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Neither 'Art' Nor 'Psychogeography': The Impossibility of The Chapeltown Union of Psychogeographers


I will discuss the 'schism' of art and politics, commenting on how we might understand relationships between 'forms of visibility' and 'forms of capital.'

Here Roddy explains his work and introduces his talk:
Both 'art' and 'psychogeography' are problematic enough in themselves. 'Art as psychogeography' and 'psychogeography as art' possibly represent even worse prospects. The central problem here can be traced to the 'schism [in the Situationist International] of 1962, between what has been described as the artistic faction and the political faction.' (Ford, 1995). Like many artists interested in radical traditions of architecture and politics, I discovered the work of the SI and notions of 'psychogeography' early in my practice. I have subsequently addressed these issues in projects such as 'Civil Twilight' (Hunter, 2007). I have recently founded a new project entitled the 'Chapeltown Union of Psychogeographers' (C.U.P). Working with others - mainly undergraduate Fine Arts students from York St John University - C.U.P explores how the geographical environment of the Chapetlown area of Leeds influences its residents and visitors. In this presentation, I will discuss the 'schism' of art and politics, commenting on how we might understand relationships between 'forms of visibility' and 'forms of capital.' I will also provide a brief survey of artists' work engaging with psychogeography, including previous practice of my own in this respect. The main function of the presentation will be to introduce and discuss the current C.U.P project, probably coming to the conclusion that neither 'art' nor 'psychogeography' are particularly useful terms in practice and probably ought to be circumvented in future. To this end I would add 'the realization and suppression of psychogeography' to Raoul Vaneigm's call for the realization and suppression of art.' (Vaneigm, 1967).

Venue: Baines Wing Miall Lecture Theatre 2.34, University of Leeds
Campus map of buildings: click on this link, then launch the interactive campus map, and choose Baines Wing from the list on the right.
From the main entrance, go straight on past the front desk, then through the doors on the left. Follow the corridor round to the right and then to the left. At the end of the corridor on your right take the lift to the second floor (West) or go up 5 short flights of stairs. The Miall Lecture Theatre (2.34) is straight opposite the lift. Please note: all talks this semester will now be in this room.


Roddy Hunter | talks


Date and Time:

22 March 2011 at 5:00 pm


1 hour



University of Leeds

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