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One Work

Mike Kelley: Educational Complex

By John Miller

Mike Kelley’s Educational Complex (1995) presents forgotten spaces as subjective frames for trauma, real or imagined.

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A ‘complex’ can be an architectural configuration, a psychological syndrome or a political apparatus. In this book, John Miller approaches Educational Complex through corresponding lines of enquiry, considering the representation of Kelley’s schools (and his childhood home) as architectural models; popular fantasies associated with false memory syndrome; and the liberal democratic premises underpinning education.

During his lifetime, Mike Kelley worked with a wide range of media, exploring themes as varied as grassroots politics, religious systems and social class. Miller shows that in Educational Complex, Kelley expands this political and aesthetic focus to test the ideological horizon of art as an institution.

This title is part of the One Work book series, which focuses on the artworks that have significantly shaped the way we understand art and its history.

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