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Spike #57 – There is no such thing as society
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Interview Gran Fury
The New York artist/activist collective Gran Fury emerged in 1988 out of ACT UP. As “individuals united in anger and dedicated to exploiting the power of art to end the AIDS crisis”, they shaped public discourse about AIDS with iconic agitprop imagery. By Alison M. Gingeras and Jamieson Webster

Essay
“The Last Great Era of Low Self-Esteem” by Liam Gillick

Portrait Philippe Thomas
Within the booming art market of the 1980s, Philippe Thomas radically called into question the star system of the time. On an artist who exposed the paradoxical entanglements of commerce, art, and authorship to set the terms of his own self-erasure. By Barbara Casavecchia

Media
The Face and i-D first appeared in London in 1980, inventing the idea of the “style bible”, and with it a new kind of modern youth culture. That cultural moment is clearly over now. But how did it begin, and where did it go wrong? By Dean Kissick

Exhibition Histories
Sarah Morris and Thaddaeus Ropac on “The Silent Baroque” (1987) in Salzburg

Essay
“Protest and Survive” by Bob Nickas

Tech
In the 80s the artwork became a speculation object. Today blockchain startups are struggling to shake off the last of its aura. By Daniel Keller

Interview Pippa Garner
Back when artist Pippa Garner was still called Phil, she worked as a combat artist in the Vietnam War. After that she studied automobile design and designed ironic functional products for a future that was never to come. A conversation about living in willed alienation. By Fiona Duncan

The End is Night
“Falling in and out of time” by Ella Plevin

Postcard
from Tehran by Mahan Moalemi

Music
What is the sound of a decade in which society is consigned to history's trash heap? One made up of perfect surfaces that hide the suffering beneath. On the music criticism of Patrick Bateman (American Psycho). By Rob Horning

Curator's Key
Lynne Cooke on Rosemarie Trockel's “Made West in Germany” (1987)

Field Notes
In the early 80s Vienna for the first time had an art scene that wanted to be more than local. A conversation about the extension of the Cologne-New York axis to Vienna, and long nights with John Baldessari. By Edek Bartz & Peter Pakesch

Q/A Mathieu Copeland
What was postmodernism?

Q/A Helene Winer
What did the 80s do to the New York art scene?

Artist's Favourites
By Ericka Beckman

Q/A Tariq Goddard
Why is Jean Baudrillard the signature thinker of the 80s?

Image Contributions
by Jessica Diamond, Ed Fornieles, Richard Hoeck & John Miller, Ida Ekblad, Julia Wachtel

One Work
Joanna Fiduccia on Gretchen Bender's intro credits for “America's Most Wanted”

Views
Palermo, Vienna, Salzburg, Mönchengladbach, Berlin, Dresden, Frankfurt, Zurich, Basel, Bucharest, London, New York