Ninth episode of ‘Incidents (of Travel)’ – Dispatch by Becky Forsythe and Þorgerður Ólafsdóttir from Reykjavík, Iceland

Episode #9 of ‘Incidents (of Travel)’ from Reyjkavík on http://incidents.kadist.org 
All photographs by Þorgerður Ólafsdóttir © 2018.


In the ninth 'Incidents (of Travel)' dispatch, Canadian curator Becky Forsythe and Icelandic artist Þorgerður Ólafsdóttir navigate Reykjavík's surroundings considering Þorgerður's "current interest in Icelandic Spar (a form of transparent calcite), its double refraction and light-polarizing properties. In a race with daylight, they travel between sites, collecting moments and considering the ways in which geologic time surfaces in the context of human time."

Each of the 27 photographs is augmented by one or more extra assets – a brief commentary, a sound or a caption – accessed by clicking the words overlaying the images.

Selection of pages from the latest Incidents (of Travel)' dispatch from Reyjkavík. 


'Incidents (of Travel)' explores the chartered itinerary as a format of artistic encounter and an extended offline conversation between curator/s and artist/s. Online storytelling presents and documents curatorial fieldwork and a day conceived by an artist for a curator.

Conceived by Latitudes in 2012 as day-long artist-led tours around Mexico City (with five dispatches presented as part of an exhibition at Casa del Lago), 'Incidents of Travel' had sequels in 2013 in Hong Kong (online dispatches published via Twitter, Instagram, and Soundcloud) and San Francisco in 2015 (daily posts as part of Kadist's Instagram take over initiative #ArtistNotInTheStudioCuratorNotAtTheOffice).

In 2016 Kadist and Latitudes partnered in a new 'distributed' phase of 'Incidents (of Travel)' as part of Kadist Online Projects, publishing contributions from invited curators and artists working around the world.





Earlier conversations have taken place in Buenos Aires (Argentina), Hobart (Tasmania), Yerevan (Armenia), Terengganu (Malaysia), Lisbon (Portugal), Suzhou (China), Jinja (Uganda) and Chicago (US). 

The first dispatch launched in April 2016 with an itinerary by curator Yesomi Umolu and artist Harold Mendez from Chicago – a day photographed by Nabiha Khan





The second dispatch came from Jinja in Uganda, where curator Moses Serubiri invited photographer Mohsen Taha to explore Jinja's Indian architectural legacy and Idi Amin's notorious expulsion of Uganda's Asian minority in 1972.




The third episode took place while curator Yu Ji and poet Xiao Kaiyu hiked on Dong Shan (East Mountain), 130 km west of Shanghai, on a peninsula stretching into Tai Hu lake near the city of Suzhou, China. 

The fourth dispatch came from Lisbon, where Galician curator Pedro de Llano visited key locations that marked the life and work of Luisa Cunha.

 


The fifth episode took place in April 2016, when curator Simon Soon and artist chi too visited the Malaysian North Eastern state of Terengganu, where chi spent some time in 2013, surrounded by "men and women who work(ed) multiple jobs as a fishermen, house builders, boat builders, farmers, coconut pickers, food producers, and everything else that matters." 
 


The sixth episode narrates a walking itinerary conducted by curator Marianna Hovhannisyan with Vardan Kilichyan, Gohar Hosyan, and Anaida Verdyan in Yerevan, the capital of Armenia, documenting the transformed, disappeared, or permanently-closed art institutions in the city centre.


The seventh episode comes from Hobart, capital of Tasmania. It is narrated by curator Camila Marambio, following an itinerary devised by artist Lucy Bleach. They spent the day "encircling the outer limits of human understanding by visiting the histories, both past, and present, of attempts to reach beyond our sensory capacities through governance, technology, and reverie", and ended the day cooking at Lucy's home sharing their mutual love for quinces.
Episode 8 from Buenos Aires http://incidents.kadist.org/buenosaires


In the eighth '
Incidents (of Travel)' dispatch Móvil co-founder and curator Alejandra Aguado followed the itinerary devised by the artist Diego Bianchi around Buenos Aires, Argentina. 

Their exploration took them from the self-regulated community Velatropa to the buzzing commercial area of Once, identifying human and non-human flows and interactions. This became an entry point for discussing Bianchi's interests in how, as consumers, we define a particular zeitgeist and appropriate trends that enable us to affirm our identities.

RELATED CONTENT:





Eighth episode of ‘Incidents (of Travel)’ – Dispatch by Alejandra Aguado and Diego Bianchi from Buenos Aires, Argentina

Episode 8 from Buenos Aires now online on http://incidents.kadist.org/


In the eighth '
Incidents (of Travel)' dispatch Móvil co-founder and curator Alejandra Aguado followed the itinerary devised by the artist Diego Bianchi around Buenos Aires, Argentina. 

Their exploration took them from the self-regulated community Velatropa to the buzzing commercial area of Once, identifying human and non-human flows and interactions. This became an entry point for discussing Bianchi's interests in how, as consumers, we define a particular zeitgeist and appropriate trends that enable us to affirm our identities.

Each of the 20 photographs is augmented by one or more extra assets – a brief commentary, a sound or a caption – accessed by clicking the words overlaying the images.








'Incidents (of Travel)' explores the chartered itinerary as a format of artistic encounter and an extended offline conversation between curator/s and artist/s. Online storytelling presents and documents curatorial fieldwork and a day conceived by an artist for a curator.

Conceived by Latitudes in 2012 as day-long artist-led tours around Mexico City (with five dispatches presented as part of an exhibition at Casa del Lago), 'Incidents of Travel' had sequels in 2013 in Hong Kong (online dispatches published via Twitter, Instagram, and Soundcloud) and San Francisco in 2015 (daily posts as part of Kadist's Instagram take over initiative #ArtistNotInTheStudioCuratorNotAtTheOffice).

In 2016 Kadist and Latitudes partnered in a new 'distributed' phase of 'Incidents (of Travel)' as part of Kadist Online Projects, publishing contributions from invited curators and artists working around the world.





Earlier conversations have taken place in Hobart (Tasmania), Yerevan (Armenia), Terengganu (Malaysia), Lisbon (Portugal), Suzhou (China), Jinja (Uganda) and Chicago (US). 

The first dispatch launched in April 2016 with an itinerary by curator Yesomi Umolu and artist Harold Mendez from Chicago – a day photographed by Nabiha Khan.





The second dispatch came from Jinja in Uganda, where curator Moses Serubiri invited photographer Mohsen Taha to explore Jinja's Indian architectural legacy and Idi Amin's notorious expulsion of Uganda's Asian minority in 1972.



The third episode took place while curator Yu Ji and poet Xiao Kaiyu hiked on Dong Shan (East Mountain), 130 km west of Shanghai, on a peninsula stretching into Tai Hu lake near the city of Suzhou, China.

The fourth dispatch came from Lisbon, where Galician curator Pedro de Llano visited key locations that marked the life and work of Luisa Cunha.



The fifth episode took place in April 2016, when curator Simon Soon and artist chi too visited the Malaysian North Eastern state of Terengganu, where chi spent some time in 2013, surrounded by "men and women who work(ed) multiple jobs as a fishermen, house builders, boat builders, farmers, coconut pickers, food producers, and everything else that matters."


The sixth episode narrates a walking itinerary conducted by curator Marianna Hovhannisyan with Vardan Kilichyan, Gohar Hosyan, and Anaida Verdyan in Yerevan, the capital of Armenia, documenting the transformed, disappeared, or permanently-closed art institutions in the city centre.



The seventh episode comes from Hobart, capital of Tasmania. It is narrated by curator Camila Marambio, following an itinerary devised by artist Lucy Bleach. They spent the day "encircling the outer limits of human understanding by visiting the histories, both past, and present, of attempts to reach beyond our sensory capacities through governance, technology, and reverie", and ended the day cooking at Lucy's home sharing their mutual love for quinces.

RELATED CONTENT:





Seventh episode of ‘Incidents (of Travel)’ – Dispatch by Camila Marambio and Lucy Bleach from Hobart, Tasmania

http://incidents.kadist.org/hobart.html

The seventh 'Incidents (of Travel)' dispatch comes from Hobart, capital of Tasmania. It is narrated by curator Camila Marambio, following an itinerary devised by artist Lucy Bleach. Lucy "shared her knowledge of volcanoes, lava, and magma leading (Camila) on a quest to relate local geochemical and geophysical conundrums to the expansive solar system." 

They spent the day "encircling the outer limits of human understanding by visiting the histories, both past, and present, of attempts to reach beyond our sensory capacities through governance, technology, and reverie", and ended the day cooking at Lucy's home sharing their mutual love for quinces.

Each of the 19 photographs is augmented by one or more extra assets – a brief commentary, soundscape or a caption – accessed by clicking the words which overlay the images
.



Originally conceived by Latitudes as day-long artist-led tours around Mexico City in 2012 (with five dispatches presented as part of an exhibition at Casa del Lago) 'Incidents of Travel' had sequels in 2013 in Hong Kong (online dispatches published via twitter, Instagram, and Soundcloud) and San Francisco in 2015 (daily posts on Kadist's Instagram as part of their #ArtistNotInTheStudioCuratorNotAtTheOffice take over initiative).

The project explores the chartered itinerary as a format of artistic encounter and an extended conversation between curator/s and artist/s. Online storytelling presents and documents curatorial fieldwork and an offline day conceived by an artist for a curator.
In 2016 Kadist and Latitudes partnered in a new 'distributed' phase of 'Incidents (of Travel)' as part of Kadist Online Projects. This new phase is developed as an online periodical that publishes contributions from invited curators and artists working around the world.


http://incidents.kadist.org/chicago

A series of itineraries conceived by six curators, artists or researchers — previous fellows of the seminar The Place from Where We Look (Kadist Paris, June 2015) — launched in April 2016 with an itinerary by curator Yesomi Umolu and artist Harold Mendez from Chicago – a day photographed by Nabiha Khan


http://incidents.kadist.org/jinja

The second dispatch came from Jinja in Uganda, where curator Moses Serubiri invited photographer Mohsen Taha to explore Jinja's Indian architectural legacy and Idi Amin's notorious expulsion of Uganda's Asian minority in 1972.


http://incidents.kadist.org/suzhou

The third episode took place while curator Yu Ji and poet Xiao Kaiyu hiked on Dong Shan (East Mountain), 130 km west of Shanghai, on a peninsula stretching into Tai Hu lake near the city of Suzhou, China
http://incidents.kadist.org/lisbon

The fourth dispatch came from Lisbon, where Galician curator Pedro de Llano visited key locations that marked the life and work of Luisa Cunha.
http://incidents.kadist.org/terengganu

The fifth episode took place in April 2016, when curator Simon Soon and artist chi too visited the Malaysian North Eastern state of Terengganu, where chi spent some time in 2013, surrounded by "men and women who work(ed) multiple jobs as a fishermen, house builders, boat builders, farmers, coconut pickers, food producers, and everything else that matters." 
http://incidents.kadist.org/terengganu

The sixth episode narrates a walking itinerary conducted by curator Marianna Hovhannisyan with Vardan Kilichyan, Gohar Hosyan, and Anaida Verdyan in Yerevan, the capital of Armenia, documenting the transformed, disappeared, or permanently-closed art institutions in the city centre.


RELATED CONTENT:




Cover Story – March 2018: Armenia's ghost galleries

Latitudes' home page www.lttds.org 

The March 2018 Monthly Cover Story ‘Armenia's ghost galleries’ is now up on www.lttds.org – after this month it will be archived here.

Incidents (of Travel)’ – Latitudes collaboration with Kadist – returns with a dispatch from Yerevan, Armenia. The itinerary leads us on something of a ghost tour. Photographs and reportage unearth the fragmented memories of galleries and art spaces that no longer exist. This haunted dispatch is the fruit of two-years of meticulous shared inquiry by Armenian curator Marianna Hovhannisyan (currently based in San Diego) with Vardan Kilichyan, Gohar Hosyan, and Anaida Verdyan, alumni of the former Studio College of the National Center of Aesthetics in Yerevan. 


—> Continue reading

Cover Stories' are published on a monthly basis on Latitudes' homepage and feature past, present or forthcoming projects, research, writing, artworks, exhibitions, films, objects or field trips related to our curatorial activities.


RELATED CONTENT:
  • Archive of Monthly Cover Stories
  • Cover Story – February 2018: Paradise, promises and perplexities 5 February 2018
  • Cover Story – January 2018: I'll be there for you, 2 January 2018
  • Cover Story – December 2017: "Tabet's Tapline trajectory", 4 December 2017
  • Cover Story – November 2017: "Mining negative monuments: Ângela Ferreira, Stone Free, and The Return of the Earth", 1 November 2017
  • Cover Story – October 2017: Geologic Time at Stanley Glacier 11 October 2017
  • Cover Story – September 2017: Dark Disruption. David Mutiloa's 'Synthesis' 1 September 2017
  • Cover Story – August 2017: Walden 7; or, life in Sant Just Desvern 1 August 2017
  • Cover Story – July 2017: 4.543 billion 3 July 2017
  • Cover Story – June 2017: Month Light–Absent Forms 1 June 2017
  • Cover Story – May 2017: S is for Shale, or Stuart; W is for Waterfall, or Whipps 1 May 2017
  • Cover Story – April 2017: Banff Geologic Time 3 April 2017
  • Cover Story – March 2017: Time travel with Jordan Wolfson 1 March 2017




Sixth episode of ‘Incidents (of Travel)’ – Dispatch by Marianna Hovhannisyan and students from the National Center of Aesthetics from Yerevan, Armenia

http://incidents.kadist.org/yerevan

The sixth 'Incidents (of Travel)' episode narrates a walking itinerary in Yerevan, the capital of Armenia, documenting the transformed, disappeared, or permanently-closed art institutions in the city center

The itinerary was conducted by curator Marianna Hovhannisyan with Vardan Kilichyan, Gohar Hosyan, and Anaida Verdyan — three art students from the National Center of Aesthetics, one of the oldest alternative art educational hubs in the city. 

The inquiry was based on how knowledge transmission and generational exchanges in the Armenian contemporary art field could be approached—particularly in terms of exploring the fragmented histories of its institutional work.

Each of the 15 photographs is augmented by one or more extra assets – a brief commentary or a caption –, accessed by clicking the words which overlay the images.



Marianna Hovhannisyan (Yerevan/San Diego) is a research-based curator, a Ph.D student in Art History, Theory, and Criticism at Visual Arts Department, Univerisity of California San Diego. 

Originally conceived by Latitudes as day-long artist-led tours around Mexico City in 2012 (with five dispatches presented as part of an exhibition on Latitudes' curatorial practice at Casa del Lago) 'Incidents of Travel' had sequels in 2013 in Hong Kong (online dispatches published via twitter, instagram, and soundcloud) and San Francisco in 2015 (daily posts on Kadist's Instagram as part of their #ArtistNotInTheStudioCuratorNotAtTheOffice take over initiative).


The project explores the chartered itinerary as a format of artistic encounter and an extended conversation between curator/s and artist/s. Online storytelling presents and documents curatorial fieldwork and an offline day conceived by an artist for a curator.
In 2016 Kadist and Latitudes partnered in a new 'distributed' phase of 'Incidents (of Travel)' as part of Kadist Online Projects. This new phase is developed as an online periodical that publishes contributions from invited curators and artists working around the world.


http://incidents.kadist.org/chicago

A series of itineraries conceived by six curators, artists or researchers — previous fellows of the seminar The Place from Where We Look (Kadist Paris, June 2015) — launched in April 2016 with an itinerary by curator Yesomi Umolu and artist Harold Mendez from Chicago – a day photographed by Nabiha Khan


http://incidents.kadist.org/jinja

The second dispatch came from Jinja in Uganda, where curator Moses Serubiri invited photographer Mohsen Taha to explore Jinja's Indian architectural legacy and Idi Amin's notorious expulsion of Uganda's Asian minority in 1972.


http://incidents.kadist.org/suzhou

The third episode took place while curator Yu Ji and poet Xiao Kaiyu hiked on Dong Shan (East Mountain), 130 km west of Shanghai, on a peninsula stretching into Tai Hu lake near the city of Suzhou, China
http://incidents.kadist.org/lisbon

The fourth dispatch came from Lisbon, where Galician curator Pedro de Llano visited key locations that marked the life and work of Luisa Cunha.
http://incidents.kadist.org/terengganu

The fifth episode took place in April 2016, when curator Simon Soon and artist chi too visited the Malaysian North Eastern state of Terengganu, where chi spent some time in 2013, surrounded by "men and women who work(ed) multiple jobs as a fishermen, house builders, boat builders, farmers, coconut pickers, food producers, and everything else that matters."  


