Creative Unions: Free Movement of Culture
Lewisham Arthouse Project Space, 140 Lewisham Way, London SE14 6PD
13 and 14 September, 2017
14:00 – 22:00 (13 September); 10:00 – 13:00 (14 September)
Borders are a concept and a reality that restrict and permit people in different measure. Physical, social, psychological, they hold slow and they hold fast.
Creative Unions: Free Movement of Culture is a two day international artist gathering where the only desire is to make space to ask questions and share different forms of knowledge about what is proximate to us now; culturally, socially, historically, geographically, personally and politically. And it invites you. In fact, it invites you plus one.
CUFMC is a platform and exchange where individuals occupy space/s, sound and listen. It welcomes self-defining recent graduates to produce, provoke and participate in a convivial space where discussion around cooperation and cultural agency foreground any objects, images or situations we might create.
CUFMC is an open forum for sharing and debate rooted in the experience of cultural producers as active, global citizens with common insights, intentions and senses that unite; even when interpretations are undecided or conflicted.
The hosts, (Sophie Chapman and Kerri Jefferis, Paul Haywood and Basia Sliwinska) actively welcome marginalised voices and those interested in maintaining and extending cultural freedoms beyond the reach of political institutions.
CUFMC asks you to:
- Bring a friend, colleague, family member or associate based in/from another country than you. You can bring them: in person, through social media, on the other end of a phone, through collaboratively produced content, an effigy or any objects you want to bring or any other way you can think of that might represent them in the space.
- Plan something to share. Such as: a game, a rant, a movement, a song, a story, an image, an art, an object, a recipe etc. It could be something you want to say, or to try out with others. It should be something that allows you and others to gain knowledge or experience and bring you into contact with new ideas, concepts, realities etc – responding to the ideas raised in the blurb. You can specify what this is in the registration form.
- Be available 13/14 September, 14.00-22.00 and 10.00-13.00 respectively.
Plan, provide and facilitate a welcoming environment conducive to exchange.
Help with technical requirements and other support.
Invite you to a social meal, provided by us on the evening of the 13th at the Arthouse.
Provide accommodation or transport for everyone, unfortunately.
Tell you the answers or predict the results.
Our project partners:
NAFAE (National Association for Fine Art Education), PARADOX (European Fine Art Forum), ELIA (European League of Institutes of Art) and a small cluster of UK Fine Art Departments working through the Erasmus links.
“Creative Unions is an initiative of Central Saint Martins and the other colleges of University of the Arts London bringing together events, actions and voices.” #CreativeUnions
Participants are asked to register before 5th of September for the event via an online form here: https://form.jotformeu.com/71924466542360
Sophie Chapman and Kerri Jefferis are an artist duo that orchestrate situations and very often work in the public realm. Sometimes the work is the experience and therefore transitory, and at other times it manifests in publication, installation or film.
They are interested in how art can puncture and punctuate, activating the social imaginary with gestures, play and interventionist actions. The work commonly cites specific lineages such as feminist consciousness raising and dada-esque rejections of logic or value. Their practice is expanded, and spills out into their self-organising and the (exceptionally good) band Molejoy.
Kerri and Sophie recently contributed to Teaching for People Who Prefer not to Teach edited by Rosalie Schweiker and Mirjam Bayerdörfer, completed Less Navels, March! March! An online/offline residency on The White Pube, collaborated with members of Ultra-red during the Antiuniversity 2017 and were invited to instigate at both Feminist Emergency (Birkbeck University) and What is Feminist Pedagogy? (Valland Academy).
~Must I bring a plus one?
It is something we ask in the ethos of the gathering – but appreciate for each person this will be a different and difficult task. If phone or social media is hard. What about devising what you propose to share with someone else, or factor a ‘respondent’ into your proposition or idea? A +1 can be present in many ways rather than in person, surprise us all. You have permission to interpret/challenge this differently/creatively.
~I graduated 3 years ago, can I still apply?
Absolutely. As long as your not currently ‘on a formal course’.
~Is there any budget for travel or childcare?
Yes. This is limited though.
Please contact us if you would benefit from assistance with any of this.
~What about accommodation?
If you don’t have somewhere to stay, potentially, we may be able to connect London living attendees as hosts. Get in touch and we’ll see what we can do.
~What kinds of contributions do you imagine?
This is up to you. It could be spoken, screened, performed, found, shown or passed around (if object based), heard, read, pinned to the wall, projected, danced, sung… Whatever form makes sense and you feel is relevant, suitable or may be interesting for the content.
We wont have an ‘installation’ period as such, so something that is relatively easy to set up is best.
~How long should it be?
Plan for somewhere between 10-20mins with any questions/discussion included in this time. If you would like to place something in/around the space that people can access in their own time – this is also fine and welcomed (text, images, sound, objects etc). If you have a longer exercise or intervention, please let us know so we can prepare for it.
~What kinds of topics?
As the blurb describes we are looking for content and artists interested in the movement of ideas, cultural freedoms and democracy. How things travel, are stopped, stagnate or grow in the dark. How stories move, shape shift and carry vital or irrelevant information – from where? To where? How we make, what we say, who gets to, when, why, how often?
We would like to discuss different and differing sites of cultural production, borders, thresholds, transgression and transcendence – these can be national, psychological, visible and invisible. Therefore topics/ideas/thoughts could include; reality/the imaginary/the mythical and the magic, internal/external worlds, sex, sexuality and gender, child birth, lived experience, race, religion or national identity. Diasporas, expression and the movement of bodies, storytelling, social time and space/s, science, globalisation, nature, ecology and migration, restrictions, historical inequity and economic inequality, class and culture and counter or subcultures, site and place specificity. Parametres, limits, space travel, time and futurisms, the centre and the margins, invisible and visible forms of control, ownership, stealing and dominance, inclusions, exclusions, publics, party politics, communities, unions and commodities. Singularity and the collective, the niche and the common. Risk, possibility, alternatives, failures – Now, before, later, what next? Cultural production. Borders. Free movement.
Still doesn’t make sense? No worries, drop us a line at: email@example.com with the subject title ‘Creative Unions questions.’
Sophie Chapman – https://www.sophiechapman.com
Kerri Jefferis – https://www.kerrijefferis.com
Paul Haywood – https://www.paulhaywood.net
Basia Sliwinska – http://www.arts.ac.uk/research/ual-staff-researchers/a-z/dr-basia-sliwinska/
Creative Unions: http://www.arts.ac.uk/csm/about-csm/creative-unions/
PARADOX page: http://paradoxfineart.net/paradox/
NAFAE page: http://www.nafae.org.uk/
ELIA page: http://www.elia-artschools.org/
Lewisham Arthouse: http://www.lewishamarthouse.org.uk
Image credit: Magic Holes and Psychic Threads (series), Digital Collage, Sophie Chapman and Kerri Jefferis, 2017.