Subtle Acts of Resistance through the Practice of Everyday Life

serving pieA dinner devoted to the work of Michel de Certeau [1999]

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As a part of a lecture series entitled, The Mediated Image*, De Geuzen hosted a three course dinner devoted to the work of Michel de Certeau. During the meal, there were related presentations and visual interventions by De Certeau admirers Rob van Kranenburg and Mike Tyler.

Michel de Certeau has been an important figure in shifting modes of analysis away from the study of media as object or textual surface towards the research of how people use, interpret and reinvent media for their own purposes. As an ethnologist and historian, de Certeau refused to remain faithful to any singular specialised discipline. The theoretical framework from which he operated was impressively broad, traversing the lines between anthropology, sociology, philosophy, history, mysticism and literature. He radically questioned his own position within discursive practices by problematising the inevitable power relation that arises in studying a subject while simultaneously laying bare the numerous limitations of representation. Beyond the more self-reflexive aspects of his project, he examined how the weak attain power through subtle tactics of manipulation and play. According to de Certeau, suppressed voices emerge through the employment of guises, appropriation of media and creation of interruptions. As he points out with acuity in his book, The Practice of Everyday Life (1974) “Everyday life invents itself by poaching in countless ways on the property of others”.

Rob van Kranenburg (1964) Worked and taught at Tilburg University as a research assistant after his studies in Language and Literature. Currently, he is working in Ghent developing and designing idiosyncratic and explorative online learning environments in the culture curriculum. As a writer he is part of the artscollective Alarrb.

Mike Tyler (Ventura, California, 1964) Artist / garden designer / film maker currently based in Amsterdam. His work has appeared in numerous exhibitions and festivals including: Kunsthalle Bern, Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, and Kunstlerhaus Bethanien, Berlin.

*The Mediated Image was a series of lectures and presentations programmed by De Geuzen looking at how images are constructed, interpreted, manipulated and received. Besides examining how images are made and displayed, the series explored key figures who have shaped contemporary media discourse, such as Guy Debord, Jean Baudrillard, Marshall McLuhan and Michel de Certeau.

jackets with textTake-home quotes fastoned to the buttons of jackets
full tabledinner table which was adorned with De Certeau quotes
the place of a tactic