Mathemes of Re-Association

MATHEMES OF RE-ASSOCIATION

Mathemes of Re-association is a platform by Grupa Spomenik/Monument Group where artists, theorists, and activists jointly facilitate public discussions of the ways in which the ideology of reconciliation through forensic science works to depoliticize genocide (with the genocide in Srebrenica as an initial departure point).

Mathemes of Re-association strives to generate a public space where new forms of political subjectivity will be allowed to emerge through efforts to associate forensic data analysis with the language of politics proper; where the naturalized categories of ethnoreligious identity may begin to be destabilized; and where the unidentifiable, unethnifiable, and therefore indivisible remainder of genocide as bones in the ossuary—resisting and refusing ideological cooptation by the bureaucratic/scientific/religious alliance—may be attributed agency.

Researchers

Grupa Spomenik/Monument Group:

  • Damir Arsenijević
  • Ana Bezić
  • Pavle Levi
  • Branimir Stojanović
  • Milica Tomić
  • with guest Vanessa Vasić-Janeković

"Towards the Mathemes of Genocide", 2009

1 Document Where the Genocide Was final 1 page

Box used during lecture, labeled “Suchey-Brooks Male Age Determination System.” Podrinje Identification Project, lecture by Dragana Vučetić, senior forensic anthropologist at the International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Tuzla. Lecture Room No. 2 Editorial board of the newspaper Mathemes of Re-association Grupa Spomenik, Belgrade, October 2008 Photo: Milica Tomić.

Box used during lecture, labeled “Suchey-Brooks Male Age Determination System.” Podrinje Identification Project, lecture by Dragana Vučetić, senior forensic anthropologist at the International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Tuzla.
Lecture Room No. 2, Editorial board of the newspaper Mathemes of Re-association Grupa Spomenik, Belgrade, October 2008 Photo: Milica Tomić.

The newspaper Mathemes of Re-association at the exhibition: Where Everything is Yet to Happen, 2nd Chapter: “Exposures.” Curators: Ivana Bago and Antonia Majača, DeLVe, Zagreb. SpaPort Biennale, Banja Luka, Bosnia and Herzegovina, 2010. Photo: Staša Tomić.

The newspaper Mathemes of Re-association at the exhibition: Where Everything is Yet to Happen, 2nd Chapter: “Exposures.”
Curators: Ivana Bago and Antonia Majača, DeLVe, Zagreb.
SpaPort Biennale, Banja Luka, Bosnia and Herzegovina, 2010.
Photo: Staša Tomić.

Remains of a victim of the Srebrenica genocide that were exhumed from mass graves for identification, Podrinje Identification Project, International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Lukovac, 2008. Photo: Milica Tomić.

Remains of a victim of the Srebrenica genocide that were exhumed from mass graves for identification, Podrinje Identification Project, International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Lukovac, 2008. Photo: Milica Tomić.

Plastic bag with a selection of the sample analyzed by the forensic expert assigned to the case. International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Tuzla, 2008. Photo: Milica Tomić.

Plastic bag with a selection of the sample analyzed by the forensic expert assigned to the case. International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Tuzla, 2008.
Photo: Milica Tomić.

Branimir Stojanović presenting the newspaper Mathemes of Re-association at the exhibition Where Everything is Yet to Happen, 2nd Chapter: “Exposures.” Curators: Ivana Bago and Antonia Majača, DeLVe, Zagreb.  SpaPort Biennale, Banja Luka, Bosnia and Herzegovina, 2010. Photo: Staša Tomić.

Branimir Stojanović presenting the newspaper Mathemes of Re-association at the exhibition Where Everything is Yet to Happen, 2nd Chapter: “Exposures.” Curators: Ivana Bago and Antonia Majača, DeLVe, Zagreb. SpaPort Biennale, Banja Luka, Bosnia and Herzegovina, 2010. Photo: Staša Tomić.

Sample selection and DNA testing. DNA forensic expert of the ICMP identifying the remains of a victim of the Srebrenica genocide, International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Sarajevo, 2008. Photo: Milica Tomić.

