Agency (Kobe Matthys) | Tabakalera - Donostia / San Sebastián

Agency (Kobe Matthys)


"Agency" is an international initiative that was founded in 1992 by Kobe Matthys and has office in Brussels. Agency constitutes a growing “list of things” that resist the radical split between the classifications of nature and culture. This list of things is mostly derived from controversies and juridical cases involving intellectual property (copyrights, patents, trade marks, etc...) from the start of the enclosures of the commons in the 17th century until today and from various territories of world integrated capitalism. The colonial concept of intellectual property relies upon the fundamental assumption of the split between culture and nature and consequently between expressions and ideas, creations and facts, subjects and objects, humans and non-humans, originality and tradition, individuals and collectives, mind and body, etc... Each “thing” or controversy, included on the list, witnesses a resistance and a hesitation in terms of these divisions. Agency calls these “things” forth from its list in varying “assemblies”, which combine the making of exhibitions, performances and publications. Each assembly speculates around possible inclusions. All of Agency's assemblies look at the operative consequences of the apparatus of intellectual property for an ecology of diverse art practices and aim at caring for their singular modes of existence.