RELATED CONTENT:






    Progress of Amy Balkin's ‘Today’s CO2 Spot Price’ (2009)

    Throughout the course of the ‘4.543 billion. The Matter of Matter’ exhibition at the CAPC musée in Bordeaux, the work by Amy Balkin (Baltimore, Maryland, 1967. Lives in San Francisco) ‘Today’s CO2 Spot Price’ (2009) charted the daily price of carbon dioxide emissions allowances in the world’s largest carbon market, the EU Emissions Trading Scheme. The numbering system was manually updated every morning to show the price in Euros of an entitlement to legally emit one metric tonne of CO2. Polluters—power plants or factories—receive or buy emissions allowances at auctions and trade them as needed to minimize costs.

    A product of the increasing dominance of the finance sector and the expansion of financial derivatives that emerged in the 1970s, the carbon market ‘fix’ has abstracted the qualitative problem of climate change mitigation into a commodity market based on a molecule treated as the singular cause. There is a trend towards emissions that can be lucratively ‘avoided’, while there has been little effect on structural fossil fuel dependence. In this perspective, global warming is a market failure that can be corrected by governing the atmosphere via an economic instrument with no real material or historical reference.

    Balkin's piece was presented alongside works by Pep Vidal, Lucas Ihlein, and Lara Almarcegui, all focusing on humans' calculations and quantification of nature and its progressive abstraction.

    —Latitudes 

    (Text from the exhibition guide)

    4.543 billion. The matter of matter’ took place between the June 29, 2017 and January 7, 2018 at the CAPC musée d'art contemporain, Bordeaux, France.



    General view of room 8. Photo: Latitudes/RK.


    Work by Lara Almarcegui (wall) and Pep Vidal (floor). Photo: Latitudes/RK.


    Prints by Lucas Ihlein (wall) and part of a tree by Pep Vidal (floor). Photo: Latitudes/RK.


    Below a sequence of all the social media posts (mostly from Instagrammers, more on this and other works on this Wakelet feed) showing the ongoing flux of its price—which has ranged from 4,84 Eur per tonne of CO2 during the installation of the piece, to 4,93 Eur on the opening day (29 June 2017), to the last picture on record showing a whopping 7,76 Eur per tonne of CO2.

    We would like to thank the Kadist in San Francisco for having given us the opportunity to, after years of corresponding over email, finally meet Amy during a residency in September 2015. Her "Incidents of Travel" day on several locations in and outside San Francisco (download the specially-commissioned itinerary here) was invaluable towards the conceptualization of this exhibition.




    During installation of the work. Photo: Latitudes for @capc 



    Taken on the opening day, 29 June 2017. Photo: Latitudes/RK. 



    Taken on 2 July 2017. Photo: Latitudes. 




    Image published in the Sudouest newspaper on 12 July 2017 showing 04,98 EUR/tC02.



    Taken on 13 July 2017 by Hélène Lucien. 


    Taken on 16 July 2017 by Adriano Pedrosa. 


    Taken on 2 August 2017 by Lena Joreis. 


    Taken on 19 August 2017 by Semi-Sans.


    Taken on 22 August 2017 by Mads Freund Brunse.


    Taken on 12 October 2017 by Tomas Mendizabal.


    Taken on 17 October 2017 by Margareth.


    Taken on 20 November 2017 by @matlegall. 


    Taken on 2 November 2017 by @Elénie. 


    Taken on 30 November 2017 by @mllelahaye 


    Taken on 1 December 2017 by @mommou.elle 


    Taken on January 7, 2018 by Alice Cavender. 


    RELATED CONTENT: 

    • 4.543 billion. The Matter of Matter” exhibition 
    • Archive of social networks posts related to "4.543 billion" 
    • Photo gallery of the exhibition 
    • CAPC website (French, English, Spanish) http://www.capc-bordeaux.fr/programme/4543-milliards
    • Cover Story—December 2017: "Tabet's Tapline trajectory" 4 December 2017
    • Alfred Roll's 1878 "The Old Quarryman" exchanged with Alfred Smith's "The Grave Docks" (1884) in the exhibition "4.543 billion" at the CAPC musée 3 November 2017
    • Cover Story—November 2017: "Mining negative monuments: Ângela Ferreira, Stone Free, and The Return of the Earth" 1 November 2017
    • 15 November 2017, 4:30–8pm: 'The Return of the Earth. Ecologising art history in the Anthropocene' study day at the CAPC musée, Bordeaux 24 October 201
    • Cover Story – July 2017: 4.543 billion 3 July 2017
    • Cover Story – May 2017: S is for Shale, or Stuart; W is for Waterfall, or Whipps 1 May 2017
    • SAVE THE DATE: 29 June, 19h. Private view of the exhibition "4.543 billion. The matter of matter" at the CAPC musée d'art contemporain de Bordeaux 30 May 2017 
    • Cover Story – May 2016: Material histories – spilling the beans at the CAPC musée d’art contemporain de Bordeaux 10 May 2016
    • Second research trip to Bordeaux 16 July 2016





      Latitudes' "out of office" 2016–2017 season

       Downtime for physical and mental "reparations" begins. 
      Photos: Latitudes (except where noted otherwise).

      It's the end of the 2016–17 season, at last. Following a Latitudes' tradition we mark the summer downtime with an "out of office" post (see the 2008-9, 2009-10, 2010-11, 2011-12, 2012–13, 2013–14, 2014–15, 2015–16 ones) with a series of "behind the scenes" and "making of" moments from the year gone by. Here are some glimpses of the past season, from September 2016 to July 2017.

      We'll be back in September 2017, when we'll be leading a residency programme at Banff Centre in the Canadian Rockies!

       
      15 September
      2016: The 2016–17 season started with glitter and sparkle as Antoni Hervàs' "The Mystery of Caviria" exhibition opened in La Capella. The eight chapters of his complex scenario revolved around the legend of Jason and the Argonauts’ expedition in search of the Golden Fleece. The spectacular scenography took as its point of origin the section of the tale in which the expedition led by Jason stops for a few months in Lemnos, the island of fire, in the northern part of the Aegean Sea. Taking this fragment, Hervàs explored the transformist and genre-bending possibilities of drawing, a medium that enabled him to unite two mythologies: the Cabeirian rites of Classical Greece and figures from Barcelona’s dwindling cabaret scene. Photos of the exhibition here.

      Toni's exhibition was the focus of the September and November Cover Story series on our home page, archived here.



      Photos above: Latitudes and Toni Hervàs.

      18 September 2016: More sparkle awaited on the former site of the Copacabana club and nearby frontón court. The former is currently a parking lot used by the Department of Culture of the Catalan Government. The lone castanets master Juan de la Cruz el Rosillo interpreted a moving repertoire of popular Spanish coplas. For the second part of the event, the audience walked a few meters up Las Ramblas towards the frontón, where Gerard López, Senior Spanish Champion in male rhythmic gymnastics, interpreted newly-commissioned choreography with specially-produced music by Norman Bambi, while wearing a Hervàs-designed garment (exhibited as part of his exhibition).


      20 September 2016: Just as we are catching our breath from the memorable exhibition opening and the first event related to Toni's exhibition, street banners popped up around the city announcing the second Barcelona Gallery Weekend.


      26–28 September 2016: Installation of "Composiciones" projects, five site-specific commissions for the second iteration of the Barcelona Gallery Weekend. Three days of intense preparations! Curated by Latitudes for the second time (see 2015 edition), the project further explored Barcelona as a rich fabric of the historic and the contemporary, the unfamiliar and the conspicuous.

       Above and below: Lola Lasurt at the Biblioteca Pública Arús. 
      (Above) Lúa and Mariana admiring the serendipitous finding of "El Espejo equivocado" painting at the Club Billar Barcelona. An almost spooky, yet incredibly fitting find. 

      (Above) With Rafel Bianchi and Gina Giménez unpacking Gina's works and spreading them around the former textile factory Can Trinxet, L’Hospitalet de Llobregat. 

      Silkscreened outfits for the runners finally ready to be worn throughout the weekend. Photos: Robert Llimós.

      Runners pass by Galeria dels Àngels. Photo: Gabriela Moragas.
       Testing the resistance of a pair of Levi's jeans in preparation for Wilfredo Prieto "Pantalones Rotos" at the Mounted Unit of the Barcelona City Police.


      29 September–2 October 2016: Opening and guided visits around the five "Composiciones" interventions by Lúa Coderch (at the Club Billar Barcelona); Regina Giménez (at the former textile factory Can Trinxet, L’Hospitalet de Llobregat); Lola Lasurt (at the Biblioteca Pública Arús); Robert Llimós (connecting all the participating galleries) and Wilfredo Prieto (at the Mounted Unit of the Barcelona City Police) in unique sites across the neighbourhoods of the city. Their projects offered moments of intermission, intimacy and bewilderment throughout the weekend, highlighting some lesser-known aspects of the city’s cultural heritage and municipal life.

      Storify archive of social networks posts. Photographs here.

      Guided tour by Lúa Coderch in her intervention at the Club Billar Barcelona.

      Guided tour by Gina Giménez to ARCOwalks group in Can Trinxet. 

       Speaking for the radio at the Mounted Unit of the Barcelona City Police.

       
       TV presenter Josep Paris modeled Robert Llimós' 1972 updated runners design during the weekly cultural TV programme Àrtic. Photo: Àrtic.

       Double spread on "Composiciones" in the cultural supplement "Tendències" by national newspaper El Mundo. Photo: Vanessa Graell.

      26 October 2016: Launch of Rasmus Nilausen book "Soups & Symptoms" at Múltiplos, which includes an essay by Max Andrews. For the event, Rasmus and Max served up a carrot soup (potage crécy) and requested questions from friends, family and collaborators which would be accepted as long as they fitted onto Jacob's Cream cracker.

      The catalogue was produced thanks to the funding from Premi Art Nou 2015, Art Barcelona, Associació de Galeries d’Art Contemporani in collaboration with the Institut de Cultura de Barcelona, García Galeria (Madrid) and Estrany de la Mota (Barcelona). It can be purchased in La Central.

      Max and Rasmus prepare the carrots for a large pot of Potage Crécy, questions are written on a Jacob's Cream crackers (that will later accompany the soup) and book launch at Múltiplos.


      3 November 2016: Runway show at La Capella with some costumes from the 1980s and 90s designed by actor and impresario Victor Guerrero. Part of the activities programmed on the occasion of the exhibition.

      Photos: Latitudes.

      8 November 2016: Mariana Cánepa Luna's review on Ana Jotta's exhibition published on art-agenda, focused on "her ongoing series 'Notas de rodapé' [Footnotes] [which] provide a key to understanding the semantic complexity of her work. It comprises a selection of the eclectic bits and pieces which Jotta has gathered for decades and that coexist in her studio alongside works that she has fabricated." Continue reading


      23-24 November 2016: Latitudes participated in a two-day summit "You are such a curator!" organised by the Curatorial Programme of De Appel, Amsterdam. With contributions by Mira Asriningtyas, Lucrezia Calabro Visconti, Renata Cervetto, Mateo Chacon-Pino, Galerie (Adriano Wilfert Jensen and Simon Asencio), Natasha Hoare, Kati Ilves, Prem Krishnamurthy, Inga Lace, Latitudes (Max Andrews and Mariana Cánepa Luna), Ariane Loze, Shona Mei Findlay, Fadwa Naamna, Kim Nguyen, Emma Ines Panza, Aneta Rostkowska and Kuba Woynarowski, Chris Sharp, Niels Van Tomme, Huib Haye van der Werf, and others. We took the opportunity to extend our stay on the occasion of the Amsterdam Art Weekend 2016, which included the opening of Jordan Wolfson's at the Stedelijk and the Open Studios at the Rijksakademie.


      Latitudes' presention "Following the Holy Greyhound" reflected "on the disinterment of a sculpture from 1991 – part of an exhibition by the Venezuelan artist José Antonio Hernández-Díez curated by Latitudes at MACBA, Barcelona, earlier this year – and their approach to a group exhibition in preparation for CAPC Musée d’art contemporain de Bordeaux in Summer 2017. Full report here.

        Photos: Carina Erdmann/De Appel.

      November-December 2016: Two of Latitudes' projects ("Composiciones" commissions for the Barcelona Gallery Weekend and "El misterio de Caviria" by Antoni Hervàs) are shortlisted for the best exhibition of the year by the TV culture programme Tria33. The audience casts their votes online until January. Antoni Hervàs won with 40% of the audience votes. "Composiciones" ends in the third position with 17% of the votes.



      January 2017: Issue of frieze magazines includes Max Andrews' "Salon Selectives" text in the Opinion section, discussing "How open are open calls?":

      "While competition organizers typically trumpet the volume and cosmopolitanism of applications received an ebullient endorsement, others may rue the sheer amount of collectively wasted effort made by the also-rans. (In Spain, Bilbao-based studio Taller de Casquería estimated that the hours involved in the 1,715 submissions received for the Guggenheim Helsinki open call for designs represented over €18 million worth of speculative work.) In Gary Hustwit’s 2011 documentary film, Urbanized, Rem Koolhaas stated that such competitions were a ‘complete drain of intelligence’, inviting mass creative thinking with the guarantee that the vast majority of it will be discarded. This addiction in the field of architecture appears to be gaining traction in contemporary art as a means not only of generating exhibitions but of programming institutions."

      The text was the January Cover Story on our website.


      25 January 2017: Presentation of Antoni Hervàs' La Capella publication at the Antic Teatre in the background of one of his scenographic drawings dedicated to Gilda Love (this was the second time this had been displayed in this space, following the recording in May last year of Gilda performing, a video later included in the exhibition). The evening was followed by the "Desplume" monthly cabaret show.




      16 February 2017: A moving evening seeing Toni Hervàs receive the Premi Ciutat de Barcelona for visual arts exhibition of the year at the Sala de Consell de Cent in the Barcelona City Hall. The jury recognised "the artist's research in linking Greek mythology with the Barcelona cabaret scene from the 1960s–80s and for the recuperation of its vitality."

      Toni receiving the award from Barcelona mayor Ada Colau and during his speech. Photos: Latitudes.

      1 March 2017: Launch of the fourth 'Incidents (of Travel)' episode, in which Galician curator Pedro de Llano met Lisboeta artist Luisa Cunha in Lisbon. Their offline day took place in early December and went through key locations in the artist's life – from Ar.Co, the School of Visual Arts in Almada where she enrolled at age thirty-seven, to the Largo da Academia de Belas Artes in Chiado, where she conceived a public project that never materialised.
      Above: captures from the project website.

      2 March 2017: Opening of Joana Hurtado Matheu's "Nostalgic Dissidence" exhibition mentored by Latitudes as part of the Barcelona Producció 2016 season. Repairs and conservation work in the Baroque cupola had delayed the opening by three months, so we were all pleased the day finally arrived. 

        Working on the exhibition layout.

      Francesco Arena's "Mare della tranquillità" (2013) is activated by a performer. "An old wooden table, taken from the family dining room, has been cut into four pieces to form the corners of a much bigger new table. Enlarged with inserts of metal, its size evokes the table on which, on May 7, 1945, the signing of the German surrender ended World War II in Europe. The work is the support for a participative action which consists of walking back and forth on the five-metre table a total of 155 km, the length of the Berlin Wall. Every day during the two months of the exhibition someone will get up on the table and, wearing shoes that have never touched the ground and holding a tally counter, walk from one end to the other 596 times." (exhibition wall label by the curator)

      Photos: Pep Herrero/La Capella and Marc Llibre Roig.

      January 2017: The artist Alexandra Navratil pots an image of the work she will present in the forthcoming exhibition "4.543 billion" due to open June 29 at the CAPC musée in Bordeaux.


      22–24 March 2017: Third trip to Bordeaux. Packed with meetings. Three months to go to the opening of "4.543 billion" exhibition. In two weeks deadline to submit the texts for the gallery guide. 

