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The Ubu Effect

Holmboe, RD; (2016) The Ubu Effect. Doctoral thesis , UCL (University College London).

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Abstract

This thesis considers the works of contemporary visual artists through the lens of Alfred Jarry’s Ubu Roi (1896). I begin by arguing that the play marked a founding moment in the history of abstraction, one that cuts against the grain of convention and common sense. I relate this mode of abstraction to what Jarry calls phynance and argue that this category emerges in Ubu Roi as a material process that can be understood in psychic, physiological and economic terms. It is with this possibility in mind that the following chapters seek to challenge previous understandings of abstraction in the visual arts. In order to do so I analyse a condensed range of artistic practices from the contemporary moment. By paying close attention to the formal properties of the artwork, I attempt to demonstrate how the artwork can be understood as both an economic and pathological object, either neurotic, psychotic, perverted, paranoiac or hypochondriac.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Title: The Ubu Effect
Event: UCL
Language: English
Keywords: Real Abstraction, Psychoanalysis, Contemporary Art, Theory, Alfred Jarry, Pataphysics
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1485833
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