L'échec des Rencontres de Robion (1981/82) : Un tournant pour Vilém Flusser? / The Failure of the 1981/82 Robion Encounters: A Turning Point for Vilém Flusser?
Settling in Robion in 1981, Flusser attempted to organize a summer event there, as a sort of laboratory of ideas related to the São Paulo Biennale. There was only one event, in August 1981, on the subject of analogies to language. This failure can be seen as a turning point for Flusser as far as his relationship with Brazil and with France were concerned: after 1982, the center of gravity of his intellectual and editorial life moved to Germany.
To Save Philosophy in a Universe of Technical Images
Philosophy, origin and apotheosis of the Humanist project, seems to have been surpassed in a world of extreme and ubiquitous automated processes. Automation threatens to truly “taken control”, and subordinate all human activity to the functions inscribed in the machine. The kaleidoscopticon of contemporary culture seems to indicate a return to pre-literate “magical thinking” but it is in fact a product of highly literate scientific, technical literacy. Flusser urges us to encounter the persistent importance of causal, textual thinking at work inside every apparatus to help steer the transformations, which are taking place in ourselves and in our world. Flusser makes this plea alongside a contention that linear, causal, conventional textual practices are no longer adequate to convey our ideas and experience highly in-formed by the new technologies. He exhorts us to use “technical images”. It becomes evident that Flusser’s project is to save philosophy, or restate the importance of philosophical practices, in an age where literacy has gone sub rosa. Using examples from Flusser’s experimental collaborations with artists Louis Bec and Fred Forest, this short essay will attempt to elaborate what Flusser means with philosophical practice, which uses technical images.
From Abstraction to Concretion: A Brief Overview of the Exhibition Project “BODENLOS_Vilém Flusser and the Arts”
We have attempted a mise-en-scène of Flusser’s thinking in museum settings, applying the techniques of exhibition-making to produce a space to encounter Flusser anew in all his multifarious and passionate contradictions. Flusser emerges here as an irrepressible social actor with proto-curatorial, perhaps even meta-artistic agendas.