Pascal Schwaighofer

Visual Artist
Postdoctoral Fellow at Franklin University Switzerland
Ph.D. in Comparative Literature, Cornell University
Mellon Graduate Fellow, Society for the Humanities, Cornell University (2022-23)

Tulipmania, 2017

Authors: Pascal Schwaighofer, Jan Verwoert

Editor: Le Foyer
Publisher: Edition Fink
Pages 128
ISBN-13: 978-3-03746-194-5

Within the framework of the multi-part project “Economimesis”, Pascal Schwaighofer has been dealing since 2013 with the links between philosophical-aesthetic concepts, economic cycles and the monetary value of beauty, following Jacques Derrid’s essay of the same name from 1975. He condenses this artistic and theoretical research in the thematic and motivic focus on the tulip, which Immanuel Kant described as the aesthetic paradigm of pure beauty in “Kritik der Urteilskraft” [Critique of Judgement] (1790). In the Netherlands, it had already become the subject of economic speculation and an actual tulip mania in the 17th century, which is regarded as the first well-documented financial bubble.
Under the title “Tulipmania”, Pascal Schwaighofer discussed his research together with Jan Verwoert at the discussion and exhibition platform Le Foyer in July 2014. Starting from the contradiction between abstract economies and concrete realities, the Dutch Tulipmania was linked to other historical and contemporary speculative dynamics.
“Tulipmania” is the second publication by Pascal Schwaighofer in the publishing house and is an attempt to put into writing and possibly visualize a fundamentally ephemeral format of conversation that is accompanied by a more precise and targeted continuation of thoughts. As an extension of the linguistic level, the extensive image section is based on the visual material shown during the conversation, but also includes motifs that only emerged during the discussion. The accumulation and superimposition of images loosely traces the dialogically fueled condensation and spinning on of concrete examples, theoretical concepts and speculative ideas, but at the same time develops its own dynamic.