THE DESTITUENT LAB
The question of destituent practice is posed as a framework for exploring approaches to creative work, as well as contextual, relational and situational methods.
Following Giorgio Agamben’s notion of destituent power, as grounded in acts of withdrawal, exit or evacuation, and a sensibility of non-work (or the interrupted project), we’re interested to reflect upon in what ways the destituent may lend itself to conceptualizing new approaches to practice. We invite artists, theorists, researchers and project initiatiors to take part in the laboratory through both private and public events.
To explore these topics, the project is organized around a series of creative workshops, or Destituent Labs, where a working group of participating artists and researchers collaborate on investigating, mapping, testing or manifesting the destituent. This includes theoretical, performative and material processes, as well as sited investigations, which can lead to various manifestations or residues. Through such gatherings and processes, we hope to reflect upon the destituent as a power and poetics that can support new creative efforts and imaginaries.
Through an initiative that opens the circle of belonging, a series of public talks will take place throughout the 2-week lab, inviting artists, researchers and theorists to place their research into dialogue with the notion of the destituent. We attempt to give new meaning to existent practices, integrating them within a community that aggregates around strategies of resistance without becoming homogenous, but rather porous, through dialogue, walks and constant interaction with the local landscape.
ANCA BENERA & ARNOLD ESTEFAN
MARIA GARCIA RUIZ
ANCA BENERA & ARNOLD ESTEFAN are collaborators who have worked together since 2011, currently based in Vienna and Bucharest. Their work in installation, video and performance uses research-based methodologies to reveal the invisible patterns that lie behind certain historical, social, or geopolitical narratives. Their recent work investigates the phenomenon of man-made landscapes around the world, where the making and marking of landscape (as a form of spatial modification) goes hand in hand with heightened state violence and the overexploitation of resources.
BRANDON LABELLE is an artist, writer and theorist working with sound culture, voice, and questions of agency. Guided by situated and collaborative methodologies, he develops and presents artistic projects and performances within a range of international contexts, mostly working in public and with others. This leads to performative installations, poetic theater, storytelling, and research actions aimed at forms of experimental community making, as well as extra-institutional initiatives, including The Listening Biennial and Academy (2021-ongoing). From gestures of intimacy and listening to critical festivity and experimental pedagogy, his practice aligns itself with a politics and poetics of radical hospitality.
DANIELA CUSTRIN (b.1997) holds a BA in Literature and Linguistic Research and a Master degree from Visual Culture department at the Center of Excellence in Image Studies – with a thesis titled ‘’The Vitruvian Butterfly’’ which followed the decentering of humans in contemporary ecological art discourses. Among her interests are positive relations instead of antagonistic ones in insects and people, ways of recovering the role of women in scientific/theoretical discourses, cuteness and adorability as new aesthetic categories and
gentle performative practices. She attempts to find new ways of writing and speaking, and dreams of creating a Z space, in which people of her generation can freely write personal speculative theory.
YOTA IOANNIDOU (b. 1976) is an artist and researcher working in Athens. Her work focuses on storytelling-performance and the creation of research and performing groups. In her latest projects, Ioannidou explores the performative and dramaturgical aspects that emerge during the formation of documents in historical, political, cultural and institutional contexts, emphasising the ideological apparatus of classification itself.Her work has been presented at When the Present is History, Museum of Contemporary art, Thessaloniki (2021) and Depo, Istanbul (2019); I’ ll open the door straight, dead straight into the fire, State of Concept, Athens and Gallery Nova, Zagreb (2019); A case of perpetual no, State of Concept, Athens (2018); ‘The kids want communism’ — Notes on division, ΜΟΒΥ Bat Yam, Ιsrael (2017); No need for references, WUK, Vienna, (2015), 3rd and 4th Athens Biennale, inter alia.Her work has been presented in “The Kids Want Communism” – Bat Yam, Israel (2017), “No need for references”, WUK, Vienna, (2015), the 3rd and 4th Athens biennale a.o.
