High Culture Carles Congost

"High culture", 1996. Carles Congost © The Congosound o Carles Congost, VEGAP, Madrid, 2022.

Curated by Jesús Alcaide, Néstor García Díaz and Víctor Aguado Machuca.

Bogomir Doringer, Chenta Tsai AKA Putochinomaricón, Carles Congost, Ana Laura Aláez, Joan Morey, The Congosound, Magui Dávila, Nayare Soledad Otorongx, Gema Marín Méndez, Manuel Segade, Snap Bitch! X Don’t hit a la negrx (Galaxia, Wat3rmami AKA Donovan Toxic), Espai d’Art Contemporani de Castelló research group (Bartolomé Limón, Rubén Serna and María Sánchez), DIDDCC working group (Andrea Martín, Manuela Muñoz, Clara Neches, Manuel Padín, Natalia de la Piedra and Rita Zamora).

The idea behind the Image Symposium is to provide a space for collective thinking on the theory, practice, semantic openings and contemporary demarcations of visual cultures, taking the form of a forum for debate, a symposium and workshops, and an open call for research projects.

The point of departure for this year’s symposium is the work of a research group at CA2M which has sourced in Manel Clot’s texts a discursive output which has left us, more than anachronisms, reminiscences of the 1990s, like, for instance, underscoring the connections between the concept of club culture and art practice; or inventing and implementing appreciative and operative categories, where none previously existed, for the consideration of new expressive repertoires and new meaningful registers that would become symptomatic of a time and a place. In fact, the title given to this year’s symposium comes from Musée des phrases (2003-2015) by Manel Clot and the image is by Carles Congost, taken in Manel Clot’s studio with the assistance of Daniel Riera; in it one can see a young Fine Art student called Joan Morey.

The symposium is spread over three days with a full programme of conversations, reading sessions, performative lectures and listening sessions, which will help to situate a number of issues concerning club culture but, at once, they will also respond to the demand to expand the field of given representations of subjectivity, of the fluctuation of its value, of the position of desire; of recognizing possibilities of dissidence with regards social distribution or other relationships between the body and temporality.



19 May. Impure Scenifications (1)
12:00–13:30 Research group at Espai d’Art Contemporani de Castelló. Reading session on the exhibition and archive for Hypertronix, by Manel Clot.
16:00–17:00 Magui Dávila: Escribir una session (Writing a Session), DJ session and performative lecture.
17:00–17:30 Manuel Segade: Hacer noche (Making the Night), presentation.
17:30–19:30 Ana Laura Aláez, Joan Morey, Carles Congost and Jesús Alcaide: Un soplo en el corazón (A Heart Murmur), selection of frequencies around Manel Clot.
19:30–20:30 The Congosound, DJ selector.

20 May. Dance this Mess around (2)
12:00–13:30 DIDDCC working group: Party and Protest, expanded reading session.
16:00–16:30 Néstor García Díaz: Dance this Mess Around, presentation.
16:30–18:00 Bogomir Doringer: From I Dance Alone to Dance of Urgency, lecture.
18:00–19:00 Manel Clot: Musée des phrases, video-screening.
19:00–19:30 Gema Marín Méndez: Notas a una/sola voz (Notes in one/single voice), performative lecture.
19:30–20:30 Cute aggression, DJ session.

21 May. Sonic, somatic fictions (3)
12:00–13:30 Shared reading session on More Brilliant that the Sun, by Kodwo Eshun.
16:00–16:30 Víctor Aguado Machuca: “Éxtasis; faktura subjetiva”, presentation.
16:30–17:30 Nayare Soledad Otorongx: Cuerpxs que da pánico soñar (Bodies we don’t dare to imagine), performance.
17:30–19:00 Galaxia, Wat3rmami AKA Donovan Toxic: Snap Bitch! X Don’t hit a la negrx.



