23 Pages

Introduction: Art, politics and infinite critique

We ask the social to explain the origin of things. What splendid ignorance. The origin and ultimate destiny of things is archaic and therefore beyond the scope of the social contract. The latter is based on the fortuitous convergence between technology and matter, a destructive event that ultimately produces us, but we have inverted this contingent relation, construed it as necessary and situated the cause of its necessity in human spirit. Such a conviction has turned into envy, the shortsighted notion that nothing is more worthy than to rid ourselves of the obstacles standing in the way of our future transcendence. Man’s greatest right has thus become the new figure of sovereignty, an empire that requires a definition of what is to be conquered ‘in the perspective of the legitimacy of this conquest’ (Stengers, 2007: 9).