MARIA GARCIA RUIZ is visual artist and independent researcher investigating the physical and symbolic production of territory through the articulation of hybrid narratives between image, writing and action. She holds a degree in Architecture, Master’s Degree in Research in Art and Design and is a PhD candidate in Philosophy at the Universitat Autónoma of Barcelona, where she is conducting research into the architectures of moving bodies.Artist in residence in Hangar, Barcelone (2022-2024). In 2020 she developed the project Camps, displacements of bodies at the limits of form thanks to the V Grant of Artistic Research Fundació Banc Sabadell – Hangar. Participant in the core group of artists and curators convened by Hans D. Christ and Iris Dressler for the Bergen Assembly 2019. She was curator, together with artist Pedro G. Romero, of the exhibition Machines for Living. Flamenco and Architecture in the Occupation and Vacating of Spaces and co-author of the book of the same name (Puente Editores, 2020). García was coordinator of the research platform Topographies of Urban Discrepancy at La Virreina LAB in Barcelona (2016-2017) and researcher in residence at the Reina Sofia Museum in Madrid (2015-2016). Her artistic work has been exhibited at museums such as Secession in Vienna, Kunstverein in Stuttgart, MUSAC in León, Fabra i Coats in Barcelona, and TEA in Tenerife, among others.
LISE SKOU’s artistic praxis is often based on collaborative and inter-disciplinary projects with poltical economy and societal topics at its core. In her engagement with different contemporary socio-cultural, economic and ecologic issues, her artistic approach and engagement connect with anthropological and discursive ones. General characteristics of her projects are the research into and critical questionings of the (biopolitical) life forms of capitalistic systems and the creative development and proposal of alternative models.
Aria Spinelli is an independent curator and postdoctoral researcher at the University of Amsterdam. Her PhD (Loughborough University, U.K. 2020) has analyzed the ways in which curatorial practice is related to social imagination and performativity. Her main area of research investigates the relationships among art, activism, and political theory. She holds a bachelor’s from the University of Rome La Sapienza in contemporary art history, and a master’s degree from the NABA – New Academy of Fine Arts in Milan in visual arts and curatorial studies. A founding member of the artistic and curatorial collective Radical Intention, she was an associate researcher and member of the curatorial team of The Independent project at the MAXXI (Museum of the XXI Century for art, Rome) from 2018 until 2020. Between 2015 and 2020 she was an external curator at the Pistoletto Foundation (Biella) and BOZAR, Center for Fine Arts (Brussels). She has published many articles and is the editor of the publication Shaping Desired Futures (NERO, 2018). Between 2009 and 2012 she was curator at the Isola Art Center (Milan).
Radio Papesse is an audio archive, webradio and production group devoted to contemporary art. It explores possible forms of audio narratives by embracing radio as a medium and as a language. RP hosts and commissions experimental sound and radiophonic works, inviting artists and producers to renew the rules of broadcasting and radio storytelling. It produces and distributes documentaries and interviews and works together with museums and cultural institutions to talk about art making and art practices today. Founded in 2006 inside the Palazzo delle Papesse – Center for Contemporary Art in Siena, since 2011 Radio Papesse is based at Villa Romana, Firenze. It is curated by Ilaria Gadenz and Carola Haupt. It adopts the Creative Commons License and is part of the RADIA network.
Communities in Movement is an artistic research project organized and led by artist and writer Brandon LaBelle in collaboration with participating artists, researchers, centers and institutions. The project takes its name from urban theorist and activist Stavros Stavrides, whose work captures the emergence of new expressions of social solidarity as found, for example, in the movement of the squares. Reflecting upon and engaging with questions of emancipatory practices, the project queries historical and contemporary forms of community, from the imagined to the symbolic, the micro to the temporary, and aims to consider community as a dynamic ethical, aesthetic, and cultural embodiment of resistant togetherness. This includes reflecting upon the ways in which community, and collaborative expressions of being-in-common, is often based on forms of creative, critical and (alter)institutional organizing: the establishment of common notions and independent structures that steer the fostering of community as the figuring of new worlds.
The project brings together working groups of participating partners and contributors, in specific locations and contexts, to collaboratively rethink and nurture community work through participatory research practices. This includes a consideration of (under)commoning, pirate care, self-organized governance and experimental pedagogies, as well as collaborations and compositions across human and nonhuman bodies, material objects and energetic forces. Such topics and approaches will result in a range of creative manifestations that work at putting community on the move.