The Future is a Collective Project
Waxing gibbous moon under Sagittarius (Wednesday 2 August)
This is a participatory research group, akin to a reading group but not limited to texts. It is grounded in the question: Are we carrying the right tools to shape the future we want and need?
This session draws from the research of Wigan-based artist, Anna FC Smith, who is exploring the potency of karaoke as a space of jovial and unmediated humanity. Her current research in reference to this is on Greek Rebetiko music and its place as a popular space of expression and revellry within Greek society. We will be reading an essay by Yiannis Zaimakis called ‘Bawdy Songs and Virtuous Politics’ (2009) and listening to some Rebetiko.
Anna FC Smith’s (born and based in Wigan) research-based practice is focussed on unsettling received wisdom and accepted tropes. Her work in embroidery, drawing, sculpture, sound and video is derived from extensive research into her subject matter. She depicts aspects of contemporary culture where communality, protest and ritual prevail, revealing what exists beyond the expected. Her research often includes gathering knowledge on contemporary folk customs through dialogue with their communities. As part of her recent residency and exhibition with WASPS in Glasgow she worked with ex-workers from the former Will’s cigarette factory in the city to explore the cultural and symbolic impact of tobacco. Smith uses her practice as a process through which to peer beneath what is often deemed to be ‘low’ culture and draw out disregarded instances of persistent folk traditions and communality.
The collaboratively generated discussion from each ‘The Future is a Collective Project’ session will feed into an upcoming exhibition, ‘Our House of Common Weeds’ at Res. The exhibition will consist of new work by five artists: Verity Birt, Fourthland, Carl Gent, Anna FC Smith, Andrea Williamson. Each of the artists will bring their research and ideas to the sessions to enable a wider collaboration in the development of their work.
‘The Future is a Collective Project’ began meeting in 2016 with the aim of collectively viewing, reading, talking and thinking about artworks/texts/books/films/projects to explore the following:
// Marginalised ideas and practices of the past being essential considerations in thinking about the future;
// The future as a tool of fiction for asserting our desires and articulating what is missing or ignored in the present;
// The possibilities of future thinking from the position of ‘the other’
In the interest of moving outside of the Western and patriarchal construction of clock time and its characterisations of past, present and future, meetings will be scheduled according to the lunar calendar. We will meet every fortnight at Res. in Deptford.
‘The Future is a Collective Project’ and ‘Our House of Common’ Weeds are projects by curator, Nathalie Boobis. All participants will be credited as researchers in her work and any participant that wishes to use the sessions for their own research is encouraged to do so.
If you haven’t already, please email firstname.lastname@example.org to express your interest in attending in order to get an idea of numbers and be added to the mailing list.
Image: Yiorgos “Souliaris” (third from the left) with his company in a local den.