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UVWCulture and Design Workers Union Meeting #1

UVW

 
If you work in art, graphic design, fashion design, filmmaking, curation, editing or writing or ANY type of creative or cultural work, including arts administration and technician work, join us to discuss how we can fight against:

Unfair wages in our sector/s
Illegal unpaid internships
Unpaid overtime
Work-related stress and burnout
Rampant exploitation by institutions and bosses
Precariousness of freelance or temporary work in our sector/s

We are intentionally keeping our definition of creative employment as loose as possible, and recognise that art workers might have multiple jobs :)

All are welcome to plan our next steps. For more info and how to join

The venue is wheelchair accessible. Please let us know if you have specific access requirements or would like to reserve a seat.

Please register your attendance here, so we can have an idea of numbers.
FAQs

WHAT DOES A UNION DO?
A Union represents you in a dispute using experienced legal case workers. In the UK, you may be able to receive back-payment of unpaid wages (i.e. if you did an unpaid internship), unpaid sick pay, or unpaid holiday pay for up to 6 years. A Union is not just for when help is needed, but can offer other types of support such as advice, training, and education.

WHAT IS UNITED VOICES OF THE WORLD?
United Voices of the World (UVW) is “a members-led, campaigning trade union of mainly migrant & precarious workers.” unions like UVW are addressing current changes in employment – including the rise of zero-hours contracts and precarious work – head-on. Working with historically ‘hard to organise’ people, perhaps working alone in geographically dispersed locations, they respond quickly to fight injustices, and are actively shaped by the needs of their membership as they develop. It is an English and Spanish speaking union. It recently became non-hierarchically organised, with members electing to do away with executive roles.

WHY NOW?
As a working group within Evening Class, we have been having conversations about unhealthy working practices that we observe within the graphic design ‘industry’. Creative work is routinely dissociated from labour, often through employers and clients misunderstanding what constitutes ideation and production. All of which contributes to what we view as worsening conditions. Unionising now offers a much needed opportunity to amplify our shared grievances and articulate cooperative demands.

HOW DO I JOIN THE GROUP?
Join UVW, come to our next meeting, and join our discord online chat (members only).
Membership of the union is £6 to £10 a month depending on income.

WHAT IF I DON’T LIVE IN LONDON OR THE UK?
We can still keep you up to date with our plans, sign up to our mailing list. We are keen to connect to other individuals and groups organising cultural workers in the UK, international collaborators, and to spread awareness of similar schemes worldwide, so please get in touch.

Aya Haidar: Out Of Service

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Preview Thurs 26 Sept 6.30–8.30pm
27 Sept–27 Oct 2019
Open: Wed–Sun 12–6PM

Out Of Service presents a new commission by London-based Lebanese artist Aya Haidar. Haidar produces embroidery work on found textiles relating to home, diaspora, memory and imagination, collaboration around shared concerns is a key part of her practice.

New work has been developed over a 9-month period through conversations, workshops and time spent with campaign groups, community organisers and cultural workers all working with a focus on domestic and immaterial labour.

Installed at Cubitt are a series of embroidered works all made in Haidar’s home, sewn onto dusters, muslin cloths and bin liners. Working with textiles in this way, as ‘home productions’, produces discrete pieces that work to counter the nostalgic notion of the ‘domestic.’ Instead, Out of Service positions the domestic as a political site and its proximity for Haidar to artistic work, to affect, repetition, care work, paid/unpaid, cleaning, parenting, the working body.

The leaks, spills, stains, invisible work, workers, bodies and their movements, the anecdotes of Haidar and others, have been recorded, stitched and presented. These serve as a partial-portrait of domestic space as work place, office, studio, nursery; where one lives, works, socialises, leaves.

Out of Service continues Cubitt’s Structures That Cooperate programme, a 15 month series of exhibitions, events, workshops and research departing from Cubitt’s position as an artist run cooperative and how this can shape and support collective concerns as cultural workers.

