A three-day seminar with Jalal Toufic

20 - 22 October, 16:00 - 20:00 

Venue: Temporary Gallery, Mauritiuswall 35, 50676 Cologne


The Academy of the Arts of the World, Cologne, is proud to welcome thinker and video maker Jalal Toufic for a three-day seminar.

The seminar will tackle some of the characteristics of the condition of (un)death: labyrinthine time and space; the turning of the metaphorical into the literal; unpredictable immobilizations, ones that reveal the end(less) result of the occasional normal coming to a stop of the living to be still a variety of movement, motion-less-ness; and an unreality that behaves in a cinematic manner, with the consequence that, notwithstanding Serge Daney’s sweeping statement that “nothing any longer happens to humans; it is to the image that everything happens,” events still happen to the (un)dead, who sometimes asks himself or herself: “Am I in a film?”

A substantial part of the seminar will draw extensively on Jalal Toufic’s book "Vampires: An Uneasy Essay on the Undead in Film", but participants are certainly encouraged to contribute through questions and remarks. Excerpts from films will be screened during the seminar, including Resnais/Robbe-Grillet’s Last Year at Marienbad (1961), Herzog’s Nosferatu the Vampyre (1979), Coppola’s Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992), Resnais/Duras’ Hiroshima Mon Amour (1959), and Mizoguchi’s Ugetsu (1953). 

The seminar will take place in English. Participation is open to all. Please register at reservation[at]academycologne[dot]org

Jalal Toufic is a thinker and a mortal to death. He was born in 1962 in Beirut or Baghdad and died before dying in 1989 in Evanston, Illinois. The second edition of his book Forthcoming was published by e-flux journal-Sternberg Press in April 2014. His books, many of which were published by Forthcoming Books, are available for download as PDF files at his website: He was most recently a participant in the Sharjah Biennial 11, the 9th Shanghai Biennale, and dOCUMENTA (13). In 2011, he was a guest of the Artists-in-Berlin Program of the DAAD.