This Kinetic World: Rethinking the Grid (Neo-Baroque Calls)


  • Lara D. Nielsen IE University - Madrid



grid, neo-baroque, systems, structures, controls, Andalucia, Cartagena, Singapore, Foucault, Deleuze


In performance research today, as in the 1960s, the pressing question is: how to do things with systems. I return to the grid to attend both sites and modes of cultural practices and techniques  (technologies) that so powerfully harness and transform the control society.  My approach to the grid as dispositif seeks to open familiar dialogues, about variants of subjectivity and presence, to the materialities and devices of systems, structures, and bureaucratic operations. As seeing machine, the grid’s story includes linear perspective, geometricization, and fugitivity. Defined by consistency and contradition, by optics, haptics, and cybernetics, I identify grid logics with the neo-baroque. Exploring the grid through tiling, weaving, seafaring, and curating techniques that link the administrative and the algorithmic state, I discuss the arts of two architectural sites in the port cities of Cartagena, Colombia and Singapore.

Author Biography

Lara D. Nielsen, IE University - Madrid

Writer and Professor Associado Lara D. Nielsen works with transnational arts, medias, and economies. Recent published works can be found in Law and/as Performance; Scapegoat: Architecture/Landscape/Political Economy; and Text & Performance Quarterly. Nielsen's first collaborative book project, Neoliberalism and Global Theatres (2012) studies complex relationships between the arts and free markets, globally.


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How to Cite

Nielsen, L. D. (2017). This Kinetic World: Rethinking the Grid (Neo-Baroque Calls). Performance Philosophy, 3(1), 285–309.