       Running through each work through our sketch up exhibition rendering with the curatorial, collections, registrar, press and installation teams.

      23 March 2017: Meanwhile in Barcelona, Toni Hervàs wins yet another award – for the best exhibition of the year, and given by the Catalan Association of Art Critics. 

      Hervàs during the award ceremony. Photo: ACCA.

      April 2017: A bit of a website refresh – these things are so darn tedious yet they feel so good when they are done and dusted!


      26 April 2017: Fifth 'Incidents (of Travel)' episode online narrating the encounter between curator Simon Soon and artist Chi Too. Their offline day took place in April 2016, when they visited the Malaysian state of Terengganu, where chi spent some time in 2013, surrounded by "men and women who work(ed) multiple jobs as a fishermen, house builders, boat builders, farmers, coconut pickers, food producers, and everything else that matters."

      'Incidents (of Travel)' is a chartered day-long itinerary as an alternative to the standard studio-visit, inviting an extended conversation between a curator and an artist. Previous destinations have included Chicago, US; Jinja, Uganda; Suzhou, China; and Lisbon, Portugal. Produced by Kadist; photographs and video by Awang Ketut; site built by The Present Group.



      Above: captures from the project website.

      3 May 2017: Conversation with Korean-born, Berlin-based artist Haegue Yang at the Fundació Tàpies, Barcelona. The evening discussion analysed Yang's practice from the perspective of historical development and cyclic fluctuations, asked, as phrased by sociologist and economist Giovanni Arrighi – what is accumulative, what is cyclical, what is new? 

      Photos: Fundació Han Nefkens.

      May 2017: After three intense weeks of jury process, eighteen selected projects of Barcelona Producció 2017 grant scheme are announced. We begin the year-long mentoring process of three projects out of the seventeen selected projects this year as part of the Barcelona Producció 2017 production grants. David Mutiloa's SYNTHESIS (18 July–25 September 2017) is first to occupy La Capella's 15th-century exhibition space. The other two projects mentored by Latitudes are a publication by Anna Moreno and an exhibition "Artengo2000" at the small exhibition space by Camille Orny and Magda Vaz.

       Jury searching for a solid wifi spot to watch video documentation sent by an applicant.

      12 June 2017, in Basel: Max Andrews of Latitudes contributed the essay "C-H-R-I-S-T-O-P-H-E-R-K-N-O-W-L-E-S. SO LISTEN UP" about the spoken-word works, "typings", poetry and paintings of Christopher Knowles. The publication is made to accompany his solo presentation in the stand of NoguerasBlanchard gallery at Liste art fair in Basel. The exquisite short-run publication is designed and printed by Barcelona-based independent publishers and Riso printers Do The Print. Read on.

       Photos: Latitudes

      Photo via @gal_NB


      12 June, in Barcelona: Following the announcement of the awardees of the 2017–18 season of Barcelona Producció production grants, we visit David Mutiloa's temporary studio in Hangar. Mutiloa is the first artist to open the season and his exhibition "SYNTHESIS" will take place in the central nave of La Capella from July 18. 

      "Using sculpture, video projections and human presence, David Mutiloa’s exhibition Synthesis proposes that this condition has led to the appearance of pharmacologically managed depression, “an illness of responsibility”. It has also induced a terrible form of boredom – the spectre of both the boundless outsourcing of undesirable labour to the developing world and automation leading to a world without work. – Text from the gallery guide, written by Latitudes (pdf here). 

      Here is a short video documenting the exhibition.

       Photos: Latitudes

       
      19 June–2 July: We're off to Bordeaux for the installation and opening of "4.543 billion. The matter of matter" exhibition in ten days. After two years of preparation, it's a truly exciting moment to see it all coming together.  

      —> Press release here
      —> Ongoing archive of social media posts here.

      Lucy Skaer's 26 coal and resin sculptures after Brancusi's 26 different editions of "Bird in Space".

      Deciding the layout of Félix Arnaudin's incredible suite of photographs kindly lent by the Musée d'Aquitaine Bordeaux.

      Photovoltaic panels charging the batteries that power Nicholas Mangan's double video projection "Ancient Lights" (2015). 

       Anne Garde's photos documenting Richard Serra's "Threats of Hell" (1990) production from Dillinger Hütter (Germany) to its exhibition at the CAPC nave, to its current location at a private collector home on the banks of the Garonne, where it changed its name to a happier "Hopes of Paradise".
       Part of the CAPC installation team having a coffee break enjoying Stéphane's awesome chocolate cake.
       Rayyane Tabet's mobile pieces arriving from Hamburg at the CAPC.
      Registrar thick checklist file.
       François measuring Lara Almarcegui's works before placing them on the wall.

       Construction of the warehouse and jetty. Statements of works by engineer and architect Claude Deschamps.
       Christophe moving the 600kg rock by Hubert Duprat to the entrance.
       Pascal lighting the exhibition.

      Christina Hemauer and Roman Keller stretching their new work "Untitled (Blue)" (2017), for a work focused on indigo and colonial trade. 

      Christina Hemauer and Terence Gower listening to Pep Vidal explaining his sculpture work "19-metre tree cut in 7 equal volumes" (2015). 

       One of the many guided visits for press, staff, friends of the museum during the opening days. Photo: Latitudes/RK.

      11–14 July 2017: Installation of "SYNTHESIS" in La Capella. David Mutiloa's solo exhibition is the first of the 2017–18 season of Barcelona Producció. Opening on July 18, on view until September 25.

      "In the modern office workplace, spatial design and brand communication have evolved in step with novel notions of management, business efficiency and a labour market that progressively favours flexibility and adaptability. The typical Western office worker – their physiology as well as their psychology – has also been overhauled. Twentieth-century time-and-motion studies first standardised and rationalised the salaried worker’s time and space. And today the twenty-first-century worker is increasingly a co-working independent contractor who navigates an entirely dissolved working-week structure, continuous competitive ‘disruption’ and the so-called ‘gig economy’." – Text by Latitudes from the exhibition sheet.

      Scheme to help assemble the platform.

       Artist at work.



      24–26 July 2017: Trip to Copenhagen to visit the impressive solo exhibition by John Kørner, "Altid Mange Problemer" at Kunsthal Charlottenborg, curated by Marie Nipper—the largest exhibition of his works to date. Max Andrews of Latitudes has been invited to contribute an essay for his forthcoming monograph published by Roulette Russe which is due to come out in November 2017. Max has previously written on John's work for his 2006 exhibition "Problems" at Victoria Miro Gallery in London. Our first visit to Copenhagen to see John's work was precisely the subject of our first blog post in September 2006!

      Everything in Copenhagen seemed to have turned yellow – we knew John's love for the colour (first image below), but also Mark Leckey's exhibition at the x-room of the Statens Museum fur Kunst, seemed to have been inspired by "the Nyboder yellow" hue – the historic row house district of former Naval barracks in Copenhagen. 


      Mark Leckey's exhibition ‘He Thrusts his fists against the posts but still insists he sees the ghosts’ recreated the ramps underneath the M53 motorway bridge in Ellesmere Port. 

      Example of the "Nyboder yellow" hue – the historic row house district of former Naval barracks in Copenhagen. 

      27 July 2017: Visit Ricardo Bofill's Walden7 and his nearby studio Taller de Arquitectura with Anna Moreno. Moreno was awarded a grant of Barcelona Producció 2017 to produce the publication "The Drowned Giant", a project focusing on a performance–happening staged by Bofill in 1970 to promote his unrealised architectural project La Ciudad en el Espacio in Moratalaz (Madrid). The publication will be launched in late November 2017 and is mentored by Latitudes. As part of Moreno's ongoing research on Bofill's practice, she has been living in Walden7 for the past month in order to carry research for a forthcoming commission for the Spring 2018 exhibition "Beehave" at the Fundació Miró. 


       (Above) Taller de arquitectura studio. (Below) Walden7 in Sant Just Desvern (Barcelona).



      At the time of writing, we are frantically preparing for what will be an intense September. On September 10 we'll travel to Banff, where Latitudes will be Lead Faculty of the month-long residency programme "Geologic Time" at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity which will bring together 10 curators/artists/writers from around the world to discuss geological formations and timescales, while speculating about a more expansive and longer-term view of art, exhibitions, and their institutions. We will be “thinking with” geology (beyond the depiction of the landscape) as a potential way to consider non-conventional, deep-time perspectives on curating, exhibition making, programming, and fieldwork within contemporary art. 

       Julius Schoppe (1795–1868), “Illustration of giant stone near the Rauenschen Mountains near Fürstenwalde”, c. 1827. Public domain – Wikimedia Commons.

      RELATED CONTENT:




      Fifth episode of 'Incidents (of Travel)' – Dispatch by Simon Soon and chi too from Terengganu, Malaysia


      The fifth 'Incidents (of Travel)' episode narrates an encounter between curator Simon Soon and artist chi too. Their offline day took place in April 2016, when they visited the Malaysian North Eastern state of Terengganu, where chi spent some time in 2013, surrounded by "men and women who work(ed) multiple jobs as a fishermen, house builders, boat builders, farmers, coconut pickers, food producers, and everything else that matters."


      Each of the 16 photographs and videos is augmented by one or more extra assets (a brief commentary, a caption or a soundscape), accessed by clicking the words which overlay the images. 


      Originally conceived by Latitudes as day-long artist-led tours around Mexico City in 2012 (with five dispatches presented as part of an exhibition on Latitudes' curatorial practice at Casa del Lago) 'Incidents of Travel' had sequels in 2013 in Hong Kong (online dispatches published via twitter, instagram, and soundcloud) and San Francisco in 2015 (daily posts on Kadist' instagram as part of their #ArtistNotInTheStudioCuratorNotAtTheOffice take over initiative).


      The project explores the chartered itinerary as a format of artistic encounter and an extended conversation between curator/s and artist/s. Online storytelling presents and documents curatorial fieldwork and an offline day conceived by an artist for a curator.

      Since April 2016 Kadist and Latitudes partnered in a new 'distributed' phase of 'Incidents (of Travel)' as part of Kadist Online Projects. This new phase is developed as an online periodical that publishes regular contributions from invited curators and artists working around the world.
      The series inaugurated in April 2016 with an itinerary from curator Yesomi Umolu and artist Harold Mendez from Chicago – their tour was photographed by Nabiha Khan. The second dispatch came from Jinja in Uganda, where curator Moses Serubiri invited photographer Mohsen Taha to explore Jinja's Indian architectural legacy and Idi Amin's notorious expulsion of Uganda's Asian minority in 1972. The third episode took place while curator Yu Ji and poet Xiao Kaiyu hiked on Dong Shan (East Mountain), 130 km west of Shanghai, on a peninsula stretching into Tai Hu lake near the city of Suzhou, China. The fourth dispatch came from Lisbon, where Galician curator Pedro de Llano visited key locations that marked the life and work of Luisa Cunha.

      Forthcoming: Marianna Hovhannisyan (Yerevan).
        

      RELATED CONTENT





      Fourth episode of 'Incidents (of Travel)' – Dispatch by Pedro de Llano and Luisa Cunha from Lisbon, Portugal


      The fourth 'Incidents (of Travel)' episode comes from Lisbon, Portugal, where Galician curator Pedro de Llano met Lisboeta artist Luisa Cunha. Their offline day took place in early December and went through key locations in the artist's life – from Ar.Co, the School of Visual Arts in Almada where she enrolled at age thirty seven, to the Largo da Academia de Belas Artes in Chiado, where she conceived a public project that never materialised. 

      Each of the 23 photographs in the sequence is augmented by one or more extra assets (a brief commentary, a caption or a soundscape), and is accessed by clicking the words which overlay the images. 


      Originally conceived by Latitudes as day-long artist-led tours around Mexico City in 2012 (with five dispatches presented as part of an exhibition on Latitudes' curatorial practice at Casa del Lago) 'Incidents of Travel' had sequels in 2013 in Hong Kong (online dispatches published via twitter, instagram, and soundcloud) and San Francisco in 2015 (daily posts on Kadist' instagram as part of their #ArtistNotInTheStudioCuratorNotAtTheOffice initiative). 

      The project explores the chartered itinerary as a format of artistic encounter and an extended conversation between curator/s and artist/s. Online storytelling presents and documents curatorial fieldwork and an offline day conceived by an artist for a curator.

      Since April 2016 Kadist and Latitudes partnered in a new 'distributed' phase of 'Incidents (of Travel)' as part of Kadist Online Projects. This new phase is developed as an online periodical that publishes regular contributions from invited curators and artists working around the world. 

      The series inaugurated with an itinerary from curator Yesomi Umolu and artist Harold Mendez from Chicago – their tour was photographed by Nabiha Khan. The second dispatch came from Jinja in Uganda, where curator Moses Serubiri invited photographer Mohsen Taha to explore Jinja's Indian architectural legacy and Idi Amin's notorious expulsion of Uganda's Asian minority in 1972. The third episode took place while curator Yu Ji and poet Xiao Kaiyu hiked on Dong Shan (East Mountain), 130 km west of Shanghai, on a peninsula stretching into Tai Hu lake near the city of Suzhou, China.
      Forthcoming contributions: Simon Soon (Kuala Lumpur / Sydney); Natalia Zuluaga (Pereira / Miami) and Marianna Hovhannisyan (Yerevan), all fellows who participated in the seminar ‘The Place From Where We Look’ at Kadist Paris in June 2015.  

      RELATED CONTENT:




      Third episode of 'Incidents (of Travel)' – Dispatch by Yu JI and Xiao Kaiyu reporting from Suzhou, China


      As part of Kadist Online Projects, Kadist and Latitudes partnered in a new 'distributed' phase of 'Incidents (of Travel)'. The new phase is developed as an online periodical that publishes regular contributions from curators and artists working around the world. 

      Originally conceived by Latitudes as day-long artist-led tours around Mexico City (2012, with dispatches presented as part of an exhibition at Casa del Lago) – followed by Hong Kong (2013, online dispatches via twitter, instagram, and soundcloud) and San Francisco (2015, online dispatches via daily instagram posts) – 'Incidents (of Travel)' explores the chartered itinerary as a format of artistic encounter and an extended conversation between curator/s and artist/s. Online storytelling presents and documents curatorial fieldwork and an offline day conceived by an artist for a curator.


      The third 'Incidents (of Travel)' episode comes from Suzhou, China, where artist and curator Yu Ji met poet Xiao Kaiyu. Their offline day took place in April 2016, when they embarked on a hike on Dong Shan (East Mountain), 130 km west of Shanghai, on a peninsula stretching into Tai Hu lake near the city of Suzhou.


      Each of the 12 photographs in the sequence is augmented by one or more extra assets: a brief commentary, a caption or a soundscape, and is accessed by clicking the words which overlay the images.

      The series inaugurated with an itinerary from curator Yesomi Umolu and artist Harold Mendez from Chicago – their tour was photographed by Nabiha Khan. The second dispatch came from Jinja in Uganda, where curator Moses Serubiri invited photographer Mohsen Taha to explore Jinja's Indian architectural legacy and Idi Amin's notorious expulsion of Uganda's Asian minority in 1972.


      Forthcoming contributions: Marianna Hovhannisyan (Yerevan), Simon Soon (Kuala Lumpur / Sydney) and Natalia Zuluaga (Pereira / Miami), all fellows who participated in the seminar ‘The Place From Where We Look’ at Kadist Paris in June 2015. 


      RELATED CONTENT:





      Latitudes' "out of office" 2015–2016 season

      "CLOSED. We open when we arrive, close when we leave, and if you come and we're not here, we just didn't coincide."

      The end of the season is approaching and high summer is looming. Following Latitudes tradition we mark the summer break not by presenting a memo of activities per se, but with an "out of office" post (see the 2008-9, 2009-10, 2010-11, 2011-12, 2012–13, 2013–14, 2014–15 versions) with a series of 'behind the scenes' photos revisiting moments from the year gone by. So here are some glimpses of the past season, starting September 2015 to July 2016. See you in September!

      In order to be conducive to freedom of interaction, the ‘Near-Future Artworlds Curatorial Disruption Foresight Group’ meetings have been held under the Chatham House Rule: This allows participants to express personal views, to listen, reflect and gather insights with a clear distinction from the position of their employers and/or the policies of any associated organization. Participation is expected, but there will be no resolutions issued, no votes are undertaken, and no policy statements proposed. Only this photo was taken.

