A Never-Ending Thirst: Artistic Reforms to Neoliberal-Teflon Imperviousness
This text is the dissertation element of my artistic research project, A Never-Ending Thirst: Artistic Reforms to Neoliberal-Teflon Imperviousness, developed within the doctoral studies program at HDK-Valand—the Academy of Art and Design, University of Gothenburg (2016-2021). Along with documentation of twelve artistic projects that support my practice-based inquiry, this text is submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirement for the Degree of Doctor in the Fine, Applied, and Performing Arts. A Never-Ending Thirst asks how my practice of picture-making and artistic ways of knowing can reform what I call “Neoliberal-Teflon Imperviousness.” The aim of this inquiry is to make suggestions and experiment with the role of artistic research in the recuperation of permeability, imagination, and affectability. The research focuses on the production and capture of subjectivity in postindustrial late capitalism and draws on the construct “Skin-Teflon,” which was introduced by Maria Franco Ferraz in “The Paradoxical Status of Skin and Contemporary Culture: From the Porosity of the Skin to the Teflon-Skin” (2014) to describe the intentional demotion of the quality and complexity of acts of interfacing in contemporary culture. My research observes how artistic research might align with questions to counter, and offer alternatives to, Neoliberal-Teflon impediments to affectability—to alterity, encounter, and knowledge—and its denial of the subject as a nexus of relationality. Turning to art and following the problematization of the engagement of art as politically committed offered by Marina Garcés in “Honesty with the Real” (2012) this research proposes a listening ethics—an encounter with distance that is not founded in separateness but inscription and embodiment—as a guideline for (my) artistic research, with its ways of knowing and ways of intervening in the landscape of Neoliberal-Teflon imperviousness. I ask how (my) artistic ways of doing and knowing can operate as listening reflections and instigate affection in the face of today’s increasingly bunkered and disaffected Neoliberal-Teflon sense of the world. At stake in this thesis is my belief that a truly libertarian society cultivates the lessons of affectability, affection, and imagination, without which there is no learning, transformation, or change.
Doctor of Philosophy (in Fine Arts)
Göteborgs universitet. Konstnärliga fakulteten
University of Gothenburg. Faculty of Fine, Applied and Performing Arts
HDKValand - Academy of Art and Design ; HDK-Valand - Högskolan för konst och design
Onsdagen den 1 december 2021, 13.00, HDK-Valand - Högskolan för konst och design, Vasagatan 50, Göteborg
Date of defence
The public defence will be performed via Zoom.