New Book: Michael Leruth, French and Francophone Studies

leruth_mIn this video, Prof. Michael Leruth talks to us about his latest book Fred Forest’s Utopia: Media Art and Activism published, this year by MIT Press.

As mentioned on the MIT Press webpage, Prof. Leruth “shows that Forest chooses alternative platforms (newspapers, mock commercial ventures, video-based interactive social interventions, media hacks and hybrids, and, more recently, the Internet) that are outside the exclusive precincts of the art world. A fierce critic of the French contemporary art establishment, Forest famously sued the Centre Pompidou in 1994 over its opaque acquisition practices. After making foundational contributions to Sociological Art in the 1970s and the Aesthetics of Communication in the 1980s, the pioneering Forest saw the Internet as another way for artists to bypass the art establishment in the 1990s. Arguing that there is a strong utopian quality in Forest’s work, Leruth sees this utopianism not as naive or conventional but as a reverse utopianism: rather than envisioning an impossible ideal, Forest re-envisions and probes the quasi-utopia of our media-augmented everyday reality. The interface is the symbolic threshold to be crossed with an open mind.” https://mitpress.mit.edu/books/fred-forests-utopia

In this video, Prof. Michael Leruth talks to us about his latest book Fred Forest’s Utopia: Media Art and Activism published, this year by MIT Press.

As mentioned on the MIT Press webpage, Prof. Leruth “shows that Forest chooses alternative platforms (newspapers, mock commercial ventures, video-based interactive social interventions, media hacks and hybrids, and, more recently, the Internet) that are outside the exclusive precincts of the art world. A fierce critic of the French contemporary art establishment, Forest famously sued the Centre Pompidou in 1994 over its opaque acquisition practices. After making foundational contributions to Sociological Art in the 1970s and the Aesthetics of Communication in the 1980s, the pioneering Forest saw the Internet as another way for artists to bypass the art establishment in the 1990s. Arguing that there is a strong utopian quality in Forest’s work, Leruth sees this utopianism not as naive or conventional but as a reverse utopianism: rather than envisioning an impossible ideal, Forest re-envisions and probes the quasi-utopia of our media-augmented everyday reality. The interface is the symbolic threshold to be crossed with an open mind.” https://mitpress.mit.edu/books/fred-forests-utopia

 

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