8. ideal


institutional knowledge, categorization, the Book of Laws, harmony, perfection

8. ideal

Ideals are the guidelines that orient people’s lives. They provide a standard to put things into perspective, to get a grip on the disagreements that rule our everyday lives. They form the basis for coming to a just decision on how to proceed. Ideal is the card that represents our need for harmony and perfection. For getting a grip on our intuitive principles to translate them into an objective standard to look at the world through the perspectives of Justice, Beauty and Freedom. This is the card of the knowledge that is gathered through time: Minerva’s owl flying out at night, transcribing lived experience into the Book of Law(s) for all. Ideal is the card that strives for the creation of a balanced and harmonious society, and does so by creating normative rule systems. Often institutionalized, Ideal is the card of the Law, the Arts institutions, the Academy and the Government.

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the tender institute (2012)

Elke Van Campenhout
Who’s afraid of the Institute?
In the whirlwind of changing subsidy policies, and political crisis, the Institute has become a
partner to be mistrusted. Paraphrasing Dorothy Parker you could say that the Institute in most
contemporary engaged art practices is ‘not one to be tossed aside lightly. It should be thrown
with great force.’ What has become clear from all the waves of institutional critique that have
fueled the visual arts production in the last decennia, is the Institute’s extreme flexibility to
reinvent itself, to recuperate and produce the ruling discourses, in a constant craving for the
new. The Institute in this understanding has become synonymous with capital power struggles,
with normative regulation of the arts scene, and with an unsavory attachment to a global
economy that creates and sustains inequality, poor labor conditions and a sanctimonious elitist
attitude towards knowledge and its distribution.
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