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Intervention: “The Broken Oath of Democracy”

The statues of Spinoza and Thorbecke in the hallway of Stroom Den Haag

Intervention at the book presentation of Hans van Houwelingen: Undone
Stroom Den Haag, The Hague NL
December 11, 2011

 

ὄυτε λόγος ἐχυρὸς, ὄυτε ὅρκος φοβερός
– Thucidydes[1]

 

Ladies and gentlemen, good afternoon.

 

For me it is an honor to speak here, today, as we are closing Hans van Houwelingen’s exhibition Until It Stops Resembling Itself, curated by Mihnea Mircan, and at the same time are celebrating the official presentation of a new guidebook on monumentalism and art in public space, Undone, published by Jap Sam Books. For many months it has been my pleasure, as managing editor, to work with Hans, Mihnea, Eleonoor from Jap Sam, Jane and Arno from Stroom, Metahaven, and all the contributors to this publication, and first I would like to thank all of you who are present with us here or in thought.

 

At the same time I have been requested to respond to Undone, in particular to the contribution of Jonathan Lahey Dronsfield, entitled “Exchange Encounter: On Walking with Hans van Houwelingen’s Statues,” and his performance here which featured excerpts from a book “to come,” The Swerve of Freedom after Spinoza, which, however, will never be written.
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