Eric Golo Stone

The Political Economy of Art Institutions: Almost Everything still Remains to be Done   

19 March 2021

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Plutocratic governance and wealth management increasingly define the operational structures of art institutions. Artworld sites of production, distribution, education, and reception are entirely synonymous with socioeconomic inequality. Artists are a frequently cited example of how laborers are exploited, dispossessed, and deprived when working in a hyper-atomized industry dominated by asymmetrical property laws, discriminatory hiring practices, freelance contracts, non-disclosure agreements, and verbal offers.How do we intervene in the consequential legal-economic structures that govern immediate lived relations and working conditions in the field of art? How do we reconcile the unbearable disconnect between the declarative politics that works of art invoke, and the actual political realities that produce and distribute works of art?

In his presentation, Eric Golo Stone will address these questions and discuss to what extent curatorial activity can initiate critically reflexive approaches to confronting the current socioeconomic realities facing artists and their institutions.

Eric Golo Stone is a writer, curator, and artist whose varied practices consistently examine the political economy of art. His work analyzes and enacts the socioeconomic structures and governance arrangements by which art institutions operate. Since January 2020 he is the artistic director of the Künstlerhaus Stuttgart. His writing has been published in AfterallOctober, and Texte zur Kunst, among other publications.