Intensities and Lines of Flight: Deleuze/Guattari and the Arts
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The writings of Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari offer the most enduring and controversial contributions to the theory and practice of art in post-war Continental thought. However, these writings are both so wide-ranging and so challenging that much of the synoptic work on Deleuzo-Guattarian aesthetics has taken the form of sympathetic exegesis, rather than critical appraisal.
This rich and original collection of essays, authored by both major Deleuzian scholars and practicing artists and curators, offers an important critique of Deleuze and Guattari's legacy in relation to a multitude of art forms, including painting, cinema, television, music, architecture, literature, drawing, and installation art. Inspired by the implications of Deleuze and Guattari's work on difference and multiplicity and with a focus on the intersection of theory and practice, the book represents a major interdisciplinary contribution to Deleuze-Guattarian aesthetics.
Expressive refrains point towards the self-consistent autonomy of affect, but ultimately fail to break free of both their internal origin and external reception; their consistency is not self-defined, but is determined by the degree to which they ward off external influence and satisfy inner lacks (i.e., by the degree to which they successfully represent the interests of subjects to their relevant audiences). As Deleuze puts it, “Animal and child refrains seem to be territorial: therefore they
embedded in the playtext, hints of the postidentitarian are in evidence when he asserts, “We protested against the old manner of acting, against theatricality, against false pathos, declamation, against overacting, against the bad convention of production and design, against the star system that spoils the ensemble, against the Deleuze and Guattari, Architecturality and Performance 73 whole construct of the spectacle and against the unsubstantial repertoire of past theatres” 4. The
58). All sensation is immobilized in the Figure, so in viewing these paintings, there is nothing for the observer to feel, nothing at all; it is all thought, purely the idea, static and at rest. By contrast, it seems that we find in Bergson the idea that birth in beauty consists of differences of state or nature, an aesthetic feeling, meaning a felt sensation that gradually becomes richer and richer 26. Bergson’s conception of sensation is much less correlated with lack than Diotima’s, but
therefore transgression of laws. It cannot be generalized and is definable only in relation to that which cannot be replaced. Here, then, is 120 Jac Saorsa Deleuze’s economic principal mentioned earlier: generality is defined primarily in terms of exchange, whereas repetition is defined in terms of theft and gift. As the repeat, therefore, of the unrepeatable, “repetition-for-itself” renounces general character in order to embrace a profound and creative reality, and this perhaps is the
the impossibility of realizing “repetition-for-itself”, the impossibility of achieving a creative goal, where this means disassociating individuality from practice. I experience, then, that which Deleuze can only describe, and in my attempt to extrapolate theory through visual art, perhaps the most profound difference between artist and philosopher is embodied in the work itself. This leads me to a question with which I will conclude this introduction to the Drawing Out Deleuze project. Do the