 

—-

Aya Haidar is a London based Lebanese artist whose practice develops artworks through conversations around shared interests and concerns relating to home, diaspora, memory and imagination – often using embroidering, craft and collage. Past works have focussed on the recycling of found and disposable objects making works that explore loss, migration and memory, with a personal connection to the history of a region [the Middle East] explored through the histories contained within personal objects/belongings. Recent solo exhibitions include: Wish You Were Here Athr gallery, Jeddah (2017) and Behind Closed Doors New Art Exchange, Nottingham (2011). Recent group exhibitions include: New Art Exchange Open, Nottingham (2019), Refusing to be still (2018), The Clocks Were Striking Thirteen (2018) LTAYM, Athr Gallery (2017), I Spy with My Little Eye, Mosaic Rooms, London (2015)

 

Going Places 2019

Going Places 2019 
A series of workshops and events taking place at Cubitt and off-site in community and public spaces as part of a programme exploring engaged practice, delivered in partnership with All Change.

 

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Since 2017 Cubitt’s Education Curator Esther Collins has been working with invited groups and artists to explore the development of creative practices over time and in response to context and site.

 

Still Life

Wednesday 2 Oct 12-2pm

Duval House, 39 Elthorne Road

A drawing, making and conversation event, hosted by participants in Cubitt’s Home Library Service projects devised with Ania Bas. Through portrait making and one-to-one conversations you will share ideas and discover what you’ve got in common.

Booking: e mail esther@cubittartists.org.uk

 

Ralph Steadman

Ralph Steadman’s studio 2019 credit: Ollie Harrop

Artist in Time

Thursday 03 October 6- 8pm

Cubitt Gallery

Join writer and critic Chris Fite- Wassilak and artist Anne Tallentire to discuss the shifting rhythms and patterns of artistic practice. Fite-Wassilak is the author of the forthcoming publication the Artist in Time (Bloomsbury, 2020), which features visual artists, filmmakers, musicians, dancers and writers from across the UK, including Tallentire alongside Frank Bowling, Wendy Cope, Ken Loach, Ralph Steadman and others. Through studio visits and interviews Fite-Wassilak has recorded artists’ personal experience of how the act of creating shifts and develops over time, discussing their evolving relationship to making including everyday rituals, pace, aspiration and inspiration. The Artist in Time was commissioned by the Baring Foundation as part of a decade-long programme supporting older people and the arts.

Anne Tallentire is a London-based artist working with moving image, sculpture, installation, performance and photography, exploring the systems that control the built environment, affect displacement and shape the economics of labour. recent solo exhibitions include the Grazer Kunstverein, Austria, 2018, and a forthcoming exhibition at the MAC, Belfast, in August 2020.

Tallentire and Fite-Wassilak have collaborated extensively, co-organsing the quarterly event ‘hmn’.

Booking: via eventbrite https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/artist-in-time-tickets-72536451479

 

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Residents at The Mildmays credit: Benjamin A Owen

Block Party

Wednesday 09 October 4.30- 7.30pm

The Mildmays are three Extra Care housing schemes located in the heart of Islington – a few minutes walk from one another. This special event celebrates and shares work from a vibrant long-term programme of arts projects with Cubitt and All Change including on-site artists’ studios, combined arts, poetry and story-telling workshops. Join residents, staff and artists to share and experience work created with residents and Cubitt Community Studio holders Sadie Edginton and Joshua Sofaer and All Change artists Francesca Beard, Leticia Valverdes, Simon Mole and Fran Lobo.

Booking: e mail projects@allchangearts.org to book

Where: The Mildmays N1

 

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Installation of Going Along Without a Body Benjamin A Owen 2018

If We Speak of Remarkable Things

Wednesday 16 October 3 – 6pm

Cubitt Gallery

Seven artists: Ania Bas, Sadie Edginton, Hayley Harrison, Fox Irving, Benjamin A Owen, Joshua Sofaer and Lucy Steggals meet at Cubitt to talk about their commissioned work with older people in community or care settings.

Who have they met and made work with? What did they learn about themselves and how they make art? Who and what inspired them? Who do they admire, and what do they aspire to next?

Booking: via eventbrite https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/if-we-speak-of-remarkable-things-tickets-72542896757

 

Saturday Social

Saturday 19 October 10am- 12pm

Studio 5 Cubitt 8 Angel Mews N1 9HH

Join Cubitt’s regular Saturday Socials group and artist Lucy Steggals to experiment with materials, make objects, images and connections through sharing ideas.

Booking: e mail esther@cubittartists.org.uk

 

Collective Memory

Wednesday 30  October 12- 3pm

Transport from Cubitt 8 Angel Mews N1 9HH to Tate Britain, Millbank London SW1P 4RG leaves at 12 noon from Cubitt

Cubitt’s home Library Service group invite you to visit the Tate collection. Working with Ania Bas the group will discuss exhibitions, make artwork together in the gallery and access the archive.

