Join us on Tuesday, August 3, 2021 at 1 p.m. EST for an online chat with bh Yael, Cooper Battersby, and Emily vey duke, moderated by Irmgard Emmelhainz.
No biological organism can live on its own, yet our relationships with others and with the environment are determined by the modern fantasy of the independent individual fighting for himself in a Darwinist quest for success and survival. These relationships also shape how we support each other, how we survive in the world, and how we see ourselves as individual subjects. Under global capitalism, the qualities and intensities of interpersonal and environmental relationships also pass through the market and are characterized by extreme alienation and dissociation. The works in this program deal with the hopes and dysfunctions of contemporary subjectivity and interrelational arrangements as determined by modernity and capitalism. Today, the market has erased the boundaries between biological and political life, perpetuating the colonial hierarchy of a racialized social and political life that makes certain bodies vulnerable and subject to the technologies of oppression and dispossession, while protecting them from other. As precariousness is exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, discussions of decolonial internationality, reciprocity and mutual aid emerge in an effort to finally transcend the white savior complex behind human rights rhetoric. and the welfare state. In our hyper-individualized imaginations, we have implemented empathy as a structural emotion to relate to others, but we are either unresponsive to their pain or embedded in toxic forms of empathic codependency. One can only hope for impossible attachments and autonomous forms of mutual aid.
The discussion accompanies the films of “Interrelational Arrangements (Interdependency and Survival)”, the third program in the Me, You, and Everyone We Know: Interrelationality, Alterity, Globalization series, curated by Irmgard Emmelhainz for e-flux Video & Film.
Watch the films here and learn more about the series here.
bh Yael is a Toronto-based filmmaker and installation artist. Yael’s work has been exhibited nationally and internationally and presented in a variety of settings, from festivals to galleries, community groups and activists, as well as various educational venues, and has been purchased by many universities. Yael’s films and installations have dealt with the many intersections of identity and family; he focused on militant initiatives in Palestine / Israel, as well as the apocalypse and geopolitical and environmental emergencies. She is Professor of Integrated Media at OCAD University and, in 2021, Visiting Fellow at Massey College, University of Toronto.
Emily vey duke and Cooper Battersby have been collaborating since 1994 in the fields of print, installation, new media, conservation and sound, their main practice being single-channel video. Their work has been exhibited internationally, including at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis and the Renaissance Society in Chicago, and nationally at the Vancouver Art Gallery. In Toronto, their work is represented by Jessica Bradley Art + Projects.
Irmgard Emmelhainz is a Mexico City-based freelance translator, writer, researcher and speaker. His book The political cinema of Jean-Luc Godard was published by Palgrave MacMillan in 2019. The extended translated version of The Tyranny of Common Sense: Mexico’s Neoliberal Conversion coming out this fall with SUNY Press, just like Toxic loves, impossible futures: feminists live in resistance (Vanderbilt). She is a member of the SNCA in Mexico (National System of Art Creators).
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