THE FUTURE OF LIVING

Tate Exchange, Tate Modern, Saturday 2nd and Sunday 3rd November 2019.
Peoples' Bureau in partnership with 198 Contemporary Arts and Learning


What is the future of living in times of great uncertainty? As the ecological emergency deepens and with our democracy in crisis, this timely programme of events considers 'power' in terms of energy and resources as well as asking: What is our role as citizens and artists to hold power to account? How can we contribute to systemic change, find and employ our own power, and create collaborative solutions? Or in other words, how can we think about the future of making in order to survive and thrive?


Peoples’ Bureau in partnership with 198 Contemporary Arts and Learning are co-organising a two-day event in collaboration with Land in Our Names (LION), Lancashire’s Anti-Fracking Nanas, and artists Alexis Calvas, Helen Brewer, Catherine Long, and Jane Lawson. Over the weekend, we will gather as artists, environmental protesters, land reparation activists, decolonial community organisers and academics to activate the space. We will take a practical, conceptual and theoretical look at re-skilling, sustainable and collaborative practice, material use, ancestral knowledge, and system changes. Through building, crafting, workshopping and conversing together, we will consider what are the materials and skills needed for resilient future of living.

Saturday 2nd Nov programme: 12.00 - 17.00

The campaigning 'UK Nanas' came into existence in the summer of 2014 as fracking sites began to appear across the UK. From a first act of ‘taking a field’ and staying for three weeks to alert neighbours of the location for another fracking site, they then went on to deliver public meetings, attend protests, take part in non-violent direct actions and encourage residents to self-empower and join in actions to defend their own communities. Delivering the unwelcome truth about the threat that continued fossil fuel extraction brings - is made more palatable by doing it with tea, cake and warm humanity. The worldwide and UK anti-fracking movement is hugely diverse with strong representation from older people and women. The Nanas continue to evolve as the campaign to protect our natural environment grows more urgent.


12.30 - 14:00

Building Community with the Anti-Fracking Nanas

Join the Nanas in a workshop exploring how we pull together as communities beyond our differences and make the most of all in the community who together bring a wealth of experience and knowledge.

12.30 - 17.00

Together We Sow with artist Amy Mordan
Open collaborative embroidery project. Working together employing needlework skills from different cultures.
Without overarching design, without end goal, we enjoy the communion of being together. Showing our creativity to each other and seeing what this open process of making can be.

14:00 - 17:00

Making Protest

With a 3pm tea and cake session at the ‘Gate Camp’


Join artists and activists in making furniture, banners and bunting for the on-going protest site at Preston New Road. There will be multiple activities to take part in over the course of the day, including:


  • 'Build a Bench': Help build a bench to be decorated and assembled from recycled material. The previous (stolen) bench had been donated by locals to the camp and was an iconic piece of furniture used by politicians, activists and visitors to the site. At one point the bench was used to block the entrance to the fracking site and arrested!
  • 'Knitting, ribboning and bunting': Bring out your inner 'Nana' as we create streams of fabric and colour used to reclaim community and tie messages of solidarity together.
  • 'Banner-making': Paint, sew or glue your slogans, and help to visualise the DIY community that continues to fight against fracking and support communities in resistance.

Materials will be provided.


18:30 - 20:30

Dinner with La Bolina Global Eco-village Network in Spain for a conversation about community-making, hearing about their experience (closed event by invitation only)


Sunday 3rd Nov programme: 12.00 - 17.00

Land In Our Names (LION) is a new grassroots, black-led collective that organises around environmental and land justice issues, particularly as they relate to black people in England. We research, campaign, and educate for the development of black-led inclusive farms, gardens, and public green spaces, using a reparative land justice framework. Who are our elders that have farmed the land in this country? The insidious thing about british colonialism is it’s so violently indirect. When this country was an empire the sun never set on...we literally fed this country. Just because it wasn’t directly on this land, doesn’t mean we don’t have a right to this land.


This day takes place in the protest structure made by the anti-fracking Nanas the previous day. As well as a programme led by LION, we will hold workshops and events by the London Alternative Photography Collective and artists Catherine Long and Jane Lawson.