Prior enrolment is required to attend the symposium. Attendance at individual sessions may be allowed although priority will be given to persons previously enrolled. We would also ask all persons enrolled to please be punctual. Ten minutes after the beginning of the first session of the afternoon, any remaining places will be given to persons who have turned up for the session without previous enrolment.

Bogomir Doringer’s lecture is in English with simultaneous translation. All morning reading sessions will be held in the Aula, and the afternoon activities in SUI. The audience will be invited to take part after each conversation and at the end of each session and each day’s symposium.

Certificates of attendance will be issued to enrolees who attend 80% of the afternoon’s session. The morning sessions are voluntary and free while places last, but will not be taken into account when issuing certificates of attendance.



Research group at Espai d’Art Contemporani de Castelló. Reading session on the exhibition and archive for Hypertronix, by Manel Clot
12:00-13:30. Aula

Making the research process prior to the curatorship of the symposium visible is to guarantee that the repertoire of references is transparent, and that the names appear with the reading, either because they are cited or because you can recognize yourself as you share pages with them. This reading session, moderated by the research group on “What can I do with the rest of my body” (comprising the curators of the symposium), invites the EACC research group to explore ways of making memory and building archives from lived experiences, related and investigated around the exhibition “Hypertronix, algunes figures de la cultura juvenil” which Manel Clot curated at EACC in 1999.

The EACC research group is made up of Bartolomé Limón, Rubén Serna and María Sánchez, with the collaboration of Carles Àngel Saurí. The “What can I do with the rest of my body” research group at CA2M is made up of Jesús Alcaide, Néstor García Díaz and Víctor Aguado Machuca.

Magui Dávila: “Writing a Session”
16:00-17:00. SUI

DJ session as a montage-narration relational strategy. Part one: arm and disarm the box of records to find contact stories, broken stories, sounds of resistance assimilated as techno. Part two: produce an experimental story from a brown perspective, a reading situated in bodies that overstep sexo-normative, eurocentric logics.

Magui Dávila investigates the field of self-publishing techno music and art practices with Las Lindas Pobres project; she produces the image for the She Makes Noise  festival and is one half of the deleteD_action_sound duo, and also programmes for art spaces and slow dance clubs. Her doctoral research is centred on what she calls brown techno and production for sessions and labels in Madrid like Stardust, Aback, Cassette Club, Daycap and Semántica Records.

Manuel Segade: “Making The Night”, presentation of symposium.
17:00–17:30. SUI

Ana Laura Aláez, Joan Morey, Carles Congost and Jesús Alcaide: “A Heart Murmur”, selection of frequencies around Manel Clot.
17:30-19:30. SUI

In the mid-1990s Manel Clot’s curatorial language was inflected by a number of references to club culture which were underpinned by his interest in taking art production toward more fragile interstices, under construction, which were witnessing aesthetic, discursive and experiential transformations and new relational strategies that would give rise to other possible forms of institutionality. Projects such as “Club (arts & lounge)”, “Espais de desig”, “Inter/zona” and “Hypertronix” wove a whole weft of professional bonds and affective correspondences that will be explored by this roundtable, moderated by Jesús Alcaide, with Ana Laura Aláez, Joan Morey and Carles Congost; an impure scenification on the ideas, gestures and affects of Manel Clot, an active zone of memory and reception.

Ana Laura Aláez (Bilbao, 1964) belongs to the (post-punk, no future) generation which was heavily marked by a complete rejection of culture. From her earliest works, Ana Laura gave an account of a process of assimilation of issues posed by the foregoing generation, the so-called New Basque Sculpture, while at once introducing corrective elements associated with gender perspective based on the utilization of materials and process-based strategies generally not included in conventional approaches to sculpture.

Joan Morey (Mallorca, 1972) develops a body of work mainly exploring the language of performance, though adopting various means and supports (from live actions and their audiovisual registers to sound pieces, video, installation and graphic work), with issues related with role play, power devices and control over the body.

