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for godot [archive]

research in poetry

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Polemics, Alain Badiou

Artists have long thought that the resolute destruction of the romantic schema and all of its vitalist and naturalist paraphernalia was the imperative of the day. Affirmationists lay claim to the singularity of a critical geneology. Throughout the twentieth century, great artists of all arts attempted to free art from the hold of romantic expressiveness and to endow it with its necessary coldness, in the very sense that Mallarme had already called forth the poetic Idea, for its suddenly appearing, like a constellation, cold with forgetfulness and obsolescence. These often isolated artists slowly composed configurations that have become legible only today. They advanced an art that is just as allergic to obscurantist hypnosis as it is to the pornographic stupidity of festive performances. An art that is neither that of Buddha, nor that of a desire caught between the fair and the morgue. An art that is effectively other than romanticism, an art capable of measuring up to what the poet Alvaro de Campos, the heteronym of Fernando Pessoa, called a 'mathematics of being.'

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