      Latitudes 2015–16 season started with a residency at Kadist, San Francisco (26 August–9 September) during which time we had the opportunity to develop several projects. Three artist-led tours with SF-based artists Amy Balkin, Rick & Megan Prelinger and Will Brown were part of our ongoing series 'Incidents of Travel' (see 2012 in Mexico City, 2013 in Hong Kong and most recent 2016 online incarnation). We took over Kadist social media with an instagram residency and contributed to the online programme 'One Sentence Exhibition'.

      Furthermore on August 29, we convened the second ‘Near-Future Artworlds Curatorial Disruption Foresight Group’ at Kadist, a "by-invitation meeting bringing together individuals and expertise from the Bay Area with an active interest in institutional prototyping and emergent usership" initially presented in May 2015 for the
      International Curatorial Retreat in Bari, Italy.

      The workshop is "a forum for informal dialogue about megatrends and the future of contemporary art institutions. In the San Francisco iteration, an emphasis was put on cross-pollination between design thinking and curatorial thinking. Participants also discussed, among other things, the notion of the post-disciplinary, and the question of appropriate speeds, scale or periodicities of institutions."

        Photo: Arash Fayed.

      September 8: Our last activity in the Bay Area was a session with first-year participants of the MA Curatorial Practice at the California College of the Arts (CCA). We briefly introduced our curatorial practice and invited the new students to imagine the governance and daily operations of a range of institutions – a remote residency facility, a commissioning institution, and an annual festival.


      (Above and below) BAF technical team and artist Daniel Steegmann Mangrané installing the sound piece “Surucuá, Teque-teque, Arara” (2012) at the Umbracle (shade house), Parc de la Ciutadella. One of the "Composiciones" commissions for the Barcelona Gallery Weekend.

      September 25: Max Andrews of Latitudes participates in the symposium "The Shock of Victory" held at CCA Glasgow. Meanwhile, installation is well underway for the first Barcelona Gallery Weekend, for which Latitudes devised a special programme of five artists' commissions.

       (Above and below) David Bestué browsing and choosing ceramic pieces and moulds in the attic at the Cosme Toda factory, for his "Composiciones" installation.

      (Above and below) Jordi Mitjà discussing his work to the team at the Museu Geològic del Seminari during the installation of his "Composiciones" piece.
      Rasmus Nilausen lights up Pere Llobera's drawing in dust, part of their joint "Composiciones" adventure.

      (Above) Second seminar at the Biblioteca del Campo Freudiano de Barcelona, project by Dora García for "Composiciones".

        (Above) Display of the books selected by Dora García from the holdings of the Biblioteca del Campo Freudiano de Barcelona.

      'Composiciones' received some great write-ups – including by Frederic Montornés and by Jörg Heiser at frieze magazine. We also gathered hundreds of tweets, Instagram shots and press material on this Storify.  

       Board announcing the seminar and public talk.

      Closed-door seminar at Tabakalera. Photo: Consonni. 

      Public presentation of Latitudes' projects at Tabakalera. Photo: Consonni.

      November 2015: Latitudes travelled to Donostia's recently opened Tabakalera. We were invited by LaPublika's programme, created by Consonni, to lead a two-day seminar and public lecture around artists working in the public sphere.


      Moments before starting the ESP people assembly at Birmingham's Eastside Projects.

      On November 15 Latitudes convened the third iteration of the 'Near-Future Artworlds Curatorial Disruption Foresight Group', this time in Birmingham's Eastside Projects. This "forum for informal dialogue about megatrends and the future of contemporary art institutions" collectively imagined a ‘What if?’ – a post-apocalyptic scenario in which the entire art ecology of Birmingham had to be regrown from the ground up, an exercise that would help define and identify which are the most urgent organisations, facilities and tools.

      International Summit Synapse 1 at New Rex of the National Theatre of Greece. 'Session II: Rethinking Institutions': (from left to right) Leo Panitch, Maria Hlavajova, Adam Szymczyk, Amalia Zepou (moderator), Hilary Wainwright, Emily Pethick, Latitudes (Max Andrews & Mariana Cánepa Luna) © Eva Galatsanou. 

        Second-day assembly at the Bargeion Hotel. 

      Shortly after, on 18–19 November Latitudes participated in the OMONOIA summit which began the Athens Biennale 2015–2017. For a short report see the Cover Story of December 2015 and this blog entry.

      December 2015: Mariana joined Hangar's new Board of Trustees as its Secretary, a responsibility she will fulfil for the next three years. 

      December 4: Participation in the BAR module: Curating the space / Space for curating open public conversation with Sofía Hernández Chong Cuy, Carles Guerra, Michy Marxuach and BAR module participants. 
      (Above and below) Courtesy: BAR Project.  Photos: Eva Carasol. 

      January 2016: After an intense jury process in January, we began the year-long mentoring process of three exhibition projects out of the nine selected projects as part of the 2016 season's BCN Producció 2016.



      The first project Latitudes mentored was by Pau Magrané/PLOM who turned the Espai Cub, a 3x3x3 metre white cube, into "a sound stage/instrument, an echo chamber hosting different screenings and objects to be played by PLOM at the opening". The two other projects Latitudes is mentoring are by Antoni Hervàs (September 15) and a group exhibition "La dissidència nostàlgica" by curator Joana Hurtado Matheu (December 1). 

      From January onwards: Preparations for the five projects produced in the context of the second edition of the Barcelona Gallery Weekend. Studio visits, site visits, project proposals, budget and production planning, taking measurements...

      May 2016: Regina Giménez and Rafel G. Bianchi taking measures of Can Trinxet's walls, a former 19th Century textile factory in L'Hospitalet de Llobregat. 
      March 2016: visiting Robert Llimós's studio in Sant Pere neighbourhood.

       Lola Lasurt doing some tests positioning her paintings at the Biblioteca Pública Arús.

      February 2016: Trip to Arles to attend the 'How Institutions Think' symposium at the LUMA Foundation, this time not participating but listening and reporting. Read Max Andrews' report on the frieze blog.


      Besides the reportage from the Arles conference, Max also published other reviews in Frieze magazine as one of its team of contributing editors: Xavier Ribas at ProjecteSD (Barcelona); Joachim Koester at BlueProject Foundation (Barcelona); Alexandre Estrela at the Museo Reina Sofía (Madrid) and Critic's Guide: Barcelona highlighting some of the interesting shows in the city on frieze website. He has also contributed the text "Soups & Symptoms" for a forthcoming publication of Barcelona-based Danish painter Rasmus Nilausen. 
      View of Francesc Ruiz, “Correos,” garcía galería, Madrid, 2016. Courtesy of garcía galería, Madrid. Photo: Roberto Ruiz.

      On February 25, Mariana Cánepa Luna's review of Francesc Ruiz's exhibition at garcía | galería, Madrid, was published online on art-agenda: "Ruiz’s second solo show at Madrid’s garcía galería delves into the visual communication of one of Spain’s most iconic institutions, the Sociedad Estatal Correos y Telégrafos—the national postal service, commonly known as Correos—whose graphic identity was created in 1977 by Spanish designer and artist José María Cruz Novillo (b. 1936)." continue reading...


      Mariana also contributed to the publication "Great Expectations: Prospects for the Future of Curatorial Education" edited by Leigh Markopoulos and published by the California College of the Arts and The Banff Centre – with some insightful questions by Banff Centre Walter Phillips Gallery curator Peta Rake.

      Miquel from MACBA's AV team checking the connections behind the monitor that presented 'Houdini' (1991) – one of the most challenging works in the exhibition for the technical team as it meant dismantling a 40-year-old TV and submerging the front part into water.

      March 2016: Installation begins! After over year and half of preparation, the exhibition "I Will Fear No Evil" opened at Convent dels Àngels del MACBA on March 17, 2016. Two busy weeks of installation in the Convent dels Àngels space preceded the opening. Many press tours, exhibition reviews, photo and video recordings, guided visits, film screenings, and music events followedthey're all archived here!

       Alex from MACBA's restoration department scraping the old silicone off the acrylic box containing "San Guinefort" (1991).
      Tria33, a programme broadcast at Canal 33, came to film during the installation.
       Lightbox of "El Resplandor de la Santa Conjunción aleja a los demonios" in progress, a piece from 1991, exhibited for the first time in the Sala RG in Caracas, and also reconstructed for the present exhibition. 
      TTI installation team placing twelve pork rind skateboards on the metal structure. "La Hermandad" (1994) was commissioned for the 1994 exhibition "Cocido y Crudo" at the Museo Reina Sofía, Madrid, and it's now part of the "la Caixa" Collection.  

       Vinyls go up – design by Mucho. More on the exhibition graphic design. 
      March 17, 11:30am: Presentation to the press. Left to right: Ferran Barenblit (MACBA director), exhibition curators Mariana Cánepa Luna and Max Andrews of Latitudes, and artist José Antonio Hernández-Díez. Photo: MACBA twitter.

      Visitors in front of "Sagrado Corazón Activo", a work from 1991 reconstructed for this exhibition. Photo: Miquel Coll/MACBA.
      Visitors next to "Houdini", a work from 1989 reconstructed for this exhibition. Photo: Miquel Coll/MACBA.

       General view of the exhibition. Photo: Roberto Ruiz/MACBA.

      April: We love snail mail and handwritten notes! We received a note from Rick & Megan Prelinger alongside a copy of their Yearbook 2015. We relished spending time at the Prelinger Library in San Francisco last August as part of our 'Incidents of Travel' series! (Our extended heartfelt thanks to the Kadist team for hosting us!).

      Card and Yearbook 2015 by the Prelinger Library.
       
      April 20: Wrapped-up a five-part interview with Melbourne-based artist Nicholas Mangan to be published in the catalogue of his forthcoming solo exhibition ‘Limits to Growth’, co-produced by Monash University Museum of Art (MUMA), Melbourne (opening July 20) and Institute of Modern Art (IMA), Brisbane (where it will be on view from October 29). The exhibition will travel to KW in Berlin in Summer 2017.


       Installing Pau Magrané exhibition at the Cub space in La Capella. Photos: Pau Magrané.

      April 27 (until June 12): Exhibition "Demo" of Pau Magrané/PLOM at Espai Cub, La Capella. This is the first of the three projects Latitudes is mentoring throughout 2016  as part of BCN Producció'16 production grant scheme. Video of the project here (Catalan with Spanish subtitles) or here (English).


      April 25–May 7: Two-week residency at CAPC Bordeaux to research for a group exhibition which will take place in 2017. One strand of our investigations departs from the CAPC building itself, known as Entrepôt Lainé – a 19th Century warehouse for colonial commodities. We learnt from the museum staff that coffee beans are occasionally found atop a pile of papers on an office desk or in the middle of the exhibition galleries. This became the focus of our May Cover Story (archived here).
      First and last pages of the first online dispatch by Chicago-based curator Yesomi Umolu within the distributed phase of Incidents (of Travel). http://incidents.kadist.org/
       

      May: Launch of the online project Incidents (of Travel), produced by Kadist Art Foundation. The web marks a new ‘distributed’ phase of ‘Incidents (of Travel)’ as an online periodical. The ongoing series will be edited by Latitudes and produced by Kadist.

      Originally conceived by Latitudes as day-long artist-led tours commissioned to artists in and around Mexico City (2012) – followed by Hong Kong (2013) and San Francisco (2015) – ‘Incidents’ expands on the format of the curator-meets-artist studio visit to explore the chartered itinerary as a format of an artistic encounter. The first dispatch came from Chicago and featured Yesomi Umolu (Exhibitions Curator at the Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts at the University of Chicago) and artist Harold Mendez, an offline day photographed by Nabiha Khan.

        
      June: Launch of the second Incidents (of Travel) dispatch, an encounter between curator Serubiri Moses and photographer Mohsen Taha in Jinja, Uganda, narrated throughout 18 photos by Taha with an introduction, captions, sound and commentary.
       

      And finally July. Some are off on holiday but many remain working full speed despite the less frantic inbox. Many surely agree that this is one of the weirdest months in the calendar, a bit like the pre-Christmas rush, but with a whole month of heated intensity

      4–8 July: Second trip to Bordeaux, more archival appointments and more geology. Led by Bruno Cahuzac (Maître de Conférences, UFR Sciences de la Terre et de la Mer) from the Faculté des Sciences de Bordeaux, we visited the incredible carothèque-lithothèque at the Université de Bordeaux in Talence which houses over 30,000 core samples from the subsoil of the Aquitaine basin.

      (Above) Gerard Ortín's exhibition "Vijfhoek" at Galería Estrany-de la Mota and (below) Gerard receiving the award.



      July 9 and 20: As jurors of this year's award Art Nou/Primera Visió we visited the twenty participating commercial galleries, non-profits, private foundations and museums alongside BCNProducció'16 co-tutors Mireia Sallarès and David Armengol. We unanimously decided to award Gerard Ortín for his solo show at Galería Estrany-de la Mota. Ortín receives 2,000 Euros to produce a new publication. The ceremony took place on July 21 at La Capella. Last year winner Rasmus Nilausen produced the publication "Soups & Symptoms" which includes a text by Max Andrews of Latitudes.


      Instagram post by Fireplace project.

      July 11: Presentation of the publications of the projects by artists Ricardo Trigo and Pau Magrané resulting from the production grant BCN Producció'16.  

       February 2016 Cover Story was dedicated to Sarah Ortmeyer. 

      Cover Stories on www.lttds.org: Over a year ago we began the monthly section "Cover Story" on our home page (archive of this section). October 2015 was dedicated to David Bestué's "Luces" installation commissioned for Composiciones, November 2015 marked the sixth anniversary of Globalising the Internationale, Christina Hemauer and Roman Keller’s project for Portscapes; December presented a shot taken during OMONOIA, the International Summit at the National Theatre of Greece’s New Rex which kicked off the Athens Biennale 2015–2017. 

      January shifted to black-and-white with a Mediterranean shot from E.1027, the 1920s Côte d'Azur house designed by Eileen Gray and Jean Badovici near Monaco meticulously documented since 2008 by Danish artist Kasper Akhøj. February stayed in France, going up to the Tour Eiffel and looking back at a piece by Sarah Ortmeyer presented in a 2011 exhibition in Brussels. March showed a behind-the-scenes moment of the production of "Sagrado Corazón Activo" (1991) a work by José Antonio Hernández-Díez that was only ever exhibited once before, in 1991 in Caracas. The piece was specially reconstructed for the exhibition "I Will Fear No Evil" at MACBA presenting a selection of his early works. In April we announced the forthcoming launch of 'Incidents (of Travel)', an online periodical produced by Kadist; and in May (back to France) we began our research at CAPC Bordeaux, where we'll be curating a group exhibition in June 2017. June took us back to Hernández-Díez's show which was coming to an end – some exhibition reviews here; and July took us back to the Latitudes-devised Composiciones commissions last October (the programme of artists’ interventions returns later this year).

      June Cover Story – all cover stories archived here.

       Antoni Hervàs preparing his installation for BCN Producció'16.

      We are presently preparing for what will be a rather intense September. Antoni Hervàs's exhibition "El Misterio de Caviria" at Sala Gran of La Capella (third round of exhibitions of the grant scheme BCN Producció) opens on September 15. It will be shortly followed by the presentation of the five "Composiciones" commissions by Lúa Coderch, Regina Giménez, Lola Lasurt, Robert Llimós and Wilfredo Prieto for the second Barcelona Gallery Weekend, inaugurating on Thursday 29 September, and on view until Sunday 2 October. 
       
      We have also been invited to contribute to Oslo Pilot, the two-year project investigating the role of art in the public realm led by Eva González-Sancho and Per Gunnar Eeg-Tverbakk. We will be writing on a selection of case-studies based around their four areas of research – Reactivation, Periodicity, Public and Disappearancewhich will be published in the magazine launched during a three-day symposium in mid-November 2016. 

      RELATED CONTENT:




      Second 'Incidents (of Travel)' dispatch by Moses Serubiri and Mohsen Taha reporting from Jinja, Uganda


      As part of Kadist Online Projects, Kadist and Latitudes are partnering in a new 'distributed' phase of 'Incidents (of Travel)' as an online periodical that is publishing regular contributions from curators and artists working around the world. 

