Unreal Nature

October 24, 2014

Co-Workers

Filed under: Uncategorized — unrealnature @ 5:36 am

… There were other cooperating forces. … They also have a role, don’t they?

This is from What is Art? Conversations with Joseph Beuys edited with essays by Volker Harlan (2004):

… Yet, even then, it wouldn’t have been so — that all things are made by human beings — because human beings didn’t make themselves. Although I cannot judge at the moment to what extent the human being, through self-willed intention, was involved in the making of himself at the beginning, I’m convinced that there was also a degree of initiative in the human being, and that he somehow announced himself by saying: it’s high time I was made [laughs].

… There are competent collaborators in the world that, under certain circumstances, can accomplish far more than we can. Yes, I say under certain circumstances; this has to be checked out, but for now it’s not really important. I’m just establishing a certain position: that some things are not made by human beings. The human being may well be involved in the sense that this discussion participant suggested; certainly, he’s completely involved in this problem, that’s doubtless true, but he didn’t make it. There were other cooperating forces. And I don’t think it does any harm at all if, to begin with, one actually personifies this. I wouldn’t want to narrow it down too much. For now, one can just speak of co-workers, and get quite a long way with that concept. So one is saying: look, you surely can’t believe that all this is the work of human beings, there are also other co-workers. They also have a role, don’t they?

-Julie

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