Traction argues that contemporary art is defined by a moral economy of indeterminacy that allows curators and artists to imagine themselves on the other side of power. This self-positioning, in turn, leaves us politically bankrupt, intellectually stagnant, and aesthetically predictable. In his memoir-polemic, curator and writer Tirdad Zolghadr candidly reflects on his own experiences and the work of others. He also drafts possibilities for a logic and a support structure that can offer some purchase of their own, beyond the gravitational pull of business as usual. Ultimately, Traction calls for a renewed sense of profession, somewhere within the corridors of power where, for better or worse, contemporary art has long arrived.
Design by Aude Lehmann, Zurich