Booking: e mail esther@cubittartists.org.uk

 

Follow this link to the full festival line up: GoingPlacesFestivalLeaflet

This programme comes out of our three-year Celebrating Age programme Going Places in partnership with All Change.

Celebrating Age is funded through Arts Council and Baring Foundation

 

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Aya Haidar | Out of Service discussion event

SERVICE

 

Sun 6 Oct  | 2–4pm Out of Service discussion event

Free, no booking required

An informal discussion event drawing out of the ideas, processes and politics behind Aya Haidar’s Out Of Service commission for Cubitt. A conversation will be chaired between Haidar, Cubitt Curatorial Fellow Louise Shelley and Marissa Begonia Coordinator of The Voice of Domestic Workers.  

Cooperative Lunch #3: A Public Assembly

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Cooperative Lunch #3: A Public Assembly
Sun 29 Sept, 1–3pm
Free, no booking required

 

What is this process?
What is this thing that homogenises complexity, difference, dynamic dialogue,
action for change and replaces it with sameness?*

 

The 2018/19 public programme at Cubitt has been organising under the title Structures That Cooperate – events, exhibitions, research and conversations have centred Cubitt’s position as an artist-run cooperative and how this can shape and support collective concerns as cultural workers. 

Cooperative Lunch #3 will take the form of public assembly around the proposition that London is a structure that does not cooperate. Unaffordable rents, unsustainable competition, unrealistic expectations – so why do art practitioners continue to move here? With what hopes and at what cost? Gentrification, competition and precarity have become normalised and internalised. How can we find ways to flourish under these conditions? 

Cooperative Lunch #3: A Public Assembly is an open forum to share, debate or just observe. Through a series of short readings and screenings; discussions will explore the conditions that lead to what American writer Sarah Schulman has called the gentrification of culture: increasingly precarious living and working conditions, the effects of gentrification on creativity and the homogenising impact of higher education. 

——–

The event is hosted by Angela Blanc, Panos Fourtoulakis, Nora Kovacs, Ottavia Lunari and William Rees, a collective of curators currently studying and living in London. The hosts will prepare free food and drinks for all guests. 

Cooperative Lunches is a regular event series at Cubitt, an event around food, community, sharing space and knowledge. The first Cooperative Lunch in October 2018 was hosted by The Voice of Domestic Workers, a migrant domestic worker union in residence at Cubitt until December 2019 the second was in February and hosted by Cooperativas de Alimentos.

*Sarah Schulman, The Gentrification of the Mind

Image:  Morag Keil, Georgie Nettel, The Fascism of Everyday Life, 2016, HD Video, 11 mins, 44 secs
Courtesy the artists and Project Native Informant London

Aya Haidar: Out Of Service

round pink

 

Preview Thurs 26 Sept 6.30–8.30pm
27 Sept–27 Oct 2019
Open: Wed–Sun 12–6PM

Out Of Service presents a new commission by London-based Lebanese artist Aya Haidar. Haidar produces embroidery work on found textiles relating to home, diaspora, memory and imagination, collaboration around shared concerns is a key part of her practice.

New work has been developed over a 9-month period through conversations, workshops and time spent with campaign groups, community organisers and cultural workers all working with a focus on domestic and immaterial labour.

Installed at Cubitt are a series of embroidered works all made in Haidar’s home, sewn onto dusters, muslin cloths and bin liners. Working with textiles in this way, as ‘home productions’, produces discrete pieces that work to counter the nostalgic notion of the ‘domestic.’ Instead, Out of Service positions the domestic as a political site and its proximity for Haidar to artistic work, to affect, repetition, care work, paid/unpaid, cleaning, parenting, the working body.

The leaks, spills, stains, invisible work, workers, bodies and their movements, the anecdotes of Haidar and others, have been recorded, stitched and presented. These serve as a partial-portrait of domestic space as work place, office, studio, nursery; where one lives, works, socialises, leaves.

Out of Service continues Cubitt’s Structures That Cooperate programme, a 15 month series of exhibitions, events, workshops and research departing from Cubitt’s position as an artist run cooperative and how this can shape and support collective concerns as cultural workers.

