Art After Liberalism 

Nicholas Gamso

Published by Columbia University Press, 2022
ISBN 9781941332689

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Art after Liberalism is an account of creative practice at a moment of converging political and social rifts – a moment that could be described as a crisis of liberalism. The apparent failures of liberal thinking are a starting point for an inquiry into emergent ways of living, acting, and making art in the company of others.

What happens when the framework of the nation-state, the figure of the enterprising individual, and the premise of limitless development can no longer be counted on to produce a world worth living in? It is increasingly clear that these commonplace liberal conceptions have failed to improve life in any lasting way. In fact, they conceal fundamental connections to enslavement, colonization, moral debt, and ecological devastation. 

Nicholas Gamso speaks to Pierre d’Alancaisez about the ills of liberalism and art’s role in deciding on what may come after the impasse.

Nicholas Gamso is a writer and academic who works across theory, visual culture, performance, and space/place. He’s an editor at Places.

Kara Walker, A Subtlety, 2014
Manaf Halbouni, Monument, 2017
Forensic Architecture, Triple Chaser, 2019
Wolfgang Tillman’s anti-Brexit campaign poster.
Ren Hang