12:00 - 13:00

Welcome by LION


12.00 - 17:00

Re-skilling workshop on spinning wool. Artist Catherine Long will show you the ancient skill of carding and spinning fleece into woollen yarn. This activity enacts sociologist Richard Sennett’s concept in Together: the Ritual and Pleasures of Cooperation (2012) that in our current competitive society we need to re-learn skills in cooperation and how using the model of the workshop and traditional crafting can help us regain the art of being together.


12.30 - 17.00

Together We Sow with artist Amy Mordan
Open collaborative embroidery project. Working together employing needlework skills from different cultures.
Without overarching design, without end goal, we enjoy the communion of being together. Showing our creativity to each other and seeing what this open process of making can be.


12:30 - 13:00

This is Not a Solution book launch by The London Alternative Photography Collective


13:30 - 14:00

  • Opening of the space by Dee Woods - ancestral blessing
  • LION Introduction - Presentation, Q&A


13:30 - 15:00

Detoxifying Your Art Practice: peer-to-peer mapping session sharing the dirt on the way we currently work with toxic practices and noxious ideas, before collectively problem solving towards sustainable ways of making.


14:00 - 14:30

  • Film Screening - ‘Zaree’a’, ‘Seeds Share - In Memory of Esiah Levy’
  • 2 Film screenings followed by discussion


14:45 - 15:20

  • Seed Swap/Seed Bank demonstration and discussion facilitated by Hallie Debebe-Dessalegne (Public are encouraged to bring their seeds if they wish)


15:30 - 16:00

  • Tea Meditation


15:30 - 17:00

Radical Mycology workshop with artist and grower Jane Lawson. An introduction to Radical Mycology, a social movement based on working with mushrooms and other fungi for personal, societal and ecological resilience.


BIOGRAPHIES of collaborators

AMY MCDONNELL is a curator, researcher and environmental campaigner whose practice engages with contemporary themes of collectivity, collaborative exhibition making and political participation. McDonnell completed a PhD at Chelsea College of Arts in 2017 and then worked as a Parliamentary Assistant at the European Parliament. She is currently working with practices of direct democracy as socially-engaged art practice such as the recent project Home(lessness): A Citizens’ Action in Southwark (2019) supported by the South London Gallery, University of Westminster and the Sortition Foundation. She is a member of the Extinction Rebellion Citizens’ Assembly Working Group.


CATHERINE LONG is a visual artist with a background in contemporary dance. She’s holds a PhD on feminist video art practices awarded by Chelsea College of Arts, University of the Arts London. Her work uses video, dance, painting and sculpture to explore the materiality of the body from a feminist perspective. This interest in corporeality extends to the qualities of materials and how movement and gesture interact with them.

She is the co-founder of Practice in Dialogue and has co-curated and exhibited in In Whose Eyes? at Beaconsfield (2018), We all have a problem with representation at The Showroom (2016) and Feminist Practices in Dialogue at the ICA (2015).


DEE WOODS is a food and farming action-ist and campaigner, and co-founder of Granville Community Kitchen in South Kilburn. A previous BBC Food and Farming Awards winner, Dee sits on the GLA London Food Board, the steering group of People Food Power and is a co-editor of A People's Food Policy. She is an Honorary Research Fellow at CAWR, Coventry University, member of the Food Ethics Council and co-chair of the Independent Food Aid Network, IFAN


EVA SAJOVIC is a socially engaged artist photographer. In her work Sajovic explores the drivers of global displacement such as regeneration, poverty, trafficking, culture and climate change. Her practice covers two strands Participatory social action projects and Photographic social portraiture, where she collaborates closely with the subject to construct the image.

In 2014, with the support of Tate Modern, Eva co-founded the People’s Bureau, a platform facilitating skill exchange that has since become Tate Exchange Associate. She is an Associate Lecturer at UAL’s Central Saint Martins and Theory Lecturer at Chelsea College of Art.


HANNAH FLETCHER is a photographic artist and co-director of London Alternative Photography Collective. Her work is rooted in the challenge of intertwining the organic into the photographic medium. She does this while simultaneously exploring environmentally and ecologically-focused issues. Most recently, she has initiated The Sustainable Darkroom; an on going series of residencies, publications, workshops and talks that address the environmental impact of working with analogue photographic processes. The project brings together artists, photographers, scientists, researchers, technicians and teachers to enquire, research, develop and share approaches to fostering a more sustainable darkroom practice.