 

 

Aya Haidar is a London based Lebanese artist whose practice develops artworks through conversations around shared interests and concerns relating to home, diaspora, memory and imagination – often using embroidering, craft and collage. Past works have focussed on the recycling of found and disposable objects making works that explore loss, migration and memory, with a personal connection to the history of a region [the Middle East] explored through the histories contained within personal objects/belongings. Recent solo exhibitions include: Wish You Were Here Athr gallery, Jeddah (2017) and Behind Closed Doors New Art Exchange, Nottingham (2011). Recent group exhibitions include: New Art Exchange Open, Nottingham (2019), Refusing to be still (2018), The Clocks Were Striking Thirteen (2018) LTAYM, Athr Gallery (2017), I Spy with My Little Eye, Mosaic Rooms, London (2015)

Rita Munus: Write It Speak It Move It

write it

 

Workshops: July–September 2019
Public Presentation: Sat 7 Sept 2019, 5–7pm. Performance starts 5.30pm. Booking essential book here
Screening event co-presented with LUX: Wed 11 Sept 2019, 7–8.30pm book here

 

Write It Speak It Move It is a project devised by Rita Munus, a writing and events collective comprising of Sop and Charlotte Heather, both of whom live with chronic illness.

 

Rita Munus will host a series of workshops on writing, vocals, percussion and movement with an invited group of artists across July and August at Cubitt Gallery. Work will be collectively developed to ask how we understand our chronically ill bodies, amplifying words and sounds that need to be heard in relation to capacity, capitalism, institutions, loved ones and the public. The project will not be about generating definitive answers or theories, but to investigate similarities, differences and hidden parts.

Join us on September 7th when Rita Munus and the Write It Speak It Move It group will present the resulting form/s at Cubitt gallery – experimenting, extracting, sharing, swapping, instructing, listening, recording, scoring, drawing, exchanging and demonstrating.

This is a relaxed event, this means that if you tic, shout or move about, you’re more than welcome. Please contact us if you have any particular access needs by phone 208 7278 8226 or email info@cubittartists.org. Cubitt is fully wheelchair accessible and there are wheelchair accessible toilet facilities. Assistance dogs are welcome in all spaces.

The Write It Speak It Move It group is: Sop and Charlotte Heather (Rita Munus), Juliet Johnson, Zuleika Lebow, Irene Revell and Lucie Russell.

BIO:

Rita Munus are a collective that runs writing workshops and events with a focus on radical creative practice and process as a vehicle for topical discussion, exploration, play and catharsis. The collective is made up of writer Charlotte Heather and artist Sop and focuses predominantly on issues of chronic illness, queerness, otherness and capitalism, engaging with and prioritising participants who have direct experience with the themes.

The first series of workshops ILLTH looked specifically at chronic illness, the sick body and capitalism. The sick body is seen as ‘less than’ within a capitalist framework, because it cannot participate in production to a ‘satisfactory’ level. But the sick body is not ‘less than’. Focus on ‘getting better’ or ‘being well’ puts unnecessary force on the sick body to achieve something that for many chronically ill people is impossible. Often this actually makes the body more sick. Capitalism leads to over exertion – capitalism leads to chronic illness – illness struggles to fit into capitalism, thus the circular plot. There is a distinct parallel between ILLTH’s focus on process, not production, and the need for the sick body to be able to focus on just being, as opposed to the binaries of sick and well and ‘getting better’.

Future workshops will cover mental health, the pharmaceutical industry, the physical body and its movement, gender identity and sexual identities and behaviours, all in conversation with capitalism.

“The workshops let you write, but what you write is not for others consumption. You do not create a final product. You enter an ongoing series of discussions with each other on subjects which apply to the participants. You write something that you can do whatever you want with. You write because you have something to say, even if it is only to yourself. You write to play; with words, ideas, the world, yourself, others. You do not write to commodify your feelings, to conform to production, or to make yourself palatable to others. You do not write to be consumed, you write to experience writing.”

rita – to tear, scratch, write

munus – service performed for the community, duty, work

Commissioned and supported by Unlimited, celebrating the work of disabled artists, with funding from Spirit of 2012.

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Rita Munus: Film Screening

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RITA MUNUS: WRITE IT SPEAK IT MOVE IT

Film screening event co-presented with LUX

Wednesday 11 September 2019, 7–8.30pm. Book here

Sop from Rita Munus in collaboration with Charlotte Procter (Cinenova/LUX) present a screening event as part of the Write It Speak It Move It project. The screening is an attempt to describe the complex relationship between a life lived with chronic illness and medical institutions; including diagnoses, medications and medicalised narratives which often simplify the sick person’s sense of self and agency.

