Ruth Anderwald + Leonhard Grond
Vienna, Austria


© Anderwald + Grond

The Art of Being Governed

            The Art of Being Governed, a site-specific conceptual artwork developed for Kunsthaus Graz and its social media communication channels is a pioneering art project in public digital space. Paraphrasing Michel Foucault's speech What is Critique?, Anderwald + Grond design five videos that pose the question of how we do not want to be governed. Based on Alexander Kluges' minute films, they employ the principle of montage, whereas the question of how we do not want to be governed is juxtaposed with video images from the public digital space (e.g. YouTube) and reflected beyond the boundaries of their conventional levels of meaning.

        Throughout September 2019, the month in which the Austrian election campaign culminates in the National Parliament elections, these video contributions will be launched weekly on advertising spaces of Facebook and Instagram, as well as on the social media channels of the Kunsthaus Graz. The Humanic-advertisements (1969-1995), which brought contemporary art and literature into television advertising, are its historical model. This project functions in a similar manner, although it operates in public digital space, where political debate, as well as political manipulation, have developed over the last years. The web platforms, that Facebook and Instagram offer are based on algorithms that define what is shown, to whom, in which way, and what is excluded. The exchange with these algorithms is not only part of the project but has  become an integral part of our daily lives and the way we are governed and govern ourselves – individually and as a society.

        The Art of Being Governed is an innovative experiment in cooperation with Kunsthaus Graz to reflect the platforms of Facebook and Instagram as art-producing media and to reclaim the public digital space – which is currently dedicated to commercial/political interests – for artistic expression.

Disclaimer: The project team have made every effort to cite the authors of the remixed materials, videos and soundfiles correctly. We apologise for any inadvertent errors and omissions. Parties who nevertheless believe they can claim specific legal rights are invited to contact the project team via