[Publication Program]: Coincidences in Prepositions, December 2021-May 2022, Harun Farocki Institut, Philippine Contemporary Art Network (PCAN), and UP Vargas Museum

Coincidences in Prepositions is a publication program conceptualized to review questions, propositions, and solutions that have been set up in the dis/continuities of many colonial milieus. Accessing the seemingly imprecise, insufficient in the task at hand—in its scales, gradients, and panics perceptible or possible to commit to right now, Coincidences engages with the difficulty of juxtaposing worlds and traditions through their images and imaginations. Prepositions then reconsiders different assemblages in thought and practice that have been crafted to work in existing technico-moral procedures and to respond with constantly shifting ethical systems.

The project facilitates the entry of method, theory, and historicism in consecutive times: first, through speech, gesture, and the performative in a series of discursive events on Zoom (All the Missing Limbs of a Pre/oposition); second, through the readily migratory screen emerging from a singular artistic output at the intersection of research-university-museum (Harun Farocki, Vargas Museum, Manila); and third, through inter-con-textual registers published, coded, and edited virtually for a future readership (Rosa Mercedes Issue 04).

Coincidences in Prepositions hopes to reveal how communities of fate can mutually constitute a “problem-space“ (David Scott), what concept-work they can instantaneously convene, and which of their and when ethical practices can fuse or diverge in urgencies for contemporary modes of how to live together. Hosted in art, a field assumed to carry “comparison[s] in one and the same time and in consecutive times” (Iveković), this confrontational turn within the asymmetries of the comparative might be the reconciliatory position or foster a possibility of repair in a political program of working together/reaching out. It contributes to the understanding and transformation of denaturalized perspectives and technologies as well as their afterlives and “weak”/“poor” fabrications.


Coincidences in Prepositions links multiple loci of enunciation from Nora M Alter, Yasmin Tri Aryani, Christoph Balzar, Amy Lien/Enzo Camacho, Glenn Diaz, Abdul Nazir bin Harith Fadzillah, Farabi Fakih, Harun Farocki, Patrick Flores, Ramon Guillermo, Doreen Mende, Ying Sze Pek, Zikri Rahman, Rachel Thompson, Lim Paik Yin, Soyoung Yoon, Wong Binghao and more.

Initiated by Renan Laru-an & titre provisoire (Cathleen Schuster/Marcel Dickhage). Reading the scholarship of Aihwa Ong, Goh Beng Lan, and Rada Iveković has been integral in this initiative.

In partnership with the Harun Farocki Institut, Philippine Contemporary Art Network (PCAN), and UP Vargas Museum. Supported by Goethe-Institut.

More information on the Zoom events All the Missing Limbs of a Proposition here.

December 5th, 2021 — Projects / Publication

Olena Lyubchenko on Whiteness, Expropriation, War, and Social Reproduction in Ukraine (via LeftEast): “[…] when we hear on the news that ‘Ukraine is fighting a European war’ and ‘Ukraine is defending Europe’, amid images of fleeing ‘poor white’ women with children prioritized over racialized ‘Others’, ‘Ukraine’ is being made ‘white’ in the global imaginary. That is, “the injunction to ‘return to Europe’ by way of Europeanization is enabled and conditioned on the mythologies of Western civilization, and that Europeanization at once marks (promulgates) and unmarks (naturalizes) racial whiteness” [Nadezhda Husakouskaya and Randi Gressgård]. The paradox is that Europe’s existence as such has only been possible precisely because of the exploitation of global working peoples through expropriation of resources and today neoliberal economic reforms and reproduced by feminized labour.”

Vasyl Cherepanyn about the “inertness, hiding behind the European Wall” (via L’Internationale): “Many Western institutions that have been claiming ‘radical political engagement’ for years, have simply resorted to a white cube radicalism and self-satisfying humanitarianism, too afraid of acting politically beyond their comfort zone and unsettling their publics and authorities by attempting to affect the decision-making process regarding the Ukrainian cause.”

May 28th, 2022

Tatsiana Shchurko on the War in Ukraine, Entangled Imperialisms, and Transnational Feminist Solidarity, via LeftEast (May 2, 2022): “[An] uneven knowledge production and the many implications of the war against Ukraine reveal the dire need to develop a feminist anti-capitalist critique of multiple imperialisms. This language should grow from within the occupied and suppressed communities of Eastern Europe and Eurasia. An anti-imperialist and anti-capitalist feminist positionality grasps that the local is part of a global in an effort to build transnational connections of mutual aid and support against state and corporate violence. For example, statements of solidarity with Ukraine expressed by the International Committee of Indigenous Peoples of Russia and Native American communities along with the anti-war feminist march in Bishkek (Kyrgyzstan) on March 8, 2022, pointing out that the war in Ukraine should be of concern for a broad transnational community, may serve as instrumental examples of alternative anti-capitalist and anti-imperialist solidarities that stretch beyond state regulations and macro-politics and foreground decolonial perspectives, necessary in addressing entanglements of multiple imperialisms. Such solidarities also bring to light hidden interconnections of the past that allowed for distant communities to survive and support each other against the violence of imperialist intervention and its attendant capitalist exploitation. Thus, the march in Bishkek reminds of the socialist roots of the International Women’s Day to call for internationalist, intersectional, class solidarity against imperialism and militarism.”

Vasyl Cherepanyn on that “It’ll take more than tanks to ease Germany’s guilt” (via Politico): “Since the Soviet Union’s collapse, Germany has been imposing neocolonial optics on its Eastern European ‘peripheries,’ and on the post-Soviet space in particular, where Ukraine was long considered a gray buffer zone about which the EU was ‘deeply concerned.’ Germany didn’t bother itself much with differentiating between former Soviet countries’ pasts. Even until recently, any Ukrainian agenda in Germany was often ‘balanced’ with a Russian perspective, so as to not exclude the latter by any means.”

An unnamed anarchist and art scholar, who joined the Territorial Defense Forces, quoted by Olexii Kuchanskyi in an essay on “Digital Leviathan and His Nuclear Tail” (via Your Art and e-flux notes): “At dawn, Dima and I talked about cinema. Dima believes that cinema is inferior to literature as a means of expression because you spend much more time with a book than a film. It’s a really interesting point, something to dig into. I studied at the department of art theory & history and I never thought of it. Dima served in the military after school and worked at the factory all his life. He listens to rap, smokes pot, and tries to have fun. He is thirty-eight, his child was born last year. He likes Wong Kar-wai and is a fan of Asian cinema in general. Dima communicates by quoting Omar Khayyam, Confucius, and other awesome guys.”

April 20th, 2022

Vasyl Cherepanyn (Visual Culture Research Centre, Kyiv) on Putin’s “World War Z” and the West’s deadly “foot-dragging”, via Project Syndicate: “The main feature of this Western condition is constant belatedness. The West has always been too late, incapable of acting ahead and instead just reacting to what has already happened. As a Ukrainian joke went at the time, ‘While the European Union was taking a decision, Russia took Crimea.’ Then as now, Ukrainians wondered, ‘What is the West’s red line? What will compel the West to act instead of waiting and discussing when to intervene?’”

Barbara Wurm on Lithuanian director Mantas Kvedaravičius, killed in Mariupol, via Die Welt: “Kvedaravičius unfolded a whole spectrum of visual anthropology over a decade with only three films [Barzakh, Mariupolis, Parthenon]. It now awaits evaluation and exploration. The time will come. The films themselves make possible an infinite immersion in the matter of the world, between dream and reality, horror and everyday life, facts and phenomenal imagology.”

April 5th, 2022
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