The films chosen present contrasts to formalised routes of medical care and instead draw on friendship and the informal structure of mutual care and support given from our chosen family – our friends, which often passes unacknowledged but can be life saving.

Programme:

A shell hook into my throat – Write It Speak It Move It group, UK, 2019, 12mins

When I was a Monster – Anne McGuire, USA, 1996, 5.5mins

Denial – Ann Whitehurst & Mike Stubbs, UK, 1996, 6mins

Humaniora – Rosalind Nashashibi, UK, 2003, 12mins

Get Well Soon – Carolyn Lazard, USA,  2015, 13.5mins

Notes From The Underlands – Romily Alice Walden, 2019, 10mins

Duration: 59mins

This is a relaxed screening, This means that if you tic, shout or move about, you’re more than welcome. Please contact us if you have any particular access needs by phone 208 7278 8226 or email info@cubittartists.org. Cubitt is fully wheelchair accessible and there are wheelchair accessible toilet facilities. Assistance dogs are welcome in all spaces.

Commissioned and supported by Unlimited, celebrating the work of disabled artists, with funding from Spirit of 2012.

Image: When I was a Monster – Anne McGuire, 1996. Courtesy of the Artist and LUX, London.

 

——

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Domestic Work is Work

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Domestic Work is Work
An exhibition of recent education projects and campaign work
August 7–11 2019
Open Wed–Sun, 12–6pm
Sun 11, 12–6pm: on the hour exhibition tours and join the afternoon workshop activities and campaign discussions

Domestic Work is Work is organised by The Voice of Domestic Workers and hosted by Cubitt. The exhibition will present the group’s recent film My Home is Not My Home a collectively produced arts project that emerged as a response to the exploitation, invisibility and marginality of migrant domestic workers due to their class, gender, race and UK immigration laws.

Since October 2018 The Voice of Domestic Workers have been a part of the current Structures That Cooperate programme at Cubitt. On a practical level the spaces at Cubitt have been made available to support the group’s ongoing work and collaborations with cultural workers, educators and activists. The sharing of space has also been the grounds for developing forms of solidarity and knowledge exchange in relation to work, education, precarity and collective organising.

Workshops, events and discussions have asked how strategies of art production and distribution can inform and support social movements related to labour and visibility – intending also to build new alliances that can propose strategies for continued collective working. This collaboration to align and support labour struggles across different sectors is in tandem to conversations with W.A.G.E. the Cubitt Cooperative and others to address models of cooperativity and resource distribution in the arts.

On the last day of this six-day presentation join members of VODW 12–6pm, for an ‘open studio’ format which will present hourly introductions to their work and the work on display and 2–4pm join a workshop with Barcelona based illustrator Abigail Tarraso who is supporting the production of a new campaign publication.

A self-organised network and campaigning group calling for justice and rights for Britain’s sixteen thousand migrant domestic workers. The Voice of Domestic Workers provide educational and community activities for domestic workers – including English language lessons, drama and art classes, and employment advice, and mount rescues for domestic workers stuck with abusive employers.​ Their work seeks to end discrimination and protect migrant domestic workers living in the UK by providing or assisting in the provision of education, training, healthcare and legal advice.

www.thevoiceofdomesticworkers.com

Domestic Work is Work

 

15

Domestic Work is Work
An exhibition of recent education projects and campaign work
August 7–11 2019
Open Wed–Sun, 12–6pm
Sun 11, 12–6pm: on the hour exhibition tours and join the afternoon workshop activities and campaign discussions

Domestic Work is Work is organised by The Voice of Domestic Workers and hosted by Cubitt. The exhibition will present the group’s recent film My Home is Not My Home a collectively produced arts project that emerged as a response to the exploitation, invisibility and marginality of migrant domestic workers due to their class, gender, race and UK immigration laws.

Since October 2018 The Voice of Domestic Workers have been a part of the current Structures That Cooperate programme at Cubitt. On a practical level the spaces at Cubitt have been made available to support the group’s ongoing work and collaborations with cultural workers, educators and activists. The sharing of space has also been the grounds for developing forms of solidarity and knowledge exchange in relation to work, education, precarity and collective organising.