Sample selection and DNA testing. DNA forensic expert of the ICMP identifying the remains of a victim of the Srebrenica genocide, International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Sarajevo, 2008. Photo: Milica Tomić.

Sample selection and DNA testing. DNA forensic expert of the ICMP identifying the remains of a victim of the Srebrenica genocide, International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Sarajevo, 2008. Photo: Milica Tomić.

Sample selection and DNA testing. DNA forensic expert of the ICMP identifying the remains of a victim of the Srebrenica genocide, International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Sarajevo, 2008. Photo: Milica Tomić.

2 Document MR

Lecture Room No. 2 Editorial board of the newspaper Mathemes of Re-association Grupa Spomenik, Belgrade, October 2008 Photo: Milica Lopičić.

Lecture Room No. 2
Editorial board of the newspaper Mathemes of Re-association
Grupa Spomenik, Belgrade, October 2008
Photo: Milica Lopičić.

Pythagorean Lecture: the Irreducible Surplus Matter

The Srebrenica genocide has become a complex object constructed by science, religion, and trauma administration; by the advanced forensic apparatus of re-association of the mortal remains of the executed. Can we make a matheme of the Srebrenica genocide that is going to be legible a hundred years from now? Can we convey knowledge without historicization, images, lab visits, or DNA data processed by the International Commission on Missing Persons? The Yugoslav wars were an act of negation. How do we articulate an affirmative, emancipatory politics out of an entropy-inducing negativity?

Grupa Spomenik’s performance Pythagorean Lecture: the Irreducible Surplus Matter is an intervention into these “matter-of-fact” forensics, which, by reducing victims’ bodily remains to re-associated evidence and assigning them an ethnic identity, ultimately reproduce the ideology of genocide. But not all the remains yield to DNA identification. The performance takes the form of an acousmatheme, a specific form of knowledge transmission devised by the Pythagoreans. Positioning the lecturer behind a curtain determines the dynamics of a Pythagorean lecture with the acousmatic voice as the only source of information and representation. The acousmatic voice brings to the fore exactly that remaining, irreducible surplus matter that refuses to be forensified.

Grupa Spomenik (Damir Arsenijević, Ana Bezić, Pavle Levi, Jelena Petrović, Branimir Stojanović, Milica Tomić) with DeLVe (Ivana Bago and Antonia Majača) and Branislav Jakovljević

Tuzla / Ljubljana / Rijeka / Belgrade / San Francisco / Berlin / Durham, 2008–14

The Unperformable: Pythagorean Lecture, performance, 2009, Grupa Spomenik (Damir Arsenijević, Ana Bezić, Pavle Levi, Jasmina Husanović, Branimir Stojanović, Milica Tomić, with guest Branislav Jakovljević), Zagreb, 2009. Photo: Vladimir Jerić.

The Unperformable: Pythagorean Lecture, performance, 2009, Grupa Spomenik (Damir Arsenijević, Ana Bezić, Pavle Levi, Jasmina Husanović, Branimir Stojanović, Milica Tomić, with guest Branislav Jakovljević), Zagreb, 2009. Photo: Vladimir Jerić.

The Unperformable: Pythagorean Lecture, performance, 2009, Grupa Spomenik (Damir Arsenijević, Ana Bezić, Pavle Levi, Jasmina Husanović, Branimir Stojanović, Milica Tomić, with guest Branislav Jakovljević), Zagreb, 2009. Photo: Vladimir Jerić.

The Unperformable: Pythagorean Lecture, performance, 2009, Grupa Spomenik (Damir Arsenijević, Ana Bezić, Pavle Levi, Jasmina Husanović, Branimir Stojanović, Milica Tomić, with guest Branislav Jakovljević), Zagreb, 2009. Photo: Vladimir Jerić.

Towards a Matheme of Genocide evolved through an autodidactic session by Grupa Spomenik discussing the possibility of mathematizing genocide, held on March 2009 in Belgrade.

Towards a Matheme of Genocide evolved through an autodidactic session by Grupa Spomenik discussing the possibility of mathematizing genocide, held on March 2009 in Belgrade.

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