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The audio installation by goldin+senneby, ‘The Decapitation of Money‘, which includes a recording of a lecture I gave in a Parisian forest in 2010, is appearing in a new exhibition space in Cairo called ‘Beirut‘.  The exhibition, which takes its name from Michael Taussig’s book, ‘The Magic of the State‘, is on two separate sites, Beirut in Cairo (3 March – 6 April) and the Lisson Gallery in London (27 March – 4 May).

The various contributors are exploring different aspects of the way that the modern, allegedly rational structures of the state remain imbued with occult sensibilities and elements of ‘magic’.  In the case of the Decapitation of Money, the magic in question is imbricated into the financial system as it continually transforms itself to occupy new places, systems and curcumstances.

There is a slight irony that the show should in part be at the Lisson.  As a young, hot-headed art history student in the late 1980s, I managed to get into a row with its owner, Nicholas Logsdail, and was asked to leave the premises.  I clearly remember storming out of the building in a towering rage, though I have no idea what the argument was about.  I shall of course be going to the London part of the exhibition, but I’ll be better behaved this time.  Probably….

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