in theory | #9 Rizvana Bradley

Thursday, 30 May 2024, 7.30 pm, diffrakt | centre for theoretical periphery

Conversation with
Rizvana Bradley | Henrike Kohpeiß | Anthony Obst

Rizvana Bradley’s theoretical work unsettles the conceptual foundations of art and its critique. In Anteaesthetics, she interrogates the aesthetic as a representational regime inextricably entwined with modernity’s (meta)physical antiblack violence. As the modern world is built on the expropriative displacement of blackness, Bradley argues that the aesthetic realm reflects and reproduces this displacement: every nominal appearance of blackness in the world is subject to its antiblack metaphysics. Simultaneously barred from and constitutive of ontological being and phenomenological experience under modernity’s representational regime, blackness comes to bear an aesthesis that Anteaesthetics proposes is “before” the world in a dual sense: at once prior to and subject to the racial regime of aesthetics.

In conversation with Rizvana Bradley, Henrike Kohpeiß and Anthony Obst will explore what her interventions do to the very idea of aesthetics. How does Anteaesthetics enable materialist reflections on artistic practices by grappling with the conditions of antiblackness? How does Bradley’s thought challenge us to see aesthetic categories not as given but as produced? And what do these reflections entail for how we talk about – scholarly and colloquially – the production and the reception of art?