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Fluxus, or the Work of Art in the Age of Information

Fluxus, or the Work of Art in the Age of Information Fluxus Over the past two decades, critical and historical understanding of Fluxus has shifted dramatically. Upon its emergence in the early sixties, it confronted criticism as little more than a belated rehabilitation of Dadaist provocation.1 In time, however, its reception changed to such a degree that it is now widely hailed as a crucial precursor to the conceptual and performative practices of the late sixties and early seventies.2 Indeed, today Fluxus is typically presented as the most politically progressive instantiation of John Cage's aesthetic of chance and, at the same time, as the advent of post-war institutional critique.3 Effective though the current perspective is in capturing 1 Fluxus artists were aware of this criticism and sought to distinguish their work from that of the Dadaists. Robert Filliou, for example, explicitly distanced his work and that of other Fluxus artists from what he called "the trap of anti-art (neo-dadaism)." (Letter to the editor of the Berlinske Tidende, Copenhagen, December 21, 1963. Copy of the original, Archiv Sohm, Staatsgalerie Stuttgart). Similarly, Dick Higgins noted: "I knew several of the old Dadaists, had been raised on their work, and there was no doubt in my mind that what we happenings and http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png symploke University of Nebraska Press

Fluxus, or the Work of Art in the Age of Information

symploke , Volume 23 (1) – Dec 31, 2015

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Publisher
University of Nebraska Press
Copyright
Copyright © 2008 symploke.
ISSN
1534-0627
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Abstract

Fluxus Over the past two decades, critical and historical understanding of Fluxus has shifted dramatically. Upon its emergence in the early sixties, it confronted criticism as little more than a belated rehabilitation of Dadaist provocation.1 In time, however, its reception changed to such a degree that it is now widely hailed as a crucial precursor to the conceptual and performative practices of the late sixties and early seventies.2 Indeed, today Fluxus is typically presented as the most politically progressive instantiation of John Cage's aesthetic of chance and, at the same time, as the advent of post-war institutional critique.3 Effective though the current perspective is in capturing 1 Fluxus artists were aware of this criticism and sought to distinguish their work from that of the Dadaists. Robert Filliou, for example, explicitly distanced his work and that of other Fluxus artists from what he called "the trap of anti-art (neo-dadaism)." (Letter to the editor of the Berlinske Tidende, Copenhagen, December 21, 1963. Copy of the original, Archiv Sohm, Staatsgalerie Stuttgart). Similarly, Dick Higgins noted: "I knew several of the old Dadaists, had been raised on their work, and there was no doubt in my mind that what we happenings and

Journal

symplokeUniversity of Nebraska Press

Published: Dec 31, 2015

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