Workshops, events and discussions have asked how strategies of art production and distribution can inform and support social movements related to labour and visibility – intending also to build new alliances that can propose strategies for continued collective working. This collaboration to align and support labour struggles across different sectors is in tandem to conversations with W.A.G.E. the Cubitt Cooperative and others to address models of cooperativity and resource distribution in the arts.

On the last day of this six-day presentation join members of VODW 12–6pm, for an ‘open studio’ format which will present hourly introductions to their work and the work on display and 2–4pm join a workshop with Barcelona based illustrator Abigail Tarraso who is supporting the production of a new campaign publication.

A self-organised network and campaigning group calling for justice and rights for Britain’s sixteen thousand migrant domestic workers. The Voice of Domestic Workers provide educational and community activities for domestic workers – including English language lessons, drama and art classes, and employment advice, and mount rescues for domestic workers stuck with abusive employers.​ Their work seeks to end discrimination and protect migrant domestic workers living in the UK by providing or assisting in the provision of education, training, healthcare and legal advice.

www.thevoiceofdomesticworkers.com

Rita Munus: Write It Speak It Move It

write it

 

Workshops: July–September 2019
Public Presentation: Sat 7 Sept 2019, 5–7pm. Booking essential book here
Screening event co-presented with LUX: Wed 11 Sept 2019, 7–8.30pm

 

Write It Speak It Move It is a project devised by Rita Munus, a writing and events collective comprising of Sop and Charlotte Heather, both of whom live with chronic illness.

Rita Munus will host a series of workshops on writing, vocals, percussion and movement with an invited group of artists across July and August at Cubitt Gallery. Work will be collectively developed to ask how we understand our chronically ill bodies, amplifying words and sounds that need to be heard in relation to capacity, capitalism, institutions, loved ones and the public. The project will not be about generating definitive answers or theories, but to investigate similarities, differences and hidden parts.

Join us on September 7th when Rita Munus and the Write It Speak It Move It group will present the resulting form/s at Cubitt gallery – experimenting, extracting, sharing, swapping, instructing, listening, recording, scoring, drawing, exchanging and demonstrating.

This is a relaxed event, this means that if you tic, shout or move about, you’re more than welcome. Please contact us if you have any particular access needs by phone 208 7278 8226 or email info@cubittartists.org. Cubitt is fully wheelchair accessible and there are wheelchair accessible toilet facilities. Assistance dogs are welcome in all spaces.

The Write It Speak It Move It group is: Sop and Charlotte Heather (Rita Munus), Juliet Johnson, Zuleika Lebow, Irene Revell and Lucie Russell.

BIO:

Rita Munus are a collective that runs writing workshops and events with a focus on radical creative practice and process as a vehicle for topical discussion, exploration, play and catharsis. The collective is made up of writer Charlotte Heather and artist Sop and focuses predominantly on issues of chronic illness, queerness, otherness and capitalism, engaging with and prioritising participants who have direct experience with the themes.

The first series of workshops ILLTH looked specifically at chronic illness, the sick body and capitalism. The sick body is seen as ‘less than’ within a capitalist framework, because it cannot participate in production to a ‘satisfactory’ level. But the sick body is not ‘less than’. Focus on ‘getting better’ or ‘being well’ puts unnecessary force on the sick body to achieve something that for many chronically ill people is impossible. Often this actually makes the body more sick. Capitalism leads to over exertion – capitalism leads to chronic illness – illness struggles to fit into capitalism, thus the circular plot. There is a distinct parallel between ILLTH’s focus on process, not production, and the need for the sick body to be able to focus on just being, as opposed to the binaries of sick and well and ‘getting better’.

Future workshops will cover mental health, the pharmaceutical industry, the physical body and its movement, gender identity and sexual identities and behaviours, all in conversation with capitalism.

“The workshops let you write, but what you write is not for others consumption. You do not create a final product. You enter an ongoing series of discussions with each other on subjects which apply to the participants. You write something that you can do whatever you want with. You write because you have something to say, even if it is only to yourself. You write to play; with words, ideas, the world, yourself, others. You do not write to commodify your feelings, to conform to production, or to make yourself palatable to others. You do not write to be consumed, you write to experience writing.”

rita – to tear, scratch, write

munus – service performed for the community, duty, work

Commissioned and supported by Unlimited, celebrating the work of disabled artists, with funding from Spirit of 2012.

u_logo2

Self does not understand: A film screening event organised by Erik Martinson

Demikhov Dog - Anastasia Sosunova

 

Self does not understand: A film screening event organised by Erik Martinson
Thursday 4 July | 7–8.45pm
Free, no booking required

 

Taking Serena Lee’s Second Tongues proposition, Canadian curator Erik Martinson has been invited to programme an evening of film and readings.

