corporate [work] - Do you know where your brains are?

Root Event

4. Werkleitz Biennale real[work]

Parent Event

Filmprogramm
corporate [work] - Do you know where your brains are?
8. 7. 2000
D 2000

corporate [work] - Do you know where your brains are?
Florian Wüst

Artists and activists have developed, over the last decades, practices towards the subversive appropriation of the terminology and working methods of politics, economics and media. Paper Tiger Television in New York is one of the most important examples for how, using creative means, one can transmit critical contents in the arena of national tele-communities. The own camcorder and Public Access TV channels contain the A to Z of the formula: Taking control of our Images - and Lives.

Whereas Paper Tiger Television aimed above all at the representational monopoly of the media, the artists’ group ®™ark aims its actions and discourses against the unbridled power of corporations.

™ark calls upon workers, employees and the self-employed to take part in their contemporary assault on machinery, although they themselves offer a corporate format, which is worth investing in.” ®™ark has helped fund the sabotage or subversion of dozens of corporate products. As a privately held corporation, ®™ark allows investors to participate in blacklisted or illegal cultural production with minimum risk.”

The radicalism of this artistic practice gains through the potential of the Internet a new dimension, what the so-called “Toywar” (www. toywar.com) recently proved: in a net activist campaign without comparison, the net art platform etoy succeeded in defending its domain name against the imperial demands of the E-commerce giant eToys. (Conspicuous here, is that the game with the military jargon of “Toywar” ultimately gives a taste of the secret motto of the belligerent culture of our times: pacifism of the left, onto the scrapheap).

“As ordinary corporations are solely and entirely machines to increase their shareholders’ wealth (often to the detriment of culture and life) so ®™ark is a machine to improve its shareholders’ culture and life (sometimes to the detriment of corporate wealth).” As obvious as the machine-likeness of economic structures is, it still requires people, who invest their “subjectivity”, in order to keep running the exploitation for exploitation’s sake. To be taken from Harun Farocki: “Ziele: Die Schulung” documents the learning process of male managers, which is meant to serve the aim of making the managers stand up for themselves in the day-to-day business dealings and in their relations with customers and subordinates. Maximising success is only to be guaranteed through maximum identification. “The souls of the employees must become part of the company, is what they say in modern management consulting language.” (Lazzarato)

Attractive perspectives then for the autonomous spirit on the upswing of immaterial work. Or would you be interested in alternatives? Then you can safely switch over to (r)(tm)ark’s advertising trailer “Bringing IT to YOU!” Afterwards two representatives from ®™ark will gladly inform you of further projects and offers. And feel free to ask, should you have any questions!

Lazzarato, Maurizio: Immaterielle Arbeit, in: Umherschweifende Produzenten. Berlin 1998, p 41

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Florian Wüst

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