HALLIE DEBEBE-DESALEGNE is an organic horticulturalist and seed saver, currently working at Garden Organic's Heritage Seed Library. She has had a passion for growing food since she could hold her first trowel! Using ecological principles as to promote biodiversity and empower our communities drive her love for sustainable horticulture.


HELEN BREWER is an activist and architectural researcher. Her work is concerned with the cultivation of knowledge in resistance spaces, the construction of solidarity infrastructure, and a critical spatial analysis of border-spaces and their architectural apparatus. She is conducting a CHASE-AHRC funded PhD at the Centre for Research Architecture at Goldsmiths, University of London and is a researcher at Topological Atlas.


JANE LAWSON is an artist based in Manchester. Her practice is informed and influenced by her previous experiences as a researcher into corporate ethics at Ethical Consumer magazine in Manchester, co-founder of radical art/design collective UHC, and helping to organise the first three UK Climate Camps. She makes diagrams to help her understand the economic, historical, geographic and biological processes and structures that shape human society and our impact on the world, such as the global financial system, the Earth’s climatic history, the road to Brexit and the effects of technology on democracy. She also attempts to embody alternatives to the dominant cultural narrative which claims that the present economic system, although flawed, is our only realistic option.


JOSINA CALLISTE is a health professional, activist and co-founder of Land in Our Names (LION). She has got her hands dirty in various farming and permaculture projects in London, Portugal and the USA. She loves nature walks and dreams of starting an organic farm with communalism at its heart.


MATTIE LOYCE is an interdisciplinary curator, creative producer and consultant from San Francisco, CA currently based in London, UK. Mattie focuses her work on engaging socio-political content and community building across disciplines and geographies. Focusing on platforming and amplifying the voices of artists of the African Diaspora, artists of colour and queer artists, she has worked across the United States, United Kingdom, and Brasil.


O̩LÁ AYÒRINDÉ (subscript on my name is important, let me know if you’re unable to find the characters) is a land-activist and co-founder of Land in Our Names (LION). Inspired by his experiences as a land-steward in rural England and south-western Nigeria, he actively encourages people through his work to think about their relationship to the land in radical and imaginative ways.


•    •    •

The Future Of Living

a residency in Park Royal

The Peoples Bureau (PB) has been ‘in  residency’ at Park Royal since May 2018, commissioned  by Create London (and with the support of OPDC) with the aim to engage with the  community around issues related to urban change in the area. Following a period  of meetings, walks and discussions with the locals we have decided to focus onthe  question of the Role of Participatory Art Practice and interrogate it  together with the locals and invited guests from the Collective* where we took  up a resident flat for a period of a week.

We  understand the role of art is to provide a space for agonism, mediation and  collaboration that can facilitate:

·       representation  through which citizens can express themselves and bring into visibility their  ways of seeing and

·       a  pluralist space from which a dialogical encounter can be facilitated.

There  were three particular questions we wanted to discuss:

1.  How to communicate/represent this way of working through image/visual as an artist/designer?

Unpicking graphic/visual communication and  Socially Engaged Practice.

(With our guests from Europa, Create London and local resident Ewa  Cwirko-Godycka.)

2. How this work is best communicated/represented democratically- by the collaborating community?

'really what should happen is that people should be able to  control the means of communication themselves...community controlled  communications networks, that's the long term objective'. (Kelly, O., 1984)

(With our guests: local resident Theresa Magee and artist NeilCummings.

3. How this work is communicated/represented by media and translated  by audience?

(With our guests: local resident Amanda Souter, community  filmmaker Andy Porter and activist Robin Browne.)

The  daily encounters (17 – 19 September) started with a lunch in the communal  kitchen on the 8th floor, followed up by a live broadcast of our conversation in one of  the spaces of the Collective. We also took our guests on a tour of the  building: the library, the spa, the pub, the roof terrace, the cinema.

Some  of the resulting materials were presented as an installation as part of the  Open House Weekend (21 and 22 September). A publication will follow later in  the year. You can access sound recordings of the three conversations recorded (and live broadcasted) by the artist Lucia Scazzocchio on soundcloud following the links below.


*a co-living space in Park Royal that offers ‘a  convenient and fulfilling lifestyle' experience.


