Multiple signatures of subtraction

Luzar, R (2014) 'Multiple signatures of subtraction.' Mnemoscape Magazine, 1 (Sep). pp. 144-159.

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A signature is commonly understood as the inscription of one’s name. A signature, more emphatically, inscribes who one authentically is. However, signatures do not always graphically preserve and express presence. This rupture, for instance, is what takes place under a certain multiple signature, so to speak, a multiple signature made by three artists – Janez Janša, Janez Janša and Janez Janša. In 2007, Emil Hrvatin, Davide Grassi, and Žiga Kariž changed their names to Janez Janša, the exact same name of the former, controversial prime minister of the Republic of Slovenia. Proposed by the artists group as a “readymade name,” the appropriation of the prime minister’s name has become the ongoing focus of the Janša artist group’s conceptual and activist subversion of hegemonic authority, a law that substantialises presence. Signatures, a series of nine triptychs composed of black acrylic on canvas, is an important work in this regard. In part, I will look closer at Signatures in relation to an antecedent action-based work, Signature Event Context – iterating an early essay by Jacques Derrida and playfully extending his deconstruction of the law as a presence of force and authority. My intention is not merely to explain these militant works, which try to subvert authority by over identifying the law in name; rather, I want to reconsider a radically negated presence posed by the multiple signature – Janša, Janša, Janša – and rethink the deconstruction of the law through notions of subtraction and refusal.

Item Type: Article

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Subjects: N Fine Arts > NX Arts in general
Divisions: Bath School of Art, Film and Media
Date Deposited: 29 Oct 2015 17:46
Last Modified: 15 Aug 2021 09:41
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