The Micropolitics Research Group investigates the forces and procedures that entangle artistic production and the flexible subjectivities of its producers into the fabric of late capitalism. Based primarily in London, the group carries out and analysis of issues ranging from the production of subjectivity in creative work, diplomacy, institutional analysis, radical pedagogy and concrete situations of free labour, ‘carrot work’, and creative industry.
The prefix micro does not indicate ‘small’ or ‘mere’. Nor does it assume a belief in the revolutionary potential of everyday life, or indicate a retreat into the inner life of the subject. Rather, it is invoked to access the registers of desire, vulnerability, affect and subjective implication that generate both artistic practices and the collective engines of cognitive capitalism. If current regimes of cultural and cognitive capitalism are predicated on subjective forces, on the collective production of knowledge and surplus creativity, how can artists begin to distinguish, let alone imagine a practice that does not merely feed and replicate the machine itself? How can art practices that in Suely Rolnik’s words bring ‘mutations of the sensible’ into the realm of the visible or speakable, refuse or exit the limited field of possibility inscribed by late capitalism? Finally, if it is the very regimes of cognitive capitalism that not only capture but also produce flexible, creative subjectivities, how could we imagine a micropolitics of subjectivation? The research of the group will evolve from these core questions and will aim to investigate them through (a) theoretical reflection and production (b) the analysis of concrete situations and existing practices (c) the organisation of encounters and events.