In his work Carles Congost (Girona, 1970) situates issues related with the fiction of subjectivity and codes of behaviour, adopting and repurposing stereotypical symbols of visual culture, questioning the dynamics and mechanisms of authorship and of creative processes; he does so from photography, video, drawing and, since the mid-1990s, through music composition and production under the name of The Congosound.

The Congosound, DJ selector
1930-20:30. SUI

This selection, based on the memory and visit to Manel Clot’s club in Granollers, is one of many possible which Carles Congost could have made from their shared musical memory; and also of those songs, idols, fictions and scenes shown in all their ambiguity and their art of falling apart. With special thanks to Anna Clot i Garrell.


DIDDCC working group: “Party and Protest”, expanded reading session
12:00-13:30. Aula

The focus of interest of this session is the pooling and sharing of the book “DiY Culture: Party and Protest in Nineties’ Britain” (ed. George McKay, 1998; not translated into Spanish), and more specifically the chapters, “Dangerous dancing and disco riots: the northern warehouse parties” (pp. 208-27) and, “Repetitive beats: free parties and the politics of contemporary DIY dance culture in Britain” (pp. 243-68), by Drew Hemment and by Hillegonda Rietveld respectively, as well as the shared reading with our own context, which may perhaps hamper the desires to interpret these texts literally.

CA2M’s Department of Investigation, Data, Documentation, Questioning and Causality (DIDDCC) is an ephemeral and intermittent structure directed by Sergio Rubira, conceived as a space for collaborative study and research into the museum institution and what CA2M means with this word. It is made up of members converging from different fields associated with contemporary art, and with highly diverse trajectories and backgrounds; this session will be guided by Andrea Martín, Manuela Muñoz, Clara Neches, Manuel Padín, Natalia de la Piedra and Rita Zamora.

Néstor García Díaz: “Dance this mess around”, presentation.
16:00-16:30. SUI

Bogomir Doringer: From “I Dance Alone” to “Dance of Urgency”
16:30 -18:00. SUI

This conversation is centred on the “I Dance Alone” project which takes a bird’s-eye view—or, as it is often called, a divine perspective—of dancefloors. The basic premise is that, seen in that light, crowds of anonymous bodies dancing as a form of political protest are as if they were dark clouds announcing storms or affording glimpses of times of change and social emergencies to come. The conversation connects this project with “Dance of Urgency”, a concept used to focus on and think about dances that, facing the empowerment of individuals and communities, arise in times of personal and collective crises.

Bogomir Doringer (1983) is a Serbian-Dutch artist, researcher and curator, currently working on his doctoral research addressing the political and social dynamics that come into being in club dance music culture on a collective and individual level. Twice nominated to represent Serbia at the Venice Biennale with the “Hospitality” project; he is also curator and head of education and research at Nxt Museum in Amsterdam.

Manel Clot: “Musée des phrases” (2003-2015), video-screening. Created for the réserVoir exhibition at La Capella (2015).
18:00-19:00. SUI

Following years of compiling and embodying the phrases, quotations and ideas of others, jotted down on bits of paper, on 23 October 2003 it dawned on Manel Clot that over the passing of time he had created an archive with this simple, personal act. That he had given body to a “museum of phrases”, a timeless and inexhaustible body in which a large part of his emotional experiential interests associated with contemporary art and theory can be expansively and chaotically found. We can see in it a way of thinking and feeling art practice closely linked to a way of thinking and feeling reality, a working methodology based on affective connections and interpersonal structures.

Gema Marín Méndez: “Notes in one/single voice”
19:00-19:30. SUI

An embodied reading of a text that speaks to the absence of voice, of the processes of silencing of certain bodies that inhabit the dancefloor and the (lived) experiences that cut across it. The voice is presented as the main actor which, in dialogue with the body and the context of club culture, undergoes mutations, alterations, fragmentations, until it expels itself from the body and frees itself from all the violence that cuts through it. From the interaction between voices, bodies and partying, and how these choreographies unfold, contingent upon the different temporalities associated with trauma and pleasure, obedience and defiance: it is about giving voice to all this.

