Miraculations of the Void

What is ‘Japanese capitalism’? In the 1950s, Kōzō Uno focused on what he called the ‘nihil’ of capital’s inner drive. Left to its own devices, capitalist exchange tends to flatten all obstructive distinctions, so that ultimately—ideally—it describes a pure circle, a circuit of self-reinforcing speculation. In actuality, however, its form is not simply circular but something like a twisted loop; unable to account transparently for its own grounding conditions, capitalism is forced into continual selfdeformation, its logical ‘inside’ coextending with its troublesome ‘outside’. And since it cannot rid itself of its obstructions, it requires their continual recoding or naturalisation, their paradoxical legitimation as exceptions. Capital could be conceived along these lines as a pure surface ‘miraculating’ its own depth.

 

Image: Propeller Guggeheim NYC museum, 2010. Photo: Piero d'Houin dit Triboulet. Image source: Wiki Commons

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Chris Arneaud-Clarke is a critic. He graduated from the University of Tasmania with a Bachelor of Arts, and has taught art and cultural theory at various art schools and universities in Australia. His author photo was taken by Lou Conboy, at an event held at Contemporary Art Tasmania in 2017.

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