Crisis and Un/Making Sense – Art as Schizoanalysis

Khoj International Artists’ Association
supported by
Goethe Institut / Max Mueller Bhavan


Crisis and Un/Making Sense – Art as Schizoanalysis: A Symposium

10th January – 11th January 2015, 10:00 am to 5:00 pm, Siddhartha Hall, Max Mueller Bhawan, New Delhi

Speakers: Ian Buchanan, Ana Paula Cohen, Navjot Altaf, Amar Kanwar, Sonal Jain, Mrigank Madhukaillya, Leon Tan, Virlani Rupini, Lorna Collins, Sheba Chhachhi, Sonia Jabbar

Schizoanalysis is a concept and practice invented by Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari as a critique of and methodology beyond, psychoanalysis. Deleuze and Guattari argued that traditional psychoanalysis more often served to constrain and limit, rather than to liberate and affirm life. One of the problems with psychoanalysis was its enclosure of the patient and analyst in the coccoon (and model) of the clinic, isolated from the social relations and economic circumstances out of which symptoms emerge. In contrast, schizoanalysis deploys within the wider social sphere, as a practice that is at once critical and clinical. Its critical dimension lies in the identification of life-negating vectors in the social field, while its clinical dimension consists of the ‘mutant centers of subjectivation’ seeded in a community, enabling collective imagination and experimentation with new possibilities of life.

Crisis and Un/Making Sense is a symposium exploring artistic practices that address situations of collective trauma and social rupture. It examines how expression (broadly conceived) and sense-making processes result in social transformation. The idea that art might contribute to the resolution of entrenched social problems is by no means new; yet it is one that is highly unfashionable, with critics such as Claire Bishop mistakenly arguing that socially useful art is necessarily devoid of criticality. In contrast to such tendencies of thought, the proposition here is that, in fact, the social therapeutic dimension of art cannot be separated from the critical dimension. Furthermore, as Buchanan and Collins (2014) put it, “we are all artists, we all have the potential to exercise what might be called an aesthetico-political function and change the world around us.”

Crisis and the Un/Making of Sense – Art as Schizoanalysis
DAY 1: January 10, 2015 Saturday
Siddhartha Hall, Goethe Institute

10.00 am : Tea

10.30 am : Introduction to Schizoanalysis
Keynote by Ian Buchanan

12.00 pm: Aesthetics of Collaboration – Resistance and Collective Creation in India
Panel discussion
Panelist: Navjot Altaf, Amar Kanwar
Moderator: Leon Tan

1.00 pm: Lunch

2.00 pm: Noise and Sense – Scrambled Codes and Breakflows
Panel discussion
Panelists: Sonal Jain, Mriganka Madhukaillya
Discussant: Ian Buchanan

3.30 pm: Tea

4.30 pm: Fissured Land: Kashmir and Beyond
Sonia Jabbar in conversation with Sheba Chhachhi

DAY 2: January 11, 2015, Sunday
Siddhartha Hall, Goethe Institute

10.00 am : Tea

10.30 am: Present Memory of the Body: the corporeal experimentations of Lygia Clark’s ouvre
The Archive of Interviews “Lygia Clark from Object to Event” – developed by psychoanalyst and cultural critic Suely Rolnik
Keynote by Ana Paula Cohen

12.30 pm: Thinking with the Senses: A conversation between artistic practices in Brazil and India
Ana Paula Cohen in conversation with Sheba Chhachhi

1.30 pm: Lunch

2.30 pm: Film-Making as an Expanded Clinic
Panel discussion
Panelists: Virlani Rupini, Leon Tan
Discussant: Lorna Collins

4.00 pm: Tea

4.30 pm: Film Screening (TBC)
The Look of Silence (2014)
Dir: Joshua Oppenheimer
Indonesian/ Javanese, 103 Minutes

To register for the symposium, please write to

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Associated Programmes