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Kunst, Künstler, Konzept und Kontext. Intermediale und andersartige Bezugnahmen auf Visuell-Künstlerisches in der Lyrik Mayröckers, Klings, Grünbeins und Draesners

Friday, 18 September, 2009 - 14:00
Campus: Brussels Humanities, Sciences & Engineering campus
Faculty: Arts and Philosophy
Noël Reumkens
phd defence

In 1992 the American art historian and theorist Craig Owens identified the
“displacement from work to frame” as a central feature of postmodern artistic
production. Examples of this centrifugal displacement include works by such
influential artists as Daniel Buren, Marcel Broodthaers and Joseph Beuys. In the
works of these and other artists the loss of a “centre”, the abandonment of the sacred
canvas, pedestal etc. becomes manifest; the traditional, physical and tangible work
concept is exchanged by an expanded field of meaning, a marked, yet borderless

Central to this doctoral thesis is the question how the artistic movement from work to
frame, from ergon to parergon (Jacques Derrida, Jacques Dugast) or from one medial
product to its paramedial frame (Urs Meyer) is mirrored in the poetic work of four
contemporary German poets. In the last twenty years, Friederike Mayröcker,
Thomas Kling, Durs Grünbein and Ulrike Draesner all have written poetry that
explicitly refers to the field of the visual arts, but that can neither simply be viewed as
ekphrastic (i.e. descriptive) poetry, nor aims at the constitution of a so-called
intermedial as-if, the imitation of the medial ‘other’ (Rajewsky). In many of the
poems discussed and analysed in this thesis, it rather becomes evident that a work of
art does not derive its status from within itself, but from its surroundings, its
expanding and multiplying contexts.

The poems discussed in this thesis in manifold ways install themselves in the
contextual framework surrounding works and oeuvres and thus bestow upon
themselves the status of an allographic (cfr. Goodman) element belonging to the
parergonal, paramedial surroundings of the work of art in question. The alliterative
terms Kunst, Künstler, Konzept and Kontext (art, artist, concept, context) featured in
the title of the thesis are used to point out the gradual displacement from the actual,
physical work of art in Mayröcker’s, Kling’s, Grünbein’s and Draesner’s poems.