Berlin, 27 Jun. The Sacred Conspiracy at Miss Read Book Fair

June 27th, 2015

6:00 pm
Akademie der Künste, Berlin
Triple Canopy


Triple Canopy celebrates the publication of Headless, a murder-mystery by the elusive author K. D., with a reading and a rumination on offshore finance and human sacrifice.

Headless is a delirious romp through the world of offshore finance, conducted by a British ghostwriter who seems to have uncovered a sacrifice-obsessed, Bataille-inspired secret society of global economic elites who will do anything to maintain their power. The ghostwriter, John Barlow, is hired by the Swedish conceptualist artist duo Goldin+Senneby to investigate Headless, an offshore firm registered in the Bahamas. Barlow happily agrees to write up his investigation as a mystery novel, to be published under the name K. D. But soon Barlow is implicated in the decapitation of a police officer in Nassau, and his novel becomes a matter of life and death. The more he struggles to grasp the plot, the further he slips into the dark world of covert capitalism.

Artist Hito Steyerl, poet Shane Anderson, philosopher Matteo Pasquinelli, and artist Caitlin Berrigan will read from Headless and discuss the mystery genre, the difficulties of ghostwriting (and of employing ghostwriters), the free rein of capital, narratives of financial crises and credit economies, Georges Bataille’s formulation of sovereignty, the concept of xenospace, and the pleasures of fiction that insistently impinges on reality.


  • Shane Anderson is the author of Soft Passer (Mindmade Books) and Études des Gottnarrenmaschinen (Broken Dimanche Press). Among other places, his poems and translations can be found in 6×6, Asymptote, Edit, Plinth, Natalie Czech’s Il Pleut series and Matthew Barney’s River of Fundament(Skira Rizzoli). He lives in Berlin.
  • Matteo Pasquinelli is a philosopher. He wrote the book Animal Spirits: A Bestiary of the Commons (2008) and edited the anthologies The Algorithms of Capital (2014) and Alleys of Your Mind: Augmented Intelligence and its Traumas(forthcoming for Meson Press). In 2012 he wrote, with Wietske Maas, “The Manifesto of Urban Cannibalism.” He frequently teaches and lectures about the intersection of political philosophy and media theory at universities and art institutions.
  • Hito Steyerl is a filmmaker and writer. She teaches New Media Art at University of Arts Berlin and has participated in the Venice Biennale, Documenta 12, the Shanghai Biennial, and Rotterdam Film Festival. An exhibition surveying her work was recently held at Artists Space in New York.
  • Caitlin Berrigan is an artist who works across performance, sculpture, text, new media and public interventions to articulate the intimate and uncanny dimensions of power and politics. Her work includes Spectrum of Inevitable Violence, a large-scale class-warfare food fight, and Lessons in Capitalism, which observes the language of finance and money through the eyes of children. Forthcoming work includes the artist book and exhibition Unfinished State, which deals with speculative fictions and real estate in Berlin and Beirut and will be published by Archive Books. She is a 2015–17 Schloss Solitude Fellow and teaches new media practice at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts.

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