Formless has ratings and 11 reviews. Martin said: Actually, it’s by Bois and Rosalind E. Krauss. Modern art reassessed thru Bataille. The book borrow. The concept of formlessness was re-introduced by the cultural theorists Rosalind Krauss and Yves-Alain Bois in , when they used Bataille’s notion of. Formless: A User’s Guide, [excerpt]. A User’s Guide to Entropy*. ROSALIND KRAUSS. X MARKS THE SPOT. Sometime in Bruce Nauman made a plaster.

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You say tour de force, I say insane, hilarious, seditious. He is similar, not similar to something, but just similar.

Bois and Krauss have chosen to concern themselves with a topic of the greatest interest, importance, relevance and even timeliness: There are some compelling exceptions. Nevertheless, sentiments of futility and meaninglessness do not have to spring from anti-scientific preconceptions such as Keauss.

Apr 28, RJ rated it it was amazing. Sonia rated it it was amazing Oct 21, Beverly rated it really liked it Feb 17, Heterology puts in one more appearance in the formkess chapter, Krauss’ “Conclusion: While not a term widely employed by Bataille, pulse is here used both to “attack the modernist exclusion of temporality from the visual field” [32] and assert the importance, for the informe, of the “repetition compulsion” so fundamentally associated with Freud’s tosalind of the “death drive.

This is why, though we seek to create order, we do not simply condemn disorder. Robert Smithson goes to a great deal of trouble and expense to dump tons of dirt on a hill—the real “work” of the piece is then accomplished, over time, by nature entropy. Daniel rated it it was amazing Apr 15, Art, according to this [mainstream modernist] view, is a sublimatory [thus repressive] activity that separates the perceiver from his or her body Michael Graf rated it it was amazing Sep 07, Another related aspect of the problem can be seen in Freud’s treatment, in Totem and Taboo, of the process he calls “secondary elaboration”: What seems to drive the repetitive pulse of one organ dissolving into the image of another is a sense of the erosion of good form, an experience of pragnanz in the grip of the devolutionary forces of a throb that disrupts the laws of form, that overwhelms them, that scatters them.

Moreover, each main category is also a subcategory, either of itself or another category.


Formless: A User’s Guide

Thus the first subcategory under Horizontality, Gestalt, comes alphabetically just after the last subcategory under Base Materialism, Figure. Rosalknd 22, Barry Pierce rated it liked it Shelves: Indeed, in my view, Derrida’s assessment of Artaud, while undeniably trenchant, is not as devastating as he might have thought.

For Bois, the “mainstream” modernism of traditional art history— essentially, the modernism of Clement Greenberg, “had to justify its existence as the search for its own essence. While it would be naive to assume that either our authors or Bataille himself are unaware of the difficulty, it nevertheless persists, as an ever-recurring question as to exactly what it is that endows the informe with the efficacy claimed for it, the mysterious power to overcome all such oppositions.

Thus, when Bois states that “the formless matter that base materialism claims for itself resembles nothing,” [53] or that “this dualist mode of thought refuses to resolve contradictions. Perhaps they were never even formulated. But when it comes time to put her insight “to use,” she can do no better than produce, as examples, some concept krauss pieces by Mike Kelley— installations which seem to operate mostly, once again, by means of simple assertion and, indeed as does most concept art thematization.

It’s definition is everything thing that it is NOT, to the point that the formless seems to in fact be nothing other than a vague impression of the potentiality for some sort of subversion or declassification Bois and Krauss krakss at pains to distinguish between strategies designed to elevate the debased, abject, formless, by sublimating them into Art, and strategies designed to get viewers “down and dirty,” inviting them to experience “formlessness” krause its own, far more subversive, terms.

Lists with This Book. The odd conjunction of the natural and the passive, embodied in the mirror theme, is exemplified also in the surprising choice of entropy as a major category. Few have investigated so diligently the workings of the strange anti-logic which links the formless to the laws of heterology, scatology, expenditure without reserve and general economics.

In the now-classic foemless of Bataille’s encounter with Hegel titled, “From Restricted to General Economy,” Derrida, after a generally approving summary cormless Bataille’s transgressive strategies, hesitates: If a metaphor always refers to a proper name, restricting in advance the field of its transpositions, scatological deconstruction of this sublimating process is produced by contact with an untransposable unspeakable: Visual shape is a metaphor for conceptual form.


It can be bloody, excremental and disgusting, but not in the manner of artists such as Nitsche or Beuys. Caillosi compares this condition to that reported by schizophrenics who feel themselves dispossessed and even devoured by the space around them. Clearly, the authors have here endeavored to apply the subversive “anti-methodology” of Bataille himself.

Formless: A User’s Guide by Yve-Alain Bois

They chart its persistence within a history of modernism that has always repressed it in the interest of privileging Yve-Alain Bois and Rosalind E. Also include categories that we did not mention so far e. Noah rated it really liked it Sep 15, One can easily find scientific propositions which imply the ultimate uselessness of everything.

Thames and Hudson, B rated it it was amazing Feb 19, It is also much more, both a theoretical-historical monograph and a manifesto. For base materialism, nature produces only unique monsters For Bois, this law is strongly linked with “Bataille’s fascination with rot and waste, with the decomposition of everything.

Formulation of the laws governing such a process of submission will be the task of “heterology,” “the science of what is entirely other.

Opposing the Oppositions of Dialectics To begin with the introduction, I must observe that Bois, in seeking to “declare null and void” the characteristically modernist opposition, form vs. Brown’s Life Against Death, the collected writings of John Cage and beyond, to take its place as a major theme of postmodernism.

What is at stake is the very possibility of a nondialectical materialism: We recognise that it is destructive to existing patterns; also orsalind it fogmless potentiality.

If the authors worked on this some fifteen years, they must have had a lot of fun. And this is certainly one of the keys to the interest our authors take in Bataille. In her “Horizontality” essay, Krauss discusses some examples of the sort of art which promotes the informe by getting, and staying, low. Entropy, Expenditure and the Subject On Trial The odd conjunction of formlesw natural and fornless passive, embodied in the mirror theme, is exemplified also in the surprising choice of entropy as a major category.