      Originally conceived by Latitudes as day-long artist-led tours around Mexico City (2012) – followed by Hong Kong (2013) and San Francisco (2015) – 'Incidents (of Travel)' explores the chartered itinerary as a format of artistic encounter and an extended conversation between curator/s and artist/s. Online storytelling presents and documents curatorial fieldwork and an offline day conceived by an artist for a curator.



      The second 'Incidents (of Travel)' dispatch comes from Jinja, Uganda, where writer, researcher and curator Moses Serubiri met photographer Mohsen Taha. On this occasion Taha photographed the day together exploring Jinja's Indian architectural legacy and Idi Amin's notorious expulsion of Uganda's Asian minority in 1972. Taha's photographs show the architectural remnants of their presence, and Serubiri's commentary tells of the forces at work in Uganda during that period.

      Each of the 18 photographs in the sequence is augmented by one or more extra assets: a brief commentary, a caption or a soundscape, and is accessed by clicking the words which overlay the images.


      The series inaugurated with an itinerary from curator Yesomi Umolu and artist Harold Mendez from Chicago – their tour was photographed by Nabiha Khan

      Forthcoming contributions by Marianna Hovhannisyan (Yerevan / Istanbul), Yu Ji (Shanghai), Simon Soon (Kuala Lumpur / Sydney) and Natalia Zuluaga (Pereira / Miami), all fellows who participated in the seminar ‘The Place From Where We Look’ at Kadist Paris in June 2015. 


      RELATED CONTENT:




      Kadist and Latitudes present 'Incidents (Of Travel)' online


      Latitudes and Kadist Art Foundation are partnering in a new 'distributed' phase of 'Incidents (of Travel)' as an online periodical. As part of its Online Projects, Kadist will be publishing regular contributions from six of its fellows working around the world. 
       
      Originally conceived by Latitudes as day-long artist-led tours around Mexico City (2012) – followed by Hong Kong (2013) and San Francisco (2015) – 'Incidents (of Travel)' explores the chartered itinerary as a format of artistic encounter. Online storytelling present and document curatorial fieldwork and an offline day’s itinerary.
       
      Curator Yesomi Umolu and artist Harold Mendez inaugurate the series with a dispatch from Chicagofieldwork and online storytelling photographed by Nabiha Khan of an offline day’s itinerary. 

      Forthcoming contributions from Marianna Hovhannisyan (Yerevan / Istanbul), Yu Ji (Shanghai), Moses Serubiri (Kampala), Simon Soon (Kuala Lumpur / Sydney), and Natalia Zuluaga (Pereira / Miami), fellows who participated in the seminar ‘The Place From Where We Look’ at Kadist Paris in June 2015. 



      RELATED CONTENT:




      Instagram takeover of Kadist Art Foundation in San Francisco


      As part of Latitudes' residency at Kadist Art Foundation's instagram, we are taking over their instagram [@kadistfoundation] for the next 10 days. 

      You can follow the hashtags #‎artistnotatthestudiocuratornotattheoffice‬ ‪#‎LatitudesBarcelona‬ ‪#‎IncidentsOfTravel‬ 

      Today we've posted pictures of the first Incidents Of Travel artist-led day tour, a day spent with Megan and Rick Prelinger, founders of the Prelinger Library, "An appropriation-friendly collection of books, periodicals and print ephemera, open to the public in downtown San Francisco". The library "is a free-offering, an installation, a workshop, an extension of our living-room" and holds some 30,000 bound objects, 60,000 loose sheets and 10,000 zines following a unique home-made "geospatial arrangement scheme". Megan and Rick have described the project as never static and compared it to "a long-cooking pot of stew, [that] continuously takes in new ingredients while also reducing down, becoming richer and more concentrated with time".

      Posts will be progressively archived in this storify.

      Forthcoming events: 

      29 August: Closed-door seminar 'Near-Future Artworlds Curatorial Disruption Foresight Group' #NFACDFG;

      1 September: Launch of Latitudes' contribution to the One Sentence Exhibition online initiative;

      3 September: #‎IncidentsOfTravel‬ with Amy Balkin;

      4 September: #‎IncidentsOfTravel‬ with Will Brown.

      This is the blog of the independent curatorial office Latitudes. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.
      All photos:
      Latitudes | www.lttds.org (except when noted otherwise in the photo caption)
      Work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.




      Residency at the Kadist Art Foundation, San Francisco, 26 August–9 September 2015

       Kadist Art Foundation, San Francisco, 2014 (exterior view). Photo: Arash Fayez, Courtesy Kadist Art Foundation.

      Between 26 August–9 September 2015 Latitudes will be in residency at Kadist Art Foundation in San Francisco. During this time, and following its two previous iterations in Mexico City (Casa del Lago, 2012) and Hong Kong (Spring Workshop, 2013), Latitudes will do a new iteration of 'Incidents of Travel'exploring San Francisco. Three specially-commissioned tours by artists Amy Balkin, the artist collective Will Brown (a collaborative project of David Kasprzak, Jordan Stein, and Lindsey White) and outsider librarians Megan and Rick Prelinger as expanded studio visits will focus on the Bay Area and link to Latitudes's current research around the carbon cycle

      You can follow the tours via Kadist's Instagram as part of the 'Artist not at the Studio, Curator not at the Office' Latitudes' takeover, and as a series of posts that will be published on this channel.
       

      In the afternoon of August 29, Latitudes will co-host a 'Near-Future Artworlds Curatorial Disruption Foresight Group', a workshop which extends the seminar recently developed in May for the International Curatorial Retreat in Bari, Italy. 

      The 'Near-Future Artworlds Curatorial Disruption Foresight Group' is a forum for informal dialogue about megatrends and the future of contemporary art institutions

      In the same way that the Internet has untethered television from fixed schedules and newspapers from print deadlines, the first meeting broadly addressed to what degree the organizational forms of art institutions are embracing or resisting similar transformations through various curatorial/editorial prototypes and prognosticative use-case scenarios.

      Convened by the Barcelona-based curatorial office Latitudes together with
      Kadist Art Foundation, this second meeting will bring together individuals and expertise in the Bay Area with an active interest in institutional prototyping and emergent usership. With an emphasis on cross-pollination between design thinking and curatorial thinking, the meeting will discuss, among other things, the notion of the post-disciplinary, and the question of appropriate speeds or periodicities of institutions.

      In order to be conducive to freedom of interaction, the meeting is held under the Chatham House Rule. This allows participants to express personal views, to listen, reflect and gather insights with a clear distinction from the position of their employers and/or the policies of any associated organization. Participation is expected, but there will be no resolutions issued, no votes undertaken, and no policy statements proposed.






      Locating Ancient Lights signs around London with Nicholas Mangan

      Nicholas Mangan’s show “Ancient Lights” recently opened at London’s Chisenhale Gallery, where Latitudes had a conversation with the artist on 7 July. The title of the show refers to a long-established English planning law enshrining the “right to light” by restricting the construction of buildings that would block sunlight reaching the windows of neighboring properties. If the sun has shined through a window for more than twenty years, there is legal protection for it not to be blocked. 

      In the spirit of our tour project Incidents of Travel (which has involved artist-led explorations of Mexico City, Hong Kong, and soon San Francisco) on 3 July we set out with Nick to track down some of these esoteric signs in central London.


      We started with a set of signs that – thanks to Wikipedia’s entry on the Right to light – are probably the best-known examples. The back windows of houses on Albemarle Way are visible from the Memorial Garden of the Priory Church of the Order of Saint John just off the Clerkenwell Road. (Here is a map of some Ancient Lights signs in London, if you know of more let us know!). We made our way on foot to a spot at the south end of Hatton Gardens (an address now notorious for the April 2015 heist) but failed to find the rumored sign there. It was a little early in the day for a pint at the nearby Ye Olde Mitre.



      Heading in to Chinatown, we found ourselves scouring the bizarrely-named Horse & Dolphin Yard, a dead-end alleyway with a pagoda-like construction where several restaurants from Gerrard Street and Shaftesbury Avenue have there back entrances. We eventually spotted the sign, which appears to have been moved from its original location as it doesn’t mark any window, just a bare brick wall.



      Nearby there is a cute sign above the diminutive Rupert Court, at the back of The Blue Posts pub. (If we were going to stop for a drink it would have to be somewhere far more thematically appropriate – the Sun Tavern in Covent Garden, The Sun and 13 Cantons in Soho or the Rising Sun in Bloomsbury, would hit the spot). 

      Later in the week we found the huge and typographically-distinguished Ancient Lights sign in Newman Passage, a little connecting street perhaps most famous for its starring role in the murderous opening scene of the film Peeping Tom (1960).


      The more modest sign that can be seen next to the lamp of The Hope pub, just near Goodge Street tube station, is a palimpsest still bearing visible traces of an earlier sign underneath. Thus endeth the tour!


      RELATED CONTENT:

      Latitudes conversation with Nicholas Mangan on 7 July 2015 at Chisenhale Gallery, London;


      Cover Story, July 2015: Nicholas Mangan’s ‘Ancient Lights’;

      Max Andrews, Feature on Nicholas Mangan, 'Landscape Artist', Frieze, Issue 172, Summer 2015;

      Mariana Cánepa Luna, 'What Lies Underneath', interview with Nicholas Mangan, Mousse Magazine #47, February–March 2015.


      This is the blog of the independent curatorial office Latitudes. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.
      All photos: Latitudes | www.lttds.org (except when noted otherwise in the photo caption)
      This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.




      Archive of Cover Story (April): "Beneath the Connaught Road West flyover, Hong Kong, 19 January 2013"

      This past March we launched our re-designed website, which includes improved features as well as new sections such as "cover story" on our home page: a monthly focus on an artwork, artist, book, site or trip we've experienced in our recent past, accompanied by a short text.  

      Our April Cover Story titled "Beneath the Connaught Road West flyover, Hong Kong, 19 January 2013" looked back at the first 'Incidents of Travel' tour led by artist Nadim Abbas, part of our month residency at Spring Workshop. 

      We recommend reading the text while listening to this field recording we made on the very same spot!


      Related content:

      Cover Story #1: Wilfredo Prieto's work "Grease, Soap, Banana" (2 April 2015)
      New re-designed website now online! (25 February 2015) 
      Witte de With and Spring Workshop's 'Moderation(s)' publication 'End Note(s)' is out! (5 March 2015).
      Nadim Abbas' "Incidents of Travel: Hong Kong" public tour (19 January 2013)
      Archive of social media posts related to "Incidents of Travel" tours and photo-documentation.
      Interview between Christina Li and Latitudes on 'Incidents of Travel' for Witte de With's 'Witness to Moderation(s)' blog (7 May 2013)

      13 field recordings from 'Incidents of Travel: Hong Kong'


      This is the blog of the independent curatorial office Latitudes. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.
      All photos:
      Latitudes | www.lttds.org (except when noted otherwise in the photo caption).
      Work is licensed under a
      Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.




      Witte de With and Spring Workshop's 'Moderation(s)' publication 'End Note(s)' is out!

      Cover and backcover of 'End Note(s)'.


      'End Note(s)' is finally out! The publication marks the conclusion of two years of residencies, discussions, editorial and exhibition projects within the framework of 'Moderation(s)', a multiform collaboration between Hong Kong's Spring Workshop and Rotterdam's Witte de With, steered by Singaporean artist and curator Heman Chong

      Latitudes participation took place in January 2013 with a month-long residency at Spring Workshop, Hong Kong, and with the production of "Incidents of Travel": an invitation extended to four Hong Kong-based artists – Nadim Abbas, Ho Sin Tung, Yuk King Tan and Samson Young – to develop day-long tours, thus retelling the city and each participant’s artistic concerns through personal itineraries and waypoints. 

      As announced a few months ago, Latitudes has contributed to the publication with a visual essay documenting each of the artists' itineraries accompanying them with a revised and reedited version of the May 2013 conversation with curator Christina Li (Moderation(s)' witness). 

       
       Section of the book (pp. 61–89) dedicated to Latitudes' "Incidents of Travel". Here the names of the artists and the locations visited during each of their tours.

      Itinerary and photo-documentation of Nadim Abbas' tour on 19 January 2013.


      (Above and below) Itinerary and photo-documentation of Yuk King Tan's tour on 24 January 2013.

       Itinerary and photo-documentation of Ho Sin Tung's tour on 29 January 2013.


      (Above and below) Itinerary and photo-documentation of Samson Young's tour, 7 February 2013.

      Reedited version of a conversation with curator Christina Li – Moderation(s)' witness – originally published on Witte de With's blog dedicated to the project. 

      Here's an excerpt of our conversation with Christina:

      Christina Li: The artists' tours were meant for you both to converse privately with each selected artist while getting to know their practices and the city. Did the public aspect of the Nadim Abbas' tour and your experience of the commercial tours suggest a different perspective of how the format could function from your initial perception? How has this attempt challenged your thinking in mediating and presenting the immediate experience and documentation of these tours to a larger audience?

      Latitudes: Although the commercial tours were taking place regularly by prior arrangement, we happened to be the only participants on each of the days [Feng Shui tour and Tour of the Devil's Peak]. We tried to keep the artist tours casual and inconspicuous, and to respect the notion of hospitality and privacy in the same way that if we came to your house for dinner, you would not expect us to bring a group of strangers with us. In fact, the day with Yuk King Tan concluded with a household of Filipina domestic workers making food for us – women whose trust and friendship she had earned through her personal affiliations and the concerns of her art. In this case it would obviously have been completely inappropriate and something of a human safari to bring along an audience. 



      Visiting Waterfall Bay with Nadim Abbas was part of the public tour on 19 January 2013. Photo: Trevor Yeung.

      But we had no desire to make the days exclusive or private as if they were some kind of bespoke tourist service. Other people sometimes joined for parts of the days if the artist had suggested it, yet the main point of emphasis was our commitment to the tour in lieu of the typically brief studio visit and a situation in which the artist has had ownership of planning the whole day. If there would be definitely something like an audience present throughout (that might expect to be engaged or come and go) the dynamics and the logistics would have changed.

      The artist tours were conceived from the point of view of research, and we have been reluctant to burden the artists or overload the format to the degree that they become durational artworks or somehow theatrical. We are not particularly focused on tidying up whatever their ontological status as art might be and likewise we have deliberately not just invited artists whose work has a clear sympathy with performative, urban research or an obvious relation with sociability or place.  We feel it is important that the format is quite malleable to the personality of each artist and that in the same way that you might browse a newspaper or share a car journey with somebody, the tours do not require a wider audience to legitimize them. In the same sense they have not necessarily required documentation to make them valid. However, we have been increasingly interested in the idea of reportage or live broadcast in terms of the ‘making of’ or ‘artist at work’ genre, while at the same time being really wary about our own positions as protagonists and photographs that might seem like they belong in a travel magazine.

      The tours in Mexico City took place during five consecutive days right after our arrival, so the way we shared the photographic material was more direct via our Facebook page at the end of each day. The exhibition at Casa del Lago opened only two days after we concluded the last tour, so we had to come up with a straightforward display form. For each tour the photographer Eunice Adorno had accompanied us and in the end we projected a selection of 200 of her images as a slideshow, and displayed a few of them printed on the wall alongside a large map of the city with pins locating the sites we visited. We also had printed itineraries, written by the artists, so anyone could later follow the routes themselves if they so desired. 



      Visiting the Espacio Escultórico at U.N.A.M. with Jerónimo Hagerman, one of the five tours around Mexico City in September 2012. Photo: Eunice Adorno.

      In Hong Kong we were using Twitter, Instagram, and Vine during the tours, so it was an experiment in documentation-on-the-fly and live journaling which was open to real-time responses. We also made a series of one-minute field recordings. The tweets were archived soon after alongside these recordings, as well as related Facebook posts. We also published blog posts about each of the tours which included many photographs (by us and others) alongside paragraphs from the artists’ itineraries. This might seem to highlight merely mundane technical aspects of the project but it also heightened our interest in further exploring the idea of the curatorial bandwidth beyond exhibition making, something we continued to investigate in following projects such as #OpenCurating.


