A traveling anarchist suitcase

JOURNAL? / A Danish cross-aesthetic journal has now published its new double number 4-5 on almost 500 pages.


The journal Mr. antipyrine went live in 2014. The name has been borrowed from Dadaist Tristan Zara's book La Première adventure céleste de M. Antipyrine from 1916. But the word "magazine" is hardly comprehensive, nor is it a display of Dadaism or a manifesto. More a traveling anarchist suitcase for writing thought and image experiments?

The editorial staff consists of a single permanent employee at the university, the others are homeless writers and artists with a life on the edge of society. It is here from the extreme trenches that one wants to get art and literature and political and social criticism to speak together. For each issue, they compile a series of frequently translated texts supplemented with their own essays, interviews and image collages. But what does Mr. Antipyrine want? The short answer: a thinking that gives access to a new world.

What can change man and the world today? Even they are in doubt.

Art and politics

Can and should one dispel the distinction between art and politics and resume a belief in the art avant-garde project? Is this project not long ago sailing with all its notions of revolutionary upheaval, rejection of the political system, the monetary system, etc.? Or should one rather think of change through the many overlapping orbital and new professional touch zones?

Today's political sphere has been totally aesthetized.

The editorial points to the dilemma of the time between the liberating power of art and the inclusion in circuits where everything is connected where no crises can be separated: «Climate crisis, migration crisis, depression crisis, financial crisis. And language crisis. ”Our problem is that we do not have vocabulary, language and thinking that is at the same time as the crisis of the time. And yet Mr. A insists that art, that is, literature, music, dance, etc., is something else than politics. They quote Boris Groys here: «The art is fundamentally different from politics, since in its basic form it always opposes itself. The policy must be just that reach something, it is progressive and results oriented… »

If art is the site of a new, critical thinking, there must just be no coincidence between art and politics. A total collapse is also a total collapse. Therefore, the problem of art is not its inability to be truly political, as Groys writes; rather the problem is that today's political sphere has been totally aesthetized. The policy is soaked in junk, marketing rhetoric and aestheticized speech called spin. And from the standpoint of art: Visit any party in the urban space where everyone calls themselves creative, whether they have an artistic practice, are communications consultants, marketing writers, social entrepreneurs, and you will immediately realize that art is the place for new experience and critical thinking no longer have any ground.

It is the attempt to regain another place to speak from, outside, so that it again becomes possible to live and think critically and inventively, which is Mr. A's real business.

20 years of shock therapy

"The worldviews are in the language, and the less space this gets, the more our world of life is translated into a commercial language," they write. The recent 20 years of neoliberal shock therapy and language crisis have created an economic worldview. Mr. A calls it a linguistic genius, in one word, "to make a worker an employee." With language, we have created a space we cannot move out of: now all our actions and our entire lives are about what can pay off. The economic language of the last 20-25 years has created an atmospheric pressure, a shock therapy that has dragged us down and down, carried us into our own bubbles and thus unable to respond to crises outside ourselves, climate crisis, migration crisis etc. Atmospheric pressure has drained us from thinking and its connection to materiality and the earth, all that has to do with rhythm, earth, time, art, new technology, craftsmanship, slowness and death.

Jonas Eika
Jonas Eika

Mr. A has put Nick Land and Anna Greenspan to the center of Shanghai to talk about Chinese neo-modernity, that we are entering a new phase where it is about recreating life's senses and complexities from more fluid states. Here, the fluctuating dynamics of time play an important role: the city of the future will form the basis for experiential spaces where the archaeological and geological forms of the past blend with the electronic and architectural. In the cities of the future, the linearly controlled timing and economy will be replaced by time spirals that create new transhuman experiences.

The ethical moment of thinking?

The Danish author Jonas Oak, which received the Nordic Council Literature Prize on 29 October, gave a speech that in several places has been proclaimed to be historic, a call for a new youth uprising. Instead of just being grateful for his award, in his speech he goes on the counterattack on the political establishment, which is sitting in the hall with Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen at the helm. He criticizes Danish refugee policy, and even though he hits next to several places, there is a critique between the lines of the climate of thought that has cemented itself in Denmark, which Antipyrine is also trying to wriggle out of.

But what is this historical moment? Does it exist at all? Is it not the job of art to pave the way for new fluctuating and conflicting experience spaces, spaces that sow divisions, and which serve themselves by unexpected alliances? An art that would just have to speak on behalf of everyone has neither the art nor the society much pleasure! It would be a nice constructive thought that the Nordic Council will be able to celebrate with its award. Perhaps we can see Eika's speech as an expression of what one might call "an ethical moment" that our confused time is first and foremost negative – a sense that the idea has disappeared. The historical moment is not the content of Eika's speech, but rather an affirmation of the low point that there is almost no resistance, a speech that with a small peep breaks with a rooted nihilism that says we can do without ideas, without new thoughts that it is enough to cultivate the present and our consumption and lifestyles. If the speech is historical, it is because it has become clear to us that there is no longer any place outside to speak from.

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