Relational Aesthetics and its Discontents: The Beer Snake as Paradigm (2011)

MAWA, Winnipeg


At the local feminist art centre, this invited performance talk and undone artist book considered the beer snake — a collaborative cultural form popular among some sections at sports events although banned at the time by the City of Winnipeg — as contemporary art to address some relations between relational aesthetics and relational life in a context of liberal and cisheteropatriarchal metanarratives (such as psychoanalysis, individual authorship, managerial participation, and Western democracy as Sovereignty). Acknowledging the work of Achille Mbembe, Claire Bishop, Robert Houle, Jeanne Randolph, and several Winnipeg-based artists, the performance talk was an iteration of a materialist feminist, queer philosophy addressing some biases in the philosophies of Giorgio Agamben, Georges Bataille, Jacques Rancière, Slavoj Žižek, and Nicholas Bourriaud. We did not participate.