4.14 / Outer Spaces

April 23 2013


April 24, 2013. Astrophysicist Carl Sagan and the philosopher Henri Lefebvre make for interesting bedfellows. Matt Stromberg quotes Sagan in his review of Falling from Great Heights, in which the scientist describes contemplating the cosmos as “a faint sensation of a distant memory.” Meanwhile, John Zarobell calls upon Lefebvre's idea that “[e]very language is located in a space...and every discourse is emitted from a space.” However much of a stretch it is to connect cosmology to Marxism, the juxtaposition of the two quotes invites reflection on how we delineate space. In one sense, boundary-making is always a synthetic exercise; the territorial edges articulated by language or technologies or economies. At the same time, these limits demarcate another space, beyond what our current politics may allow. For this reason, the Star Trek character Nyota Uhura—the subject of a video by the artist Simon Leigh, profiled in this issue—traverses a radically different frontier than those of her fellow shipmates, one her very presence makes less impossible to imagine. Enjoy – PM


Simone Leigh

Simone Leigh

By Matthew Harrison Tedford

She optimistically claims that soon black artists will no longer be told that they must make work that is not about blackness.

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Silence By Rob Marks


UC Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive (BAMPFA) More »