Le Figaro, Le Futurisme (1909)

You may have forgotten

that our Twentieth Century started here






02 2009 Franco Berardi aka Bifo


1. We want to sing of the danger of love, the daily creation of a sweet energy that is never dispersed.

2. The essential elements of our poetry will be irony, tenderness and rebellion.

3. Ideology and advertising have exalted the permanent mobilisation of the productive and nervous energies of humankind towards profit and war. We want to exalt tenderness, sleep and ecstasy, the frugality of needs and the pleasure of the senses.

4. We declare that the splendor of the world has been enriched by a new beauty: the beauty of autonomy. Each to her own rhythm; nobody must be constrained to march on a uniform pace. Cars have lost their allure of rarity and above all they can no longer perform the task they were conceived for: speed has slowed down. Cars are immobile like stupid slumbering tortoises in the city traffic. Only slowness is fast.

5. We want to sing of the men and the women who caress one another to know one another and the world better.

6. The poet must expend herself with warmth and prodigality to increase the power of collective intelligence and reduce the time of wage labour.

7. Beauty exists only in autonomy. No work that fails to express the intelligence of the possible can be a masterpiece. Poetry is a bridge cast over the abyss of nothingness to allow the sharing of different imaginations and to free singularities.

8. We are on the extreme promontory of the centuries… We must look behind to remember the abyss of violence and horror that military aggressiveness and nationalist ignorance is capable of conjuring up at any moment in time. We have lived in the stagnant time of religion for too long. Omnipresent and eternal speed is already behind us, in the Internet, so we can forget its syncopated rhymes and find our singular rhythm.

9. We want to ridicule the idiots who spread the discourse of war: the fanatics of competition, the fanatics of the bearded gods who incite massacres, the fanatics terrorised by the disarming femininity blossoming in all of us.

10. We demand that art turns into a life-changing force. We seek to abolish the separation between poetry and mass communication, to reclaim the power of media from the merchants and return it to the poets and the sages.

11. We will sing of the great crowds who can finally free themselves from the slavery of wage labour and through solidarity revolt against exploitation. We will sing of the infinite web of knowledge and invention, the immaterial technology that frees us from physical hardship. We will sing of the rebellious cognitariat who is in touch with her own body. We will sing to the infinity of the present and abandon the illusion of a future.




Interminable Autonomy: Bifo’s Symptomatologies of the Present

Michael Goddard

With creativity and desire hijacked so effectively by work, spectacle and cyberspace what, asks Franco ‘Bifo’ Berardi
– across three books published in English this year – has become of autonomy today? In this extended review,
Michael Goddard traces the development of Bifo’s ‘joyful pessimism’ in the face of an epidemic of emotional and political atrophy.



An Introduction to the  film Il Trasloco by Bifo

A two part conversation between McKenzie Wark and Bifo

Living with viruses.

Creativity is the only human contribution to the Universal.
The continuum shift (the author refers to) is perhaps gradual acceptance of industry’s
failure at its collectivisation – and like that other Universal force energy it is returning
to its own wellspring undiminished. Subjectivity. Human Autonomy.

Networks as another truly magnificent Natural order, unnaturally inorganic
in their digitally synthesised form,  have been inefficiently colonised by Business – to no other end than empowerment,
enrichment and progressive the attempted enslavement of Subjectivity.

I’m on the side of Subjectivity finding it’s own way to expression – in it’s Time. Human Time. Without charismatic leadership and ‘Futurist’ rhetoric. 

What were McLuhan’s last words – First we shape our  tools and then our tools shape us. 

Art has never not been. It always makes the best of it’s own human tools. And only in painstakingly engineered manifestations is it commodified.

I’m also on the side of Bifo.
Subjectivity – Human Autonomy – has a digital virus and is ailing.

What to do? Duck and cover? Lock and load.



I wrote the above initially as an  response ‘letter’ to a very particular article put in front of me by a colleague – one celebrating the arrival of a highly spruked new technology that was destined to ‘save’ us all . I resented the presumption (American) of both the writer and the technology.  I was  at the time deeply steeped in the radical optimism of Bifo’s Post Futurism and the proven viability of the Wenger ‘s Community of Practice proposals endorsed by Jimmy Whales.

That’s right Comrade I really believe I/we are all the tools of ART not vice e versa and communities of practice are nodes in it’s network and  this networks scale is defined by human sentience not by fucking flags. Where does ART fit into the cosmos.Humanity was once a tool to a greater work but sometime Post Raphelite it got turned into a commodity  – But that’s another STORY …

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