Workshop 4

Cultural Productions, Contentious Properties

Convenors: Danilo Mandic, Cristina S. Martinez

This workshop explores and challenges the contentious properties that both law and culture inform and perform. Considering different forms of cultural production and expression, it seeks an understanding of property rights, legal fictions, artistic practices of copying and appropriation. Taking as a point of departure Michel Serres’s notion of ‘appropriation through pollution’ and extending it to current case studies we will discuss and examine contentious claims and negotiations. To what extent are we in need to (or, bound to) discuss cultural production through legal structures? The relation between authors and users and the division between private and public maintain an ongoing tension between dichotomous viewpoints manifested in different spheres of cultural production, particularly as these are intensified by the proliferation of digital technology and the challenges it has introduced with regard to production, distribution and use of cultural expression. We will explore the legal concepts of property/ownership/appropriation, and question the extent to which the processes of relations/communication both precede and inform them with an attempt to understand and challenge the dominating and expanding proprietary principles of copyright.


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