Artistic forms of production for resistance

10 June, 12 -6pm, Tate Exchange, Tate Modern.


Hosted by Peoples Bureau, this day will be dedicated to exploring the role and ethics of working in socially engaged art practice related to urban change and displacement.

‘What are the new forms of production that allow for new forms of resistance and envisage the possibility of a revitalization of the emancipatory project to which artistic practices can make a decisive contribution (…) Every critical gesture is quickly recuperated and neutralized by the forces of corporate capitalism.’ (Mouffe, 2013)

This event will mark the start of Eva and Rebecca’s critical evaluation of 9 years working collaboratively and will form part of a reflective manual, which they hope will serve as an instruction of and toolkit for a model of best practice.

We invite you to join us with your questions which will help form part of a public discussion (1 - 2.30pm) led by Eva and Rebecca (Peoples Bureau) with Ele Belfiore (Professor of Communication and Media Studies at Loughborough University who has published extensively on the belief in the transformative power and the presumed ‘social impacts’ of the arts) who will share lunch round a table with other invited socially engaged artists and practitioners.

The discussion will take place around Join – a table designed and installed by artist Michael Giambrone.

The day will include an installation of work made during Peoples Bureau’s Unearthing project at Tate Exchange (Taking place in 2017 in collaboration with Shane Waltener and Stave Hill Eco Park) which was recently reworked as part of a residency at Danielle Arnaud Gallery.

There will be performances by Zoe Gilmour (3pm) and Shane Waltener (2.30 - 4pm) . A soundscape will be delivered by sound artist Lee Berwick (4pm onwards).


About Peoples Bureau

Peoples Bureau is a programme of artistic actions that enable community representation and empowerment, delivered by artists Eva Sajovic and Rebecca Davies.

Peoples Bureau was set up in 2014 and based at the Elephant and Castle shopping centre - one of the most contested sites in the capital, currently undergoing a vast development that has been and will continue to permanently displace thousands of people who live and work here. Peoples Bureau collects and makes visible the diversity of cultures, skills, networks and resourcefulness present in an area (eg long-term in Elephant&Castle). Peoples Bureau occupies a unique position in the context of community art, by engaging with a multitude of stakeholders including local residents, the developers, universities, Southwark Council, art institutions, activists and the media, thus creating a vibrant platform for contestation, negotiation and representation.

Through skill exchanges and other interactions, Sajovic and Davies act as community catalysts, activating individuals, communities and local organisations. Their collaborative practice has seen them work with Whitechapel Gallery, LCC, Chelsea College of Art, Tate Modern. Peoples Bureau is a Tate Exchange Associate.

In Elephant&Castle they have worked with over 20 local groups, regularly and actively engaging with over 200 local residents from Latin American, Bangladeshi and British communities. The project has been piloted at the Bootle Library in Liverpool and is currently working in Park Royal as part of a commission from Create.

Rebecca and Eva, with writer Sarah Butler recently completed the film ‘Unearthing Elephant’ which won the Research In Film award at the AHRC film awards, 2017.

***

Mouffe, C (2013) Agonistics. Thinking the world politically London/New York: Verso


***

Lee Berwick is a London based sound artist who is interested in space, energy and the physicality of sound. 

As the 90’s turned to the 0’s Lee recorded all along the Thames, documenting a river and city different to the one we inhabit today. 
Lee’s performance will dig through this forgotten strata of London’s sound history..
The London eye goes up, the Bankside landing stage outside what is now the Tate modern comes down and ships unload at the last London dockyard.


Taking the ceramic. A skill in stages, shared by Sue at Bootle Library #peoplesbureau #humanlibrary

Holding the ceramic. A skill in stages, shared by Sue at Bootle Library #peoplesbureau #humanlibrary

Bowls for At the Human Library Bootle, Liverpool

Produced in collaboration with the people from Bootle the two bowls are going into the kiln tomorrow.

Celebratory event: Tuesday 1 May, 1-3PM. Bootle Library, Liverpool.

All Welcome!


Our project at Bootle Library, Liverpool written up in the Big Issue

In the summer 2017 we have been commissioned by curator Maria Brewster to make work for The Human Library at Bootle library, Liverpool.

The participatory project work that started around skill exchange led into a more in depth engagement with clay and photography, looking to bring the two together and always with community, conversation and sharing at its core. 

Thank you The Big Issue for the write up.