Gema Marín Méndez is an architect, researcher and visual artist. She combines her architectural practice with curatorial and artistic research; and also with the production of independent editorial projects. Her works focus on reflection and the intersection of situated feminisms and dissident queer politics in visual culture.

Chenta Tsai AKA Putochinomaricón, DJ session
19:30-20:30. SUI

Chenta Tsai (Taipei, 1990) is an architect, musician, model and activist. Their work is inflected by their condition as the child of Taiwanese immigrants and by their experience as a militant for LGTBIQA rights. Putochinomaricón is the moniker they use to defend these rights, not so much from the desire or viewpoint of personal recognition or identity, but as a stance-taking from a position of enunciation, of knowledge and of resistance, and as an art practice with which to occupy places traditionally denied to people sharing their same condition.


Reading session and shared listening on “More Brilliant Than The Sun”, by Kodwo Eshun
12:00-13:30. Aula

Rethinking Black electro music from sci-fi, recovering the potential of the imaginary, building meaning from outside the discourse, divesting cultural studies of their descriptivist dominance, stopping theory from trying to save art from itself, and making what is figurally possible physically possible: this and much more is dealt with in “More Brilliant Than The Sun: Adventures In Sonic Fiction” (1998) by Kodwo Eshun, a book that is taken as the core axis of this reading and listening session guided by the symposium curators.

Víctor Aguado Machuca: “Éxtasis; faktura subjetiva”, presentation.
16:00-16:30. SUI

Nayare Soledad Otorongx: “Bodies we don’t dare to imagine”, performance.
16:30-17:30. SUI

“Bodies we don’t dare to imagine” is a research project that cuts across art, transvestism, poetry and noise, at times more individual, at times more collective, bringing together transvested bodies in order to explore and discover the epistemological possibilities produced by the encounter, affect, desire, the gaze and listening between them; possibilities which are not shaped by the complacent cis gaze but by other forms of narrating that eschew tear-jerking, victimizing, extractivist narratives.

From their own practice or participating in collective projects that combine DJing, voguing and transvestism, Nayare Soledad Otorongx explores the intersections between desire, eroticism and pleasure, and, more specifically, the possibilities of kissing, the boundaries between the skin and mouth and how they can be breached, or how to arrive at t4t (trans for trans), if that were in fact a possibility.

Galaxia, Wat3rmami AKA Donovan Toxic: Snap Bitch! X Don’t hit a la negrx
17:30-19:00. SUI

Snap Bitch! is a celebration of racialized, queer, migrant, non-normative bodies through a performance that mixes music and dance. Twerking, rapping, chanting, voguing, catwalking, posing to resist, to give vent to anger, to re-appropriate space and to take pleasure, to celebrate those bodies and their presence.

Don’t hit a la negrx is a festive act of resistance self-run by sexual and gender dissident bodies; Black, Afro-diasporic, Indian-descendent, Cimarron, migrant bodies. They are bound together by music, pleasure and twerking; they resist pleasurably. The backdrops of these parties are redistributed among racialized, migrant, queer, trans, refugee and sexual-worker bodies.

Galaxia (Lima, 1991) is a migrant artist who organizes events, currently working on various art residency projects and creating events and activities to promote Ballroom and other kinds of performing arts in conjunction with the racialized community in Spain under the name of Snap Bitch!

Wat3rmami AKA Donovan Toxic is a transvestite rapper, 2000 vintage, African masculinity and a big fan of Real Madrid CF; aesthetic and gender-terrorist lesbianism, international sexual worker with the Don’t hit a la negrx team, LSS on the Spanish Ballroom scene and holder of 2 Body Grandprizes.


See the resolution of the call for the 27th Image Symposium here.

Activity type
Image Symposium
Target audience
Anyone interested
From 12:00 to 20:30
19, 20 and 21 May
Event Date
Event Date
Event Date
Enrolment free

In order to attend the sessions, prior registration is required. Limited capacity.

More information and contact