      'End Note(s)' Colophon:

      Concept: Heman Chong
      Editors: Defne Ayas, Mimi Brown, Heman Chong, Amira Gad, Samuel Saelemakers
      Contributors: A Constructed World, Nadim Abbas, Defne Ayas, Oscar van den Boogaard, Mimi Brown, Heman Chong, Chris Fitzpatrick, Amira Gad, Travis Jeppesen, Latitudes, Christina Li, Guy Mannes-Abbott, Samuel Saelemakers, Aaron Schuster
      Copy Editors: Janine Armin, Marnie Slater
      Production: Amira Gad, Samuel Saelemakers, Heman Chong
      Design: Kristin Metho
      Printer: Koninglijke Van Gorcum
      Publisher: Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art Rotterdam, the Netherlands

      ISBN: 978-94-9143-529-4

       
      RELATED CONTENT:
        
      First week of the "Moderation(s)" residency at Spring Workshop, Hong Kong (17January 2013) 

      Nadim Abbas' "Incidents of Travel: Hong Kong" public tour (19 January 2013) 

      "Temple and Feng Shui Tour", a guided walk around Hong Kong Island & Kowloon (22 January 2013)

      Ho Sin Tung "Incidents of Travel: Hong Kong" tour (30 January 2013)

      Yuk King Tan's "Incidents of Travel: Hong Kong" tour (3 February 2013)


      Tour of Devil's Peak and the Museum of Coastal Defence (6 February 2013)

      Samson Young's "Incidents of Travel: Hong Kong" tour (7 February 2013)


      Latitudes' Open Day at Spring Workshop on 2 February 2013 (9 February 2013)

      "Archive as Method: An Interview with Chantal Wong, Hammad Nasar and Lydia Ngai" of the Asia Art Archive, Hong Kong. Concluding #OpenCurating interview (1 May 2013)


      "Digression(s), Entry Point(s): An interview with Heman Chong", Singapore-based artist, curator and writer. Eighth in the #OpenCurating research series. (4 April 2013)

      Archive of social media posts related to "Incidents of Travel" tours and photo-documentation.


      13 field recordings from 'Incidents of Travel: Hong Kong' 

      Witte de With opens the group show "The Part In The Story Where A Part Becomes A Part Of Something Else" on May 22, 2014 (21 April 2014)

      Interview between Christina Li and Latitudes on 'Incidents of Travel' for Witte de With's 'Witness to Moderation(s)' blog (7 May 2013)
       
       
      This is the blog of the independent curatorial office Latitudes. Follow us on Facebook and @LTTDS.
      All photos:
      Latitudes | www.lttds.org (except when noted otherwise in the photo caption).
      Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.




      Seven storify threads available on https://storify.com/lttds

      Report from Frieze week: Frieze Art Fair, Frieze Masters and the whole other rest, 12–18 October 2014 
      https://storify.com/lttds/report-from-frieze-week-frieze-art-fair-frieze-mas

      Report from Madrid: exhibitions during Apertura 2014 (11–13 September 2014)
      https://storify.com/lttds/report-from-madrid-museums-and-galleries-during-ap

      Visiting Curator Program, Gertrude Contemporary, Melbourne, 12 May–7 June 2014
      https://storify.com/lttds/visiting-curator-program-gertrude-contemporary-mel

      More on this residency here.

      'Incidents of Travel', Hong Kong, 7 January–10 February 2013
      https://storify.com/lttds/incidents-of-travel-hong-kong

      More on this project and residency here.

      'The Margins of the Factory', a show by Iratxe Jaio and Klaas van Gorkum at ADN Platform, 25 January–30 April 2014
      https://storify.com/lttds/the-margins-of-the-factory-an-exhibition-by-iratx

      More on this exhibition here.

      Report from Paris: FIAC 2013, 21–25 October 2013
      https://storify.com/lttds/paris-during-fiac-2013

      #OpenCurating research, June 2012–April 2013
      https://storify.com/lttds/opencurating 

      More on this research project here.


      Related content:

      "When Does an Exhibition Begin and End?" symposium, National Library of Singapore, 14 May 2014

      Lunchtime Art Forum and seminar with PhD candidates in Curatorial Practice, MADA | Monash Art Design & Architecture, Melbourne, 14 May 2014 

      'The Margins of the Factory' on Artforum's Critics' Picks

      "Focus Interview: Iratxe Jaio & Klaas van Gorkum", frieze, Issue 157, September 2013



      This is the blog of the independent curatorial office Latitudes. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.
      All photos:
      Latitudes | www.lttds.org (except when noted otherwise in the photo caption)
      This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.




      Witte de With opens the group show "The Part In The Story Where A Part Becomes A Part Of Something Else" on May 22, 2014

      Anthony Marcellini, "The Object In And Of Itself", 2011. Courtesy the artist and Witte de With, Rotterdam.

      The group exhibition "The Part In The Story Where A Part Becomes A Part Of Something Else", opening on 22 May at Rotterdam's Witte de With brings a conclusion to "Moderation(s)", the long-term multifarious programme that began in August 2012 with a teaser event at Spring Workshop, Hong Kong, co-partner of the initiative. 

      The exhibition, curated by 'moderator' Heman Chong (artist and writer, Singapore) and Samuel Saelemakers (Associate Curator, Witte de With), will include works by +40 artists "gathered around key concepts such as time, duration and space (Douglas Gordon, Felix Gonzalez-Torres, On Kawara), memory and inscription (Ang Song Ming, John Cage, Sharon Hayes), transformation (Bik Van der Pol, Nicolás Lamas), pleasure (Ivan Argote, Chu Yun, Willem de Rooij, Haegue Yang), and encounters (Lee Kit, Narcisse Tordoir)." [from the website].
       
      "Moderation(s)" began in January 2013 with Latitudes' month-long residency at Spring Workshop, Hong Kong, with its project "Incidents of Travel": an invitation to four Hong Kong-based artists – Nadim Abbas, Ho Sin Tung, Yuk King Tan and Samson Young – to develop day-long tours, thus retelling the city and each participant’s artistic concerns through personal itineraries and waypoints. 

      Around Kwun Tong market and shops with Samson Young. Photo: Spring Workshop. More photo-documentation here.

      On 31 January a group of "Moderation(s)" participants [Heman Chong, Latitudes (Mariana Cánepa Luna and Max Andrews), Nadim Abbas, Mimi Brown, Chantal Wong, and Yuk King Tan] spent eight hours consulting the Asia Art Archive and engaging in multiple discussions around collectivity, time and knowledge triggered by archival resources [see "Asia Art Archive Intervention"]

      Latitudes will also contribute to the forthcoming publication to be released on the occasion of the "The Part In The Story...", with documentation from each of the "Incidents of Travel" tours and an interview with curator Christina Li, Moderation(s)' witness.  

      Participants during the Asia Art Archive intervention on 31 January 2013. Photo: Spring Workshop.

      Follow:  
      #ThePartInTheStory

      Related posts:
      – 

      This is the blog of the independent curatorial office Latitudes. You can also follow us on Facebook and Twitter.
      All photos:
      Latitudes | www.lttds.org (except when noted otherwise in the photo caption)
      This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.




      Interview between Christina Li and Latitudes on 'Incidents of Travel' for Witte de With's 'Witness to Moderation(s)' blog

      From April, 2013 onwards, writer and curator Christina Li (HK/NL) takes up the role of a designated Witness to Moderation(s) the year-long programme of exhibitions, performances and residencies that unfolds between Witte de With in Rotterdam and Spring in Hong Kong. As such, Li is invited to post regular blog entries responding to the multi-faceted projects part of Moderation(s).

      Christina Li has been a part of Moderation(s) since its inception, and participated in the research and development workshop that took place at Witte de With in October 2012. Li will also be one of the four curators –together with Lee Ambrozy, Amira Gad, and Xiaoyu Weng– organizing the day-long conference Stories And Situations: The Moderation(s) Conference to take place on 5 October 2013 at Witte de With.

      The interview published below between Li and Latitudes was originally published on Witte de With's website on May 2, 2013. 
       
      Christina Li: Incidents of Travel” in Hong Kong is a second iteration of a project that you started in Mexico D.F in 2012, could you talk a little bit about how the idea of inviting artists to plan an itinerary functioning as both an artistic encounter and alternative studio visit came about?

      Latitudes: The idea of the tour guide is of course not new. Back in 2009 while we were doing a year-long project in the Port of Rotterdam, we organised a series of bus tours to the port where we would present projects by Jan Dibbets, Lara Almarcegui or Christina Hemauer and Roman Keller, etc. Listening to the feedback of the group that took part during those tours, we realised there was something very valuable about the idea of being (kindly) trapped in a bus for a day and to be taken around with a group of people whom you shared interests or even friendship with. Some were co-workers and took the day to talk about non-work related issues, to admire the landscape, to listen to the soundtrack that accompanied the bus tour and basically to enjoy a day away from the keyboard. We wanted to repeat what we thought was a successful format and thought our trip to Mexico DF was a perfect occasion for that.


       Tour with Lara Almarcegui and botanist Remko Andeweg around the Port of Rotterdam, 8 November 2009. Photo: Latitudes. More images of the tour here.

      While preparing a small exhibition of our eight years of practice for Casa del Lago in México DF, we felt we needed to add a ‘here and now’ contribution, and suggested inviting five artists (Minerva Cuevas, Tania Pérez Córdova, Diego Berruecos, Terence Gower and Jerónimo Hagerman) to develop a day-long tour for us.The choice of artists was mixed, some we had met before (Jerónimo or Terence) but didn’t know their work in much detail, and others (Tania, Minerva and Diego) we had been following their work for a while, but never met them in person. Our invitation was very open, our idea was for them to develop an itinerary that helped us understand their creative world, and that included them taking us to their favourite (or hated!) museums, libraries, markets, monuments, housing states, shops, restaurants, etc. that were special to their lives or to their artistic practice. We offered all artists a fee, covered all food and tickets-related expenses and had a car to take us around 9am–6pm, after that we used public transport. Experiencing any city accompanied by a local friend always offers a much deeper insight into any city, but navigating it with an artist whose work you admire, is even more meaningful as each site amplifies a personal connection.



       Photo: Eduardo Loza

      Li: Did you choose to adopt a different approach in your invitation to the artists in the Hong Kong edition? As far as I understood, Nadim Abbas’ tour was open to the public, while Yuk King Tan’s, Ho Sin Tung’s and Samson Young’s were conducted in a more intimate manner within a smaller group; what was the reason behind this decision? What were the responses to Nadim Abbas’ tour?

      Latitudes: No, the invitation was the same in both occasions, though in Hong Kong we mostly used public transport. We also had more time to prepare and digest information, as were a month in residence at Spring. In the end it worked out as one tour per week as that suited best the artists’ schedule. Nadim’s tour was the first and was indeed open to the public, it has been the only tour so far with this aspect, although it was still a small group, initially of around fifteen people. We were interested in pushing the format and of course this meant that Nadim had to consider practical issues like distances and locations more carefully (ie. avoiding long walking distances, accessibility for groups, food availability…) in order to be realistic with the timings. A few people joined on and off, some engaged more actively than others. It was wonderful to see that Hong Kongers were also discovering sites they had never been to, like the Waterfall Bay Park or the nearby Waterfall Bay. Somehow we were all tourists for a day.


      Nadim Abbas tour, 19 January 2013. Waterfall Bay Park's waterfall. Photo: Trevor Young
       
      Li: Since these tours have always been meant for you both to converse privately with each selected artist and to get to know their practices and the city, has opening these tours up conjure a different perspective of how these tours could function for you both initially? How has this attempt challenge your thinking in mediating and presenting the immediate experience and documentation of these tours to a larger audience?

      Latitudes: The tours were conceived from the point of view of research, and we haven’t wanted to necessarily burden the artists or the format with the expectations that they were participatory performances or some kind of touristic spectacle. We’ve tried to keep them quite casual and inconspicuous in this sense, and to respect the notion of hospitality in the same way that if we came to your house for dinner, you wouldn’t expect us to bring a group of strangers with us! Indeed this was literally the case in the day with Yuk King Tan, which concluded with a household of Filipina domestic workers making dinner for us – women whose trust and friendship she had earned through her personal affiliations and the concerns of her art. It is really not a question of us making the tours exclusive or private – we have not actually prohibited anyone else from coming along if the artist suggested it or was anyway okay with it. Yet it somehow seemed important to be able to commit to spending an entire day with them, and as soon as there is definitely something like an audience present (that might expect to be entertained or decide to leave) the dynamics and the logistics change.

      The tours in México DF took place during five consecutive days right after our arrival, so the way we shared the photographic material was more direct via our Facebook at the end of each day. The exhibition at Casa del Lago opened only two days after we concluded the last tour, so had to come up with a fast solution to present our explorations: we projected a selection of 200 images as a slideshow, and displayed a selection of printed photos on the wall alongside a large map of the city with pins that located the sites we visited and the actual itineraries we followed written by the artists, which contained short descriptions of each site (we printed extra copies of these and made them available in the exhibition so one could pick them up and follow the route. These are now available to download from our website.)


       Photo: Adrián Villalobos

      In Hong Kong we were able to tweet during the tours, so it was an interesting process of documentation-on-the-go, of keeping a live diary of one’s journey, and to receive real-time responses from colleagues all over the world – the tweets have now been archived alongside some thirteen sound recordings, Facebook and blog posts. We also published blog posts of each of the tours which include extensive photo-documentation (by us and colleagues who took part) of the day interconnecting each photo with paragraphs of the itineraries written by the artists and our own impressions.

      Li: You also have been to some other more specialised tours on offer during your stay in Hong Kong, were there more specific aspects of Hong Kong you were hoping to explore which guided your choices in attending these tours as a sightseer and a cultural tourist?

      Latitudes: We were interested in studying what kind of readings the city offered away from the usual tourist sites (the Tian Tan Buddha, Victoria Peak, shopping tours, a day in Macau,…). We wanted to see if we could find more ‘marginal’ sculptures or sites that presented vernacular displays far from the polished and pre-packaged tourist experience.


        1km of floating boardwalks, Deep Bay, Mai Po Marshes. Photo: Latitudes.

      We picked up hundreds of leaflets in the information office and found a couple interesting ones offered by the Walk Hong Kong company we thought were somehow out of the usual menu. We have always been interested in environmental issues and wanted to approach the high density of Hong Kong from another angle, from its relation to the surrounding nature. We visited the Mai Po Nature Reserve in the New Territories, a wetland on the Australasia migratory route, and ended the day in Long Valley in Sheung Shui, observing birds and farmers collecting large amounts of lettuces and watercress. This also tied in with another wetland we visited later with Ho Sin Tung, the Nam Sang Wai area, in the northwest of Hong Kong. This is to say that our own interests ended up tying in nicely with the sites we visited with the artists. Samson Young took us to a nearby area on his tour, to the border fence that separates Hong Kong with mainland China were we listened to “Liquid Borders”, a soundtrack he has been recording placing contact microphones in the wired fencing and mixing it with the sound of water of the Shenzhen River.

      Another tour we joined was the Feng Shui tour led by Susan Braun. We started visiting Norman Foster’s Hong Kong HSBC building in Admiralty, built according to strict Feng Shui principles, and finished at the Chi Lin Nunnery. The final one was with Martin Heyes, a former British Army officer and passionate World War II specialist, who took us to Devil’s Peak at the eastern extremity of Kowloon and to the Museum of Coastal Defence, to learn everything about the 1941 Japanese invasion of Hong Kong.

      A group of Japanese tourists visit the fough battery on Devil's Peak. Photo: Latitudes
       
      Li: As a whole, what would you say about the kinds of insights you have gained about the city from these tours, which might be seen as complements to the knowledge produced from the more casual encounters you have had through “Incidents of Travel”?

      Latitudes: The Walk Hong Kong tours were an opportunity for us to specifically learn about birds, marshlands, Feng Shui and the 1941 Japanese invasion, but most importantly it was an opportunity to discuss with our tour leaders issues that went beyond the tour script so to speak, issues like immigration, recent historical events such as the 2003 SARS outbreak, the current economic climate, the relationship to mainland China, etc. Curiously, all of the tour leaders were expats that had lived in Hong Kong for many years, so for us it was very interesting to hear how it was to live there today. The same goes for the artists, we absorbed a great wealth of information from each other beyond discussing the sites we were taken to. We talked about books, films, about the art world, what it is to be an artist and a curator today, etc. ‘Incidents of Travel’ and our residency was very much in line with what Heman Chong, moderator of the Moderation(s) program, explained during the January press conference: Moderation(s) is about stretching time. Not surprisingly, the image he chose to illustrate the long term collaboration between Spring Workshop and Witte de With was a clock. That image stood out very clearly during our time there. The offered time gave us the chance to generate conversations with the artists, to find a common ground, to generously share and exchange some kind of knowledge, and to engage in multiple and repeated dialogues with locals and expats, a rare luxury one is not often given.