Unearthing Elephant WINS the prestigious Research in Film Awards by AHRC.


Launched in 2015, the Research in Film Awards celebrate short films, up to 30 minutes long, that have been made about the arts and humanities and their influence on our lives. 
Judges for the 2017 Research in Film Awards include Richard Davidson-Houston of Channel 4 Television, Lindsay Mackie Co-founder of Film Club and Matthew Reisz from Times Higher Education.
A special awards ceremony was held at BAFTA, on Thursday 9 November, where the winner of each of the categories was announced. Writer and broadcaster, Danny Leigh was hosting the event. 

The winning films will be shared on the Arts and Humanities Research Council website and YouTube channel. 

To follow the fortunes of the shortlisted films on Twitter via the hashtag #RIFA2017.

WATCH THE FILM HERE: https://vimeo.com/222385394


Elephant's Trumpet ISSUE 1 out in print and online (soon). 

Pick up your copy whilst there are still a few left - fromt he Elephant&Castle shopping centre.

We have started working on ISSUE 2 - to come out mid December.


People's Bureau at Tate Late

taking part at Tate Late at Tate Modern, 29 September 2017, 6 - 10PM
Come along and join in sharing/exchange of skills and lots of fun:


People's Bureau commissioned by At The Library project in Bootle

starting on the 25th September. Please come along and share/exchange your skill and learn something new over a cup of tea and chat.


Screening the UnEarthing Elephant film @ Arts Admin, 27 September, 7.30PM


Unearthing ELEPHANT screened at: 

Mini -Festival Amsterdam, 17 June 2017 (organised by Failed Architecture);

Comment from the organisers:

We had a great night Saturday and the screening was well attended despite the hot weather. We watched the film with about 50 people and had a brief discussion afterwards, among others on the 'porosity' of such a space (in a positive sense), but also on the almost deliberate neglect of such spaces by authorities and real estate owners. FA team member Tim Verlaan made an interesting comparison with the Hoogh Caterijne in Utrecht, built in 1962, both a shopping mall and the city's main transport hub (https://vuartandculture.com/2017/01/11/making-the-invisible-visible/). 

Further screenings: 

Mini -Festival Amsterdam, 17 June 2017 (organised by Failed Architecture); Milton Keynes, 29 June 2017 (in collaboration with the Open University and MK gallery); Southwark Playhouse, July 2017; Liverpool, September 2017; Airspace gallery, Stoke on Trent, Autumn 2017.



4 March, 12-6 pm Tate Exchange, Tate Modern


As part of the Spatial Justice day at the Tate, we will be hosting Prof Andreas Philippopoulos-Mihalopoulos, whose work is the leading force behind the day’s activities. 

Prof Philippopoulos-Mihalopoulos defines spatial justice as the conflict that emerges when one body wants to move into the space of another body. This opens up questions of symbiosis, creative confluence and regeneration, but also issues of power imbalances. The interview will elucidate some of these issues in his work, and the ensuing discussion will attempt at situating ourselves in the ongoing move of regeneration but also displacement of local communities. We hope to explore ideas about the role of developers, art institutions, and artists in dealing with issues of spatial justice and productive ways of reflecting them in their practices.



Saturday 4 March 2017

12 - 4 pm

CLAY WORKSHOP with Shane Waltener
TEA TROLLEY DANCES with 

Sally Child ( Director of bMoSo Academy of Song & Dance, Founder of The Society for Tea Trolley 

Dancing),

Helen Morse Palmer : Accredited Tea Trolley Dance Instructor.  

Tanztheater Adrian Look (Choreography: Adrian Look. Music composition: Stevon Russel. Dancers: Alessio Cappelli, Morena de Leonardis, Durassie Kiangangu, Songhay Toldon, Haeyeon Lim, Taylor Thompson, Maria Ines Sousa, Daniel Potter and Amy Chambers).

3.30 - 4 pm

TEA and CAKE 


4-6 pm

SPATIAL JUSTICE with Prof Andreas Philippopoulos-MihalopoulosInterview by Yoriko Otomo followed by a discussion with an invited panel.

The MODEL of the current shopping centre produced in collaboration with Hester Buck will be exhibited.



ALL EVENTS FREE and OPEN TO ALL.


Copyright © All rights reserved.
Using Format