many communities to be separated from countries to which they belong, give rise to many questions in a period when it is claimed that the dreams of Europe as a united country and the globalization take shape. 'Taking advantage' of the situation in Europe, I have opened a 'store' selling flags, for each individual group of people wishing to create a new State. The store is composed of five series."

Mark Van Hollebeke is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Philosophy at Fordham University. He has taught at Hunter College, Fordham and PSPS. His dissertation analyzes human subjectivity and agency via process ontology and a transactional theory of experience. Fordham recently awarded him a senior fellowship for 2001-2002. He will present a brief synopsis of his current work analyzing New York City's consumerist wish imagery. The focus will be on the philosophical methods and insights that Walter Benjamin introduces in his "Passagen-Werk" and Van Hollebeke's suggestions and how these might be pragmatically applied. See

http://trill.cis.fordham.edu/~gsas/philosophy/vanhollebeke.htm

for a shortened version of the essay.