Self does not understand derives its title from a phrase spoken by the character Warlock in the 1980’s comic The New Mutants. Warlock is an alien with the power to meta-morph into any shape or form, though he has a difficult time understanding our world, needing to constantly learn about how humans communicate with each other. He identifies as ‘Self’ and his teammates are his ‘Self-friends’. One teammate in particular called Doug Ramsey, codenamed Cypher, has the mutant power to innately learn and understand languages rapidly, whether they are human, machinic, or alien in nature. These two characters’ lives are intertwined, from first encounter of communicating through patterned light, in the vein of Close Encounters of the Third Kind, to a complicated mutually symbiotic relationship. Through tragedy Warlock must come to terms with death, something his kind experiences and understands in some fundamentally different ways, prompting this programme’s title.

Self does not understand considers tiny translations between: ‘self’ and ‘self’, ‘self’ and ‘other self’, ‘self’ and ‘other’, ‘other’ and ‘other’, and various permutations or these arbitrary structures. When fluency and comprehension are closely examined, the solid ground they present is quickly revealed as ongoing, fragile calculations. Like a decimal place rounded-up, they are an approximation, even within the same language set. Fluency and comprehension are made up of so many encounters, of so many oscillations between understanding and not, until one seems to win out.

The event features a selection of readings and artists’ moving image. Artists presented include: Stephanie Comilang, Jessa Mockridge, Lana Lin, Shanzhai Lyric, Anastasia Sosunova, with a guest appearance by Vrillon.

Programme:

Q!hosa, afterword from Exercises: xhosa textbook fiction (unpublished), Jessa Mockridge, 2015, 15:00 (Live Reading)

The Endless Garment: I am an enemy of fantasy. A Group Poetry Reading by Shanzhai Lyric, 2016 – ongoing, 15:00

<intermission>

The 1977 Southern Television Alien Broadcast Interruption, NowYouKnow (Youtube), 2017, 7:42 (excerpt)

Demikhov Dog, Anastasia Sosunova, 2017, 7:24                                                        

Stranger Baby, Lana Lin, 1995, 13:54

Lumapit Sa Akin, Paraiso (Come To Me, Paradise), Stephanie Comilang, 2016, 25:46

—-

Erik Martinson (Canada/Latvia) is an independent curator and writer based in London, UK. He worked in Toronto at Vtape, a not-for-profit video art distributor, from 2005-2014, and was a member of the Pleasure Dome curatorial collective from 2006-2014. He completed his MFA in Curating at Goldsmiths, University of London (2016). He has curated screenings/exhibitions for: Art Star 3 Video Art Biennale at SAW Gallery (2007); Vtape’s Curatorial Incubator (2009); the Rendezvous with Madness Film Festival (2010, 2011); the Images Festival (2012); A Space Gallery (2012); Art Gallery of Mississauga (2013); Institute of Contemporary Arts London (2015); Chalton Gallery (2016); LUX Artists’ Moving Image (2016, 2017); Contemporary Art Centre Vilnius (2016); The Ryder (2017); Toronto International Film Festival’s Wavelengths Series (2017); Close-Up Film Centre (2018); Whitechapel Gallery (2018); Process Experimental Film Festival, Riga (2018); Contemporary Art Museum of Estonia (EKKM), Tallinn (2018); and North Norwegian Art Centre (2019). He participated in: Independent Curators International (ICI) Curatorial Intensive on Time-Based Media, New York (2013); and the selection jury for Videonale.15 at Kunstmuseum Bonn (2015). He was assistant editor for the Nuclear Culture Source Book (edited by Ele Carpenter) published by Black Dog Publishing in partnership with Bildmuseet and Arts Catalyst (2016). Recent residencies include: Rupert, Vilnius (2016) and Nordland College of Art and Film, Kabelvåg (2018/2019). He has received support from: inaugural Stuart Croft Foundation Special Projects Award (2017) and Canada Council for the Arts: ‘Research and Creation’ Grant (2018).

 

Supported by Canada House, Canada Council for the Arts, Arts Council England and Outset Contemporary Art Fund.

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Image: still Demikhov Dog, Anastasia Sosunova, 2017, 7:24

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