Since our first issue in 2011 all-over has evolved from a student project to a peer-reviewed journal, always committed to open access, critical curiosity and supporting emerging scholars. Every issue featured an artist, who engaged with the specificities of the online magazine as a medium and our publishing approaches. Eponymously,
all-over aimed to be a magazine for art and aesthetics: contributing to a wide discourse, addressing artistic and scientific questions related to historic and contemporary art.
Now, after eight years, we bring this project to a close. The end of an era tends to bring out an “archival impulse,” as Hal Foster put it when analyzing contemporary art practices after modernism. In view of its distinctive and thus pervasive character Foster calls this impulse a tendency in its own right: “At a time when – artistically and politically – almost anything goes and almost nothing sticks,” all our 15 issues as well as 15 editorials, 49 articles, 27 reviews, 13 interviews and 14 artistic contributions will remain accessible in our online archive. Could one translate the quintessentially non-locatable online archive as Foster’s ultimate non-place of utopia that becomes not only a place of return for the belated but also a departing point for new becoming – a new form of discourse?
For this issue, Sebastian Mühl examines the critical potential of historiographical tendencies in contemporary art: Drawing on archival art works, such as Tacita Dean’s Bubble House, Mühl questions the universalist character of modernist utopias rather than perpetuating their ideals. In regard of the “historiographical turn”, Mühl outlines specificities of a post-utopian approach to the archive and discusses the artwork’s entanglement with models and matters of history.
In a different approach to the historiographic mechanisms in Western art, Sophie Publig examines indigenous artist Beau Dick’s contribution to documenta 14. Dick’s exhibited masks took a double role as art object as well as ritual object within the center of the contemporary art arena and challenged not only paradigms of exhibition making: based on the controversial discourse that this display has initiated, Publig questions the inadequate system of contemporary art terminology and the predetermined set of rules for inclusion or rather exclusion that comes along with an aesthetic canon of the western art history.
The reactivation of historical material and its adaption to the contemporary plays a key role in Thomas Helbig’s contribution The Presence of the Historical in Christian Petzold’s Transit – a multilayered investigation of temporalities and their respective transitoriness or revivification in filmmaking. Helbig views the film as a parable in which histories of emigration are transferred from the times of fascism to the present and unfolded in contemporary conditions, while the Kafkaesque farce of denied access at allegedly open doors remains unchanged.
Repetition and remembrance are also at the heart of the interview with art collector Isi Fiszman and historian Bernard Coppens that Lotte Beckwé conducted for all-over. For their conversation, the parties travelled to Waterloo – the historical site of Napoleon’s last disastrous battle. Both, Fiszman and Coppens have visited the site before, in the 1970s when they took artists like Marcel Broodthaers, James Lee Byars and Joseph Beuys to visit the place with its lion monument. We publish the records of their re-visit in honor of Isi Fiszman, initiator of the artist’s Waterloo-tourism, who, unfortunately and untimely, passed away not long after the conversation was held.
Amongst the many men of letters whom Broodthaers honored and referenced in his artworks, was the French poet Stephane Mallarmé. In an artist’s book of 1969, Broodthaers republished Mallarmé’s poem Un coup des dés with all the words replaced by black bars, thus drawing attention to the arrangement of space and words in the poem. In her essay Verssuche, Stefanie Heinzl analyzes the poetic structures in Mallarmé’s spatial arrangement of words pointing out his sustained interest in the connections and breaks between the visible and audible character of language.
In his double-review, Steyn Bergs taps into another area of the visualization of sound: two exhibitions, w serves imperialism at w139 in Amsterdam and Kunsthalle for Music at Witte de With in Rotterdam, set out to present artworks and artistic practices, which employ music and sound: How can art institutions host, present, represent music? Taking into account matters of attention and institutionalized manners, Bergs presents a political reading of (art) institutions and their transpositional potentials.
In our last all-over-picture-spread artist Travis Wyche tests the potentials and limits of artistic interventions by giving up a dedicated space within the magazine and instead intervening in the production process of this issue. His interference defies a predetermined space but permeates our final publication, as he already accompanied us through the publishing process. His participation also resulted in a visual representation of the relations of the many entities at work in the creation of an issue of all-over.
Behind all of these entities stand persons: our authors and artists, our graphic designers and peer-reviewers, our readers and our hosts – all of which have contributed to make this magazine what it is. And even though all-over is all over we hope the discussions will continue on all sides.
Our thanks go to all contributors, to former editorial member and co-founder Dominique Laleg, and especially to our graphic designers Michael Hübner (Issue #2 – Issue #8) and Boah Kim (Issue #9 – Issue #15) for their tireless creative input. Last but not least “thank you” to our readership, that has grown over the years and given us reason to continue this unique project. Once again, we wish you a good read!
Hannah Bruckmüller, Jürgen Buchinger, Barbara Reisinger, Stefanie Reisinger