       Latitudes' talk on 'Incidents of Travel: Hong Kong' and their practice during 'Open Day' at Spring Workshop, 2 February 2013.

        
      Related contents:
      13 Soundscapes of "Incidents of Travel: Hong Kong";
      Storify "Incidents of Travel";
      Flickr album of the four tours of "Incidents of Travel".


      All photos: Latitudes | www.lttds.org (except when noted otherwise in the photo caption)
       




      Report from Dublin and Derry-Londonderry: research trip to Ireland, 8–14 March 2013

      View of Dublin's 1816 Ha'penny Bridge nearby Temple Bar.

      Invited by Dublin City Council: The Arts Office, Latitudes visited art spaces, artists' studios and galleries in Dublin and Derry-Londonderry throughout the week.

      The schedule included visits to the Red Stables Studios; Temple Bar Gallery + Studios; Fire Station Artists' Studios; Green On Red Gallery; Kevin Kavanagh Gallery and Project Arts Centre - Visual Arts, as well as talks by
      Latitudes to students of the MA in Visual Arts Practices (MAVIS) (8 March, 3pm), and at the recently inaugurated CCA Derry~Londonderry (9 March, 7pm) as well as participation in the seminar "Within the Public Realm" at the Dublin City Gallery The Hugh Lane (12 March, 2–5pm), alongside curator Aisling Prior and the artist Sean Lynch.





       Latitudes was invited to Dublin in the context of the Barcelona Mayor's visit to Dublin and the renewing of the twinning agreement between the two cities. Here a coffee table at the Lord Mayor's Mansion House displays "Atlas of the Irish Rural Landscape" and "Barcelona" books.


       Talking to MA in Visual Arts Practice (MAVIS) students at The Lab on 8 March. Photo: @lemuela


      9 March: After +4h bus ride north, we arrive at Centre for Contemporary Art in Derry–Londonderry for a talk that evening at 7pm.

      View of CCA's galleries hosting the touring exhibition The Grand Domestic Revolution GOES ON (GDR), which in Derry-Londonderry "focuses on the contemporary working conditions of caregivers—primarily mothers and grandmothers—in the domestic sphere."


       In the galleries, two of the London-based design collective Åbäke (Patrick Lacey, Benjamin Reichen, Kajsa Ståhl and Maki Suzuki), building a bed inspired by a 1970s design by Enzo Mari.
       

      Collection of books on domestic spaces, DYI, cooking, gardening, self-build architecture, urban planning, etc. accompany the The Grand Domestic Revolution GOES ON (GDR) exhibition.


      Aileen Burns and Johan Lundh, co-directors of CCA Derry–Londonderry, hosted a wonderful Thai pre-talk dinner.


      Sunday walk around the Bloody Sunday Memorial and the Bogside area of Derry-Londonderry.


      Two of the murals around Bogside.


      Ernesto Che Guevara Lynch mural in Derry-Londonderry's Bogside.


      With Aileen and Johan at Kinnagoe Bay in Donegal, site of 1588 shipwreck of one of the Spanish Armada ships.


      11 March: Back to our temporary home in Dublin's The Red Stables in St. Anne's Park.


      A windswept North Bull Island looking towards the city.

        Visitor Centre at North Bull Island.


      12 March: Studio visits at Temple Bar Studios + Gallery in the heart of the city.


      Temple Bar Studios + Gallery, a former shirt-factory building, celebrates its 30th anniversary this year.

       
      Studio of artist Alan Butler, one of the 30 on site.

       
      Setting up for the 2–5pm talk at The Hugh Lane Dublin City Gallery organised by MAVIS, The Hugh Lane and Dublin City Council.


      After the seminar, artists Sean Lynch and Michele Horrigan took us to see the 'failed' Richard Serra nearby the Guiness factory.


      13 March: Visiting the sculpture workshop facilities of Fire Station Artists' Studios with Development Manager Liz Burns and Director Clodagh Kenny.

      Studio of Martin Healy in Fire Station Artists' Studios and his work around perpetual motion. 


      Artist Maria Mc Kinney research on wheat weaving and straw craft techniques for her project 'Garlands'.


      Karl Burke "wooden drawings" photos and renderings.


      Crossing the Sean O'Casey bridge to begin a gallery tour including Green on Red Gallery, Kevin Kavanagh Gallery, The Douglas Hyde Gallery, Project Arts Space and Temple Bar Studios + Gallery, with Dublin-based critic, curator and Senior Lecturer at the School of Irish, Celtic, Folklore & Linguistics, Caioimhin MacGiolla Leith.


      Group show "Material Fact" at Green On Red Gallery included works by Silvia Bächli, Paul Doran, Dennis McNulty and Gerard Byrne (photographed), one of the more well-known Irish artists.


      'Detached' group show at Project Arts Centre, guest curated by The Artists' Institute director and founder Anthony Huberman, recently appointed Director of CCA Wattis in San Francisco.


      Alice Channer's "Amphibians" (left) and Sunah Choi's "Abdrucke (Imprints)", 2011-13 (wall)

       

      Temple Bar Studios + Gallery, hosted 'Or tears, Of Course' a solo show of British artist Ed Atkins (photos above and below).

       

      Gathering plenty of material during studio visits, lunches, dinners and meetings.


      14 March: Morning visit to the wondrous Natural History, a 1857 building displaying "animals from Ireland and overseas, also geological exhibits from a total collection of about 2 million scientific specimens".


       Ground floor gallery dedicated to dedicated to "Irish animals, featuring giant deer skeletons and a variety of mammals, birds and fish".




      The minimal education department are doing a great job at dynamising the nicknamed "Dead Zoo" or "Museum of Museums": The 5 year old giraffe has her own twitter account @SpotticusNH and they will soon host a "night at the museum" event where a few kids will be able to sleep (or try to) in the museum galleries.


       The stunning upper gallery was "laid out in the 19th Century in a scientific arrangement showing animals by taxonomic group. This scheme demonstrated the diversity of animal life in an evolutionary sequence." Unfortunately the second and third floor balconies have been closed due to a safety review as they do not comply with current safety regulations, which impedes visitors from seeing, amongst many other things, the museum's unique collection of glass models manufactured in Dresden in the late 19th Century by the father-and-son team of Leopold and Rudolf Blaschka




      All photos: Latitudes | www.lttds.org (except when noted otherwise in the photo caption)




      Latitudes' Open Day at Spring Workshop on 2 February 2013

      On February 2nd, 2013 Spring Workshop hosted an Open Day during which Latitudes discussed, together with Moderation(s) moderator Heman Chong, their month-long residency in Hong Kong. The contribution to the project consisted in realising the second iteration of "Incidents of Travel",  with tours by Hong Kong-based artists Nadim Abbas (19 January), Yuk King Tan (24 January), Ho Sin Tung (29 January) and Samson Young (7 February) – amongst other explorations around the city, such as to Mai Po marshes, Feng Shui tour or to Devil's Peak

      The evening began tracing "Incidents of Travel"'s origins with itineraries and tours organised in previous projects such as the seminar-on-wheels for the 8th Sharjah Biennial (2007) as well as during Portscapes (2009) in the Port of Rotterdam. After introducing "Incidents of Travel" in Mexico City and the four tours in Hong Kong, we fielded questions from the audience and discussed the ongoing research project #OpenCurating and its origins with the editorial project realised for the The Last Newspaper (2010) exhibition at the New Museum in New York.


       Moderation(s)' moderator: artist, writer and curator Heman Chong.


       Q+A begins.
       Food time! Thai food from the neighbouring Cooked food Market on Nam Long Shan Road, Aberdeen.




      Related contents:
      Soundscapes of "Incidents of Travel" Hong Kong;
      Storify "Incidents of Travel";
      Flickr album of the four tours of "Incidents of Travel".

      All photos: Spring Workshop.




      Samson Young's "Incidents of Travel: Hong Kong" tour

      As part of Moderation(s), the year-long collaboration in 2013 between Witte de With, Rotterdam, and Spring Workshop, Hong Kong, curators-in-residence Latitudes have invited artist Samson Young to develop a day-long tour of Hong Kong retelling the city and artistic concerns through personal itineraries and waypoints.  

      To complement the tour, please check the archive of twitter and facebook and soundcloud posts.

      Follow Twitter: #IncidentsOfTravel #Moderations 

      "Incidents of Travel: Hong Kong"
      by Samson Young
      7 February 2013
        
      I am very envious of artists who are able describe their practices in a manner that is concise, succinct, and consistent. To tell one’s life story is also to confess. I purge my catalog of works and rebuild my identity (as told by images, sounds, and self-descriptions) every couple of years. Moderation(s)asks that I create a tour that “articulates the city and (my) artistic practice through routes and waypoints.” Are routes and waypoints more authentic than a studio visit? Are the vernacular, the eccentric and the marginal more “real,” in the same way that punk is real and techno apparently isn’t? The pressure to define the unique and the authentic is perhaps growing more urgent with globalization; but behind each assiduous defense of the authentic lies what Regina Bendix calls “an unarticulated anxiety of losing the subject” (Bendix 1997). 

      During this tour, I eavesdrop on my own works in the presence of six others. We take an early morning sound-walk around the Kwun Tong industrial district, visit a site near the City Hall in Central where the now demolished Queen's Pier was once located, and trespass the frontier closed area near the Hong Kong-China border. In between locations, we listen to recordings of music and/or read texts that have informed my work one way or another.

       Sound walk begins at 75 Hung To Road in the industrial district of Kwun Tong.


      Sound-walk: 75 Hung To Road, Kwun Tong 

      We begin the tour at 75 Hung To Road. I will conduct again a sound walk that I created back in 2009. Participants of the sound-walk follow me on a route through the Kwun Tong industrial district. To create this work I walked the same route a number of times at different dates and times, generating one full recording in each walk through. I then edited these recordings into a single sound track, to which the participants listen during the sound-walk. During the sound-walk, I follow my own footstep by listening to the sound marks in the sound track, to ensure that I am in sync with my recorded presence.

       Samson Young leads us while listening to the 44 min. soundtrack "Kwun Tong Soundwalk" on mp3 players.


       Young takes us through the bus station.

        Photo: Spring Workshop.


       Condemned industrial buildings around Kwun Tong.
      Around Kwun Tong's shops and markets. Photo: Spring Workshop.
      More condemned buildings. When Young recorded the soundtrack in 2009 these places were still open, a proof of the swift gentrification of Kwun Tong.
      Short pause at Yue Man Square Rest Garden. Photo: Spring Workshop.


      Soundwalk-ing in a bus terminus. Photo: Spring Workshop. 

      Tsim Bei Tsui, Frontier Closed Area 

      I was born in Hong Kong but mostly educated in Australia. I’ve always felt that children of Mainland Chinese parents had an easier time answering the question, “Where are you from?” They simply say, “I’m Chinese.” I always feel more natural saying I’m from Hong Kong, rather than plainly stating that I’m Chinese. Or, if I say I’m Chinese, I feel the need to add the footnote that I was born in Hong Kong. I am frankly confused by all of this. For the longest time I avoided identity politics in my work, but the national education saga in 2012 prompted me to revisit this issue.

      Hong Kong and Mainland China are physically separated by the ShenzhenRiver and a great wall of wired fencing, and south to the border are restricted zones known as the Frontier Closed Area. Entry into the Frontier Closed Area without an official permit is strictly forbidden. In October 2005, the then chief executive Donald Tsang announced a proposal to drastically reduce the Frontier Closed Area. In February 2012, 740 hectares of land were initially opened up for public access. The proposal will be implemented in phases, and other areas will soon follow suit. Since July 2012, I had been systemically collecting the sound of places and/or objects that separate the two regions. I recorded the vibration of the wired fencing with contact microphones, and the water sounds of the Shenzhen River with hydrophones. I rearranged these recordings into sound compositions. I then re-transcribed these sound collages into graphical notations.


        Walking through the fields that border China.

       Nearby Kaw Liu Village.


       Pig farm guarded by angry dogs.

       New development to house relocated villagers following highway construction.

      En route. Photo: Spring Workshop
       Self-build constructions/storage along the way.


      Young introducing the making of the soundtrack "Liquid Borders" we are about to listen to.

      Since early 2012, 740 hectares of land have been opened up for public access, and buildings have been constructed nearer the fence which runs along the Shenzhen river.


       Bordering the fence while listening to the "Liquid Border" soundtrack.



      Field recording. Photo: Spring Workshop

      Queen’s Pier in Edinburgh Place.

      Queen's Pier was a public pier in central in front of the City Hall. For decades it served not only as a public pier but also as a major ceremonial arrival and departure point. The pier witnessed the official arrival in Hong Kong of all of Hong Kong's governors since 1925; Elizabeth II landed there in 1975, as did the Prince and Princess of Wales in 1989. On 26 April 2007 the pier officially ceased operation. The government’s plan to demolish the pier to make way for a new highway was met with fierce opposition by conservationists. Despite the public outcry, Queen's Pier was demolished in the February of 2008.

      I was living in New York when all of this happened. In 2009 I composed and directed a music theatre work entitled “God Save the Queen.” The work started out as a requiem for the Queen’s Pier. It evolved into a hymn to the structures, both physical and symbolic, of my teenage days – which were also the last of the colony’s. The performance was accompanied by a mixture of live footage from five theatre-based CCTV cameras, and pre-recorded clips of screen icon Helena Law Lan (who often played royalty for TV), dressed as the Queen.

       1956 City Hall building that connected with the now demolished Queen's Pier in Edinburgh Place.

      Photo: Spring Workshop

      The lotus pond, University of Hong Kong 

      I was what you might call a “straight-down-the-center” composer to begin with. For over a decade I operated only in the concert in the capacity of a composer of the Western classical tradition. Now I do all kinds of weird things in all sorts of weird places. Chan Hing-yan, my mentor during my years at HKU, had a looming influence on me. I think a lot of what I do today is a reaction against what (I imagine that) I’d learnt during those formative years – a sort of a “creative misreading” as Harold Bloom would put it.


       To end the tour Samson reads a passage of his dissertation about his approach to music composition and cultural politics.
      Talking nearby the lotus pond at "Hong Kong U". Photo: Spring Workshop


      Samson Young (1979) is a composer, sound artist and media artist. Young received training in computer music and composition at Princeton University under the supervision of computer music pioneer Paul Lansky. He is currently an assistant professor in sonic art and physical computing at the School of Creative Media, City University of Hong Kong. Young is also the principle investigator at the Laboratory for Ubiquitous Musical Expression (L.U.M.E), and artistic director of the experimental sound advocacy organization Contemporary Musiking.
In 2007, he became the first from Hong Kong to receive the Bloomberg Emerging Artist Award for his audio-visual project “The Happiest Hour”. His brainwave non-performance “I am thinking in a room, different from the one you are hearing in now” received a Jury Selection award at the Japan Media Art Festival, and an honorary mention at the digital music and sound art category of Prix Ars Electronica.


      Festival presentations and honors include: Prix Ars Electronica (Austria 2012); Japan Media Art Festival (Japan 2012); Sydney Springs International New Music Festival (Australia 2001), the Canberra International Music Festival (Australia 2008), ISCM World Musid Days (Australia 2010), MONA FOMA Festival of Music and Art (2011); the Bowdoin International Music Festival (US 2004), Bang on a Can Music Summer Music Festival (US 2005), Perspectives International Festival of Media Art (US 2009); Internationales Musikinstitut Darmstadt (Germany 2006); Dark Music Days (Iceland 2008); Kuala Lumpur Contemporary Music Festival (Malaysia 2009); amongst others. His music received performances by Hong Kong Sinfonietta, New Jersey Symphony Orchestra, London NASH Ensemble, City Chamber Orchestra of Hong Kong, Bang on a Can and summer institute fellows, Network for New Music, New Millennium Ensemble, SO Percussion, Sydney Song Company, Hong Kong New Music Ensemble, MIVOS Quartet, among others.




