Bojana Matejić
University of Arts in Belgrade


Art becoming life and its relative convergence to the ideality of autarky (αὐτάρκεια), implies a maxim which coincides with the emancipatory promise of Art. Neo-Marxist authors have prescribed this maxim to Marx’s early works, particularly to the thesis from his Economic and Philosophic Manuscripts of 1844, and elaborated it further on these grounds. This maxim has been applied by many avant-garde movements up to the contemporary moment: Bertold Brecht’s political theatre, Guy Debord’s situationism, site-specific art, fluxus, Joseph Beuys’s social sculpture, etc. The common denominator of all these avant-garde practices is the imperative of an affirmation of their use-value – their realisation at the site of their own production, as opposed to the abstractness of their placement in the world.The site of this production is the site of the very production of sociability. Accordingly, the aim of this paper is to examine the maxim art becoming life in the wake of Badiou’s ontology of the site by using the example of the modality of site-specific works in the conditions of contemporaneity.

art, generic life, emancipation, site-specific, Karl Marx, Alain Badiou



SAJ Vol. 7, 2015, No. 2