In Enemy Territory

Thinking About Contemporariness in a Post-Pandemic World

Wednesday from 7 to 28 April 2021 - 6pm

Free, until full capacity is reached, with prior ticket collection on the Museo Reina Sofía website from 10am on the last working day before the activity. A maximum of 1 per person.

Online platform
English and Spanish with simultaneous translation
Director of the Humanities Series
José María Lassalle
Manuel Borja-Villel
Coordinated by
Beatriz Martínez Hijazo
Organised by
Museo Reina Sofía, Cercle d’Economía and MACBA
Hito Steyerl, Is the Museum a Battlefield?, 2013
Hito Steyerl, Is the Museum a Battlefield?, 2013

In Enemy Territory alludes to a phrase uttered by Marcel Broodthaers, who understood, in the 1960s and 1970s, the light and shade of the burgeoning contemporary art system at the time, at odds with historical avant-garde movements. The utopian promises of a modernity which sought to transform the world from the outside, without observing its increasingly blurred limits, had for Broodthaers become unsustainable — to him, the territory of art became a territory of conquest. To some degree, and as Italian philosopher Franco Bifo Berardi recently explained, COVID-19 has left society on a threshold, a time that is “not for conclusions” but one in which to analyse and take up a position before new perspectives. Therefore, rethinking forms of cultural production and institutions as spaces that extend beyond representation is inescapable.

Inside the framework of the Humanities Series promoted by Cercle d’Economia, Barcelona, and under the direction of José María Lasalle, In Enemy Territory is a series of lectures and conversations curated by Manuel Borja-Villel, and will explore concepts such as sustainability, ecology, connections and care. Marco Baravalle, Ferran Barenblit, Manuel Borja-Villel, Timothy Morton, Nelly Richard and Hito Steyerl all outline their reflections around these considerations in different virtual encounters organised by the Museo Reina Sofía and Cercle d’Economía, Barcelona, in collaboration with MACBA.   


Wednesday, 7 April 2021 - 6pm

Opening overseen by José Manuel Rodríguez Uribes, minister of Culture and Sport

Series presentation conducted by Ferran Barenblit, Manuel Borja-Villel and José María Lassalle

Encounter with Timothy Morton. Kalunga

Wednesday, 14 April 2021 - 6pm

Encounter with Marco Baravalle. Art Power(lessness) in the Pandemic

Wednesday, 21 April 2021 - 6pm

Encounter with Hito Steyerl. Composting the Artworld

Wednesday, 28 April 2021 - 6pm

Encounter with Nelly Richard. Chile Woke Up: Proof and Paradoxes of the (Aesthetic, Critical and Political) Vision

Series conclusion by Manuel Borja-Villel


Marco Baravalle is a member of S.a.L.E. Docks, a collective and an independent space for visual arts, activism, and experimental theatre located in what had been an abandoned salt-storage facility in Dorsoduro, Venice, Italy. Founded in 2007, its programming includes activist-group meetings, formal exhibitions, and screenings. Baravalle is a research fellow at INCOMMON. In praise of community. Shared creativity in arts and politics in Italy (1959-1979), a project hosted by IUAV, University of Venice. He is a member of IRI (Institute Of Radical Imagination), a think-tank inviting political scientists, economists, lawyers, architects, hackers, activists, artists and cultural producers to share knowledge on a continuous base with the aim of defining and implementing zones of post-capitalism in Europe’s South and the Mediterranean.

Ferran Barenblit is the director of MACBA.

Manuel Borja-Villel is the director of Museo Reina Sofía.

José María Lassalle is a Board member of Cercle d’Economía, Barcelona.

Timothy Morton is a philosopher, writer and lecturer, and Rita Shea Guffey Chair in English at Rice University in Texas, USA. He is a core member of thinkers from Object-Oriented Onthology (OOO), a philosophical movement which proposes a strongly anti-anthropocentric reinterpretation of our relationship to the world, objects and hierarchies. Morton has collaborated with a broad range of artists such as Björk, Olafur Eliasson, Jennifer Walshe, Haim Steinbach and Pharrell Williams, and his most notable works include Realist Magic: Objects, Ontology, Causality (Open Humanities, 2013), Hyperobjects: Philosophy and Ecology After the End of the World (University of Minnesota Press, 2013), The Ecological Thought (Harvard University Press, 2012), Humankind: Solidarity with NonHuman People (Verso, 2017) and Dark Ecology: For a Logic of Future Co-existence (Columbia University Press, 2018).

Nelly Richard is a theorist and essayist, and was founder and director of Revista de Crítica Cultural from 1990 to 2008 and director of the MA in Cultural Studies at the University of Art and Social Sciences (ARCIS) in Santiago de Chile from 2006 to 2013. She has written a broad number of publications in Chile and internationally, for instance: Márgenes e Instituciones. Arte en Chile desde 1973 (Metales pesados, 1986, reissued in 2008); Masculino / Femenino. Prácticas de la diferencia y cultura democrática (Francisco Zegers, 1993); La Insubordinación de los signos (cambio político, transformaciones culturales y poéticas de la crisis) [Cuarto Propio, 1994]; Residuos y metáforas. Ensayos de crítica cultural sobre el Chile de la transición (Cuarto propio, 1998); Fracturas de la memoria. Arte y pensamiento crítico (Siglo XXI, 2007); Feminismo, género y diferencia(s) (Palinodia, 2008); Crítica de la memoria (Universidad Diego Portales, 2010); Crítica y política (Palinodia, 2013) and Diálogos latinoamericanos en las fronteras del arte (Ediciones upd, 2014). Furthermore, she curated the Chilean Pavilion at the 56th Venice Biennale in 2015, under the title Poetics of Dissent: Paz Errázuriz — Lotty Rosenfeld. Since 2019, she has coordinated the force line Politics and Aesthetics of Memory and the homonymous Chair framed inside the Museo Reina Sofía’s Public Activities Department and Study Centre.

Hito Steyerl is an artist and essayist and regarded as one of the foremost contemporary creators in the field of Video Art. Her texts, lectures, videos and installations link philosophical reflection and politics to a critical activism embedded in the world of producing and circulating word and image. She holds a PhD in Philosophy from the University of Vienna and an Honorary Doctorate from the Royal College of Art, London, and is a lecturer at Berlin University. Her work has been on display at different collective shows that include the 55th Venice Biennale (2013), the 13th Istanbul Biennial (2013) and documenta 12, Kassel (2007). In addition to the monographic exhibition Duty-Free Art held in the Museo Reina Sofía in 2015, she has been the subject of numerous solo shows, most notably the 58th Venice Biennale (2019), Artists Space, New York (2015), the KOW Gallery in Berlin (2015), the Van Abbemuseum in Eindhoven and the Institute of Contemporary Arts – ICA, London (2014) and the Art Institute of Chicago (2012). Over 2021, the Centre Pompidou in Paris and the K21 museum in Düsseldorf will be displaying I Will Survive, the most comprehensive retrospective to date on the artist in France and Germany.