      Related contents:
      Soundscapes of "Incidents of Travel";
      Storify "Incidents of Travel";
      Flickr album of the four tours of "Incidents of Travel";
      'Incidents of travel' tour with Nadim Abbas on 19 January 2013;
      'Incidents of Travel' tour with Yuk King Tan on 24 January 2013.
      'Incidents of Travel' tour with Ho Sin Tung on 29 January 2013;


      All photos: Latitudes | www.lttds.org (except when noted otherwise in the photo caption)
      Creative Commons Licence
      This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.




      Tour of Devil's Peak and the Museum of Coastal Defence

      Alongside the four tours led by Hong Kong artists Nadim Abbas, Yuk King Tan, Ho Sin Tung and Samson Young, Latitudes is also venturing into the city, researching around local forms of vernacular collection display and eccentric attractions. This encompasses museum-like retail spaces, or ‘marginal’ sculptural displays, as well as joining pre-existing tours.

      On 30th January, Latitudes joined the "Devils's Peak and Museum of Coastal Defence" tour organised by Walk Hong Kong and led by former British Army officer and War World II specialist Martin Heyes, who has lived in Hong Kong for nearly 40 years. Heyes is a passionate and insightful guide for anyone interested in the context and details of the 1941 Japanese invasion of Hong Kong.


      Following are abstracts of text from Walk Hong Kong website and images of our route.


      Wilson Trail up to Devil's Peak.

      "At the end of the 19th century, and early into the 20th, the British authorities were very concerned about perceived threats to the safety of their colonial possessions in the Far East from other European powers. Hong Kong fell into this category. Accordingly the British Government constructed impressive military fortifications to protect their imperial possessions, and one of these was at Devil's Peak at the eastern extremity of the Kowloon peninsula."


      Kowloon and Victoria Harbour.



      "The large fortification constructed to defend the eastern approaches to Hong Kong harbour consisted of 2 fixed gun battery positions, together with a Redoubt at the summit of Devil's Peak which later became the Fire Command Headquarters for the eastern part of Hong Kong."


      Overgrown trench.


       View from Devil's Peak Redoubt.

      "Although the position was eventually considered redundant and was in fact decommissioned before the outbreak of the Pacific War, the location was the scene of bitter fighting between the courageous Indian soldiers of the Rajput Battalion and the attacking Japanese army during the battle for Hong Kong in December 1941, immediately prior to the British evacuation of the mainland to Hong Kong island." 
       Gough battery.

      "Following our visit to the gun battery position on Devil's Peak, we walk down through the seafood restaurant area of Lei Yue Mun to catch the ferry to Sai Wan Ho on Hong Kong island. A short taxi ride then brings us to the Museum of Coastal Defence, housed inside the late Victorian-era Lei Yue Mun Fort."


      Descending towards Lei Yue Mun.

       Lei Yu Mun promenade in eastern Kowloon.


      Seafood restaurants' fish tanks in Lei Yue Mun.


       Lei Yu Mun bay.

      "The fort occupied a strategic position guarding the eastern approaches to Victoria Harbour. The British military built barracks here as early as 1844, but these were abandoned shortly afterwards. In 1885, in the face of perceived aggrandizement from other European powers, artillery barracks were constructed with a redoubt at the core of the fortifications."


        Devil's Peak (right) seen from the Museum of Coastal Defence.

      Display in the Museum of Coastal Defence showing the life of a British soldier in the 19th Century.

       The Hong Kong Telegraph from January 1902 – including a prominent ad for beloved Brit product Bovril.
        Japanese naval flag & pistols from the December 1941 invasion of Hong Kong.

      Follow the project: #IncidentsOfTravel #Moderations

      To complement the tour, please check the storify archive with tweets, sound recordings and photodocumentation.


      Moderation(s) is a year-long programme occurring throughout 2013 between Witte de With, Rotterdam, and Spring Workshop, Hong Kong. 



      All photos: Latitudes | www.lttds.org

      Creative Commons Licence
      This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.





      Yuk King Tan's "Incidents of Travel: Hong Kong" tour

      As part of Moderation(s), the year-long collaboration in 2013 between Witte de With, Rotterdam, and Spring Workshop, Hong Kong, curators-in-residence Latitudes have invited artist Yuk King Tan (China/New Zealand) to develop a day-long tour of Hong Kong retelling the city and artistic concerns through personal itineraries and waypoints.

      To complement the tour, please check the twitter and facebook and soundcloud posts via storify.

      Follow on Twitter: #IncidentsOfTravel #Moderations



      'Incidents of Travel: Hong Kong'
      by Yuk King Tan
       

      24 January 2013

      My art practice is a series of negotiations, folding ideas, curiosities, structures and translations which together form stories that are not entirely expected or make narratives in a slightly unfamiliar tongue. I am curious about systems of value: what is valuable and how does it appreciate? Who defines value and is that control static or creative? Where and how do we house what is seen as precious and what is finally disposable?

      A large part of the tour is not only about looking at sites but about visiting the people that inhabit these places and hearing their stories. Connecting different inhabitants of Hong Kong with the tour may even intervene in how certain groups see their roles. In Hong Kong people live parallel lives. It is ironic that in such an over-populated hyper urban city, people cohabitating in one home can find themselves in completely separate, disparate existences. Part of my art process tries to investigative and re-form, and part of the tour looks at the positioning between host and visitor, migrant and home, belief and skepticism. 

      At the first art talk I ever gave I dressed as a tour guide, and with a loose mid-west American accent, I narrated a tour about art practice by highlighting art work seen and made and books read as various ‘attractions’, which were ingested over a travel slide presentation and onboard snacks. Like a twisted Greyhound bus tour complete with uniform and a cheerily dismissive attitude, I was interested in the distancing devices defining one’s art practice around the performance of presenting artwork in general. Any tour is an act of intimacy and distance. The act of memory is also a creative and theatrical set of gestures. This tour is a set around actions and meetings which are intimate, truthful and theatrical just as Hong Kong is a city rife with the potential for drama, fantasy and invention. I hope that the people we meet on the tour share in a larger discussion about what is valuable and what cannot be quantified.
       

      The 12-storey meeting house buildling of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Wan Chai, Hong Kong, administrative headquarters of the Mormon church in Asia.


      Wanchai Meetinghouse

      In a early artwork “I am the light of the world, Dlrow eht fo thgil eht ma I” I made a video about a photograph made by group of New Zealand missionaries who went to southern China in the 1940s to spread the word of Christianty – a mission that unfortunately was a political and social disaster. The work was an image of the missionaries created entirely from firecrackers. In the video loop the firecrackers explode into a blaze of furious golden fire until the footage is reversed, setting up a continuous cycle of destruction and reformation.

       Elder Elliot. Courtesy Yuk King Tan.

      Part of my general research is about the economic moves of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) as they are set up Hong Kong as a base to bring the Mormon Church into Mainland China. The Wanchai Meetinghouse is a 12-storey building that serves as meeting place for 12 wards, the administrative headquarters for the LDS Church in the Asia region and, with three apartments on top floor housing the church ‘Area Presidency’, as the obvious symbol of the reach of the Mormon faith. 

      Designed by a Mormon architect Leland Gray and his son Stephen Gray its presence suggests that one of the most regimented Christian religions in the world will also move towards a strong presence in China. Inside the Meetinghouse is a maze of rooms: sports courts, multi-purpose prayer-zones, music and classrooms all decorated with spiritually focused paintings. The Church of the Latter Day Saints requires one-tenth of their follower’s income as part of the tilling process and also committed unpaid service such as the two-year missionary tours undertaken by 19-25 year old Mormons. I became interested in the missionaries ideas about language, belief, politics and service. Most of the missionaries are required to learn as much about their host country and language of the country as possible, they even have at times have a new terminology that fuses the slang from the host country with the language of the faith and church. The Wan Chai Meetinghouse has become a type of “one-stop baptism shop” where Mainland Chinese people can be anointed a ‘Mormon’ in just twelve hours to try to circumnavigate the backlash from communist officials. As most of the churches in Hong Kong are run on a tight economic business model, the possibility of using the city as a base into China’s billion possible new recruits can be seen of as an golden, priceless opportunity.

      Lobby area. 

      Sports area.

       One of the three chapels.

      Our guides share some of their musical skills.

       One of the many congregation/teaching rooms.

       
      Chung King Mansions and the nearby Mirador Mansions on Nathan Road, include low-budget guesthouses, electronic stores, clothing shops, sari stores, curry houses, tailors, and foreign exchange office. It has been estimated that 4,000 people live in the Mansions.

      Chung King and Mirador Mansions 

      Built in the 1960s Chung King Mansions were built for a higher level of economic strata because of their height and type of construction. Now they house the largest amount of guesthouses and the greatest level of ethnic diversity in Hong Kong. It has been called the by Time magazine “Best Example of Globalization in Action” or by Gordon Mathews “the backside or globalism”. The economic trade passing through these two buildings has been significant enough to have a cause and effect in the entire region. Hong Kong anthropologist Gordon Mathews states that 20% of the mobile phones in sub-Saharan Africa have been traded through these buildings. He goes on to say:
       
      “Chungking Mansions figures as an important depot of the worldwide movement of goods and capital to and from the developing world - low-end globalization”, reports CNN.go. These two buildings are described by Surajit Chakravarty in his ‘Dissertation in Urban planning – Social Sciences’ as “spaces of market-culturalism with tensions arising from this hyper "market-culturalism", a socio-spatial condition (or entity) whereby identity is expressed through the market, legitimacy sought through consumption, and interaction between communities is marked by a spirit of competition, with tensions persisting under the façade of cooperation.”

      I became interested in the light well structures when I first arrived in Hong Kong. They seemed something like a physical metaphor for the very density of change that Hong Kong aspires too achieve. The pipes and internal systems climbing up the buildings are a form of root system and, as the bars barricading the top of the wells are unable to prevent large collection of rubbish thrown at the bottom, the wells suggest the contrasts between daylight with dark obscurity, connection versus containment. A friend, who is a caretaker of the poorest housing estates in Hong Kong, once described a story where a young man wrenched off the bars at the top of the light well and from a cocktail of hallucinogens and perhaps suicidal thoughts jumped down the well. After hitting most of the air conditioners and injuring himself on the metal clothing racks he hit the bottom but survived as his body was expectedly cushioned by the huge amount of garbage that had been tossed down there.

      With regards to Chung King mansions, Hong Kong filmmaker Wong Kar-Wai has said that “…its 200 lodgings, it is a mix of different cultures ... a legendary place where the relations between the people are very complicated. It has always fascinated and intrigued me. It is also a permanent hotspot for the cops in HK because of the illegal traffic that takes place there. That mass-populated and hyperactive place is a great metaphor for the town herself…”
       
      At Chung King Mansions we will be lead through the floors by another filmmaker, Berlin-based Elke Marhöfer who currently lives in the mansions recording and researching the stories from African traders for a film about exchange, migrants and trading with sub-Saharan Africa.


      Berlin-based artist Elke Marhöfer joins us for a bit during our Mansions visit and tells us about the filming project she has been conducting in recent weeks focusing on the trade between Africa and Asia. Photo: Heman Chong.


       Elke recommends Gordon Matthews' book "Ghetto at the center of the world. ChungKing Mansions, Hong Kong" (The University of Chicago Press, 2011).


      Advertising low-budget lodging in the corridors of Chungking Mansions.


      First floor of Chungking Mansions.
       
      Boxed merchandise in Chungking Mansions.

       Mirador Mansions (more photos here).
       
       Notice board in Mirador Mansions.


      Tailor workshop in Mirador Mansions.


      In the stairwell of Mirador Mansions. Photo: Mimi Brown.
       
       Monica's enterprises, a sari store in Mirador Mansions.


       Courtyard of Mirador Mansions.


      Laundry and A/C at Mirador Mansions.
       
      Maximising laundry space. 


       A lost mexican sombrero in the Mirador Mansions.
      Interior façades, Mirador Mansions. 


      Kowloon Mosque

      The tour of the Kowloon Mosque is lead by an Imam, Muhammad Ashrad. Both the mansions and the Kowloon Mosque hold 4,000 people and in many ways the two structures have defined the urban population of that area. As the largest and most attended mosque in Hong Kong it also shaped the development of that area, servicing and encouraging the Muslim population to stay and work in close proximity for prayer and for counsel. Most large religious institutions are constructed around notions of belief and grandiosity. The chandeliered grandeur of the main prayer space of the mosque has becomes its own inspirational jewel at the heart of the Muslim in Hong Kong yet by keeping the Muslim population centered around one area, it can be seen as problematic, creating a type of social isolation tank which acerbates the homogeneity of Hong Kong’s cultural make-up.


       Kowloon Mosque and Islamic Centre in Nathan Road, largest in the city. Photo: Mimi Brown.


      Yuk King exploring the roof of the Mosque.


       Tea break with macanese-portuguese pastéis de nata and chicken pie at Macau Dai Pai Dong.


      Entrance to the Chai Wan recycling depot, focus of Yuk King Tan's video 'The Limit of Visibility' (2012).


      Chai Wan Working Cargo Area – Recycling Industry 

      My home overlooks the recycling depot of Chai Wan and it’s a daily activity to watch the progress of the boats filled with compacted paper and scrap metal move through the harbour. Two of my art projects have looked at value in terms of recycling and labour. The video ‘Scavenger’ followed the work of elderly recycle-trolley workers, named ‘scavengers’ in Hong Kong, and in the video ‘Limit of Visibility’ I filmed the progress of the recycling material around the cargo areas and as it is loaded on ships that take the material to various sites in Hong Kong and China.

      Still from the video 'Scavenger' (2008). Courtesy Yuk King Tan.

      The government owns all of Hong Kong's cargo working areas but private operators lease parts of the cargo bay from the government so that the refuse industry balances in tension between private enterprise and public management. One of the operators of the Chai Wan cargo bay will take us on a tour of the area and talk about his business working in the district over the last four years.

      The compacted cubes of paper and cardboard, craned from trucks into formal grids carpeting the long barges, can seen as a refuse landscape, the material creating its own mountains and valleys. Compacted into modernist blocks, the previously loose paper detritus is the byproduct of a booming information industry. Distributed between masses of ships and industrial crane equipment, this material is prepared to become another kind of vast colony. Sent to less developed countries further broken down and salvaged, the waste material is a literal paper trail about the scale, power and wastage of economic development and trade. The sheer tonnage of the paper and the beauty of its compressed form about to undergo future transformation are all tied to the fluctuating market value attached to refuse material.

      Still from the video "The Limit of Visibility" (2012). Courtesy Yuk King Tan.

      The recycling industry that brought in so much revenue through the last ten years to ‘recycle cities’ in China has been stymied by the global market slowdown. There are times where the material shipped to China has lost most of its share value over the travel time between ports. The paper cubes are like giant books from the transactions of the city, which now may only be used as landfill. There were stories from China that refuse paper blocks are being used as less than stable filler in creating reclaimed land. For Hong Kong, waste and recycling will always be a complicated issue in a dense and expensive land and property-controlled city.

      Chai Wan depot transports metal, paper and plastic to mainland China and Taiwan. 

      Boat route Chai Wan to Joss House Bay.


      Fishing Boat Tour

      The Chai Wan cargo bay operator who has an office on the Cargo Bay, also runs a small charter boat service from Chai Wan.

      There is also a fishing boat area close by and we will take a small boat out into the harbour to look at the Hong Kong coastline from both urban and mountain landscape perspective over the sea. The famous Chinese painting trope of mountains and mist painting can be literally seen in Hong Kong landscape. I think of the philosophical traditions of the mountains and mist ink painting or mountain water as an analogy to the values of Hong Kong. The symbolism of a singular figure against nature, or in this case the mountains shrouding a hyper-dense urbanization can be seen best over sunset in a creaky fishing boat navigating between the large cargo tankers and cruise liners.

      While on the harbour we will visit the largest Tin Hau Temple in Tai Mui Wan (or Joss House Bay) which can only be accessed by water as well as the floating fishing villages of Fat Tong Mun.
         
       The Tin Hau Temple at Joss House Bay from the water, the oldest and largest