Dark Matter: Art and Politics in the Age of Enterprise Culture

Book Celebration Thu 10 Feb 2011 5.30PM-7.30PM Sheila C. Johnson Design Center
Kellen Auditorium
Parsons The New School for Design
66 Fifth Avenue at 13th Street, Ground Floor
Free admission
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The Vera List Center for Art and Politics and the Sheila C. Johnson Center for Design at Parsons celebrate the 99th Annual Conference of the College Art Association with a reception and workshop featuring the artistic entrepreneurs of tomorrow.

Dark Matter: Art and Politics in the Age of Enterprise Culture is both a book launch for Gregory Sholette's new work of the same title, and a concrete application of the principles laid out in the book. The book argues that imagination and creativity in the art world originate and thrive in the non-commercial sector. It examines the political economy of art and business by highlighting interventionist and collective art as the 'dark matter' of the art world. This dark matter is indispensable to the survival of mainstream culture which it frequently opposes.

Two projects are lifted from the book's pages and installed in the Sheila C. Johnson Design Center lobby for passers-by to participate.

Boston-based artist Cat Mazza offers a craftivism workshop, based on the work of her organization MicroRevolt. MicroRevolt's projects investigate the dawn of sweatshops in early industrial capitalism to inform the current crisis of global expansion and the feminization of labor.

New York-based artist Jim Costanzo calls for the 2nd Whiskey Rebellion: A Distillation of American Spirit. The original Whiskey Rebellion was a tax protest in Pennsylvania in the 1790s, during the presidency of George Washington. The conflict was rooted in western dissatisfaction with a 1791 excise tax on whiskey. The tax was a part of treasury secretary Alexander Hamilton's program to centralize and fund the national debt. Costanzo is acting on behalf of the Aaron Burr Society which has begun to distill whiskey without a license, in an act of flagrant civil disobedience.

Jim Costanzo, artist, member of Aaron Burr Society
Cat Mazza, artist, founder of MicroRevolt
Gregory Sholette, artist, activist, and author, Dark Matter: Art and Politics in the Age of Enterprise Culture

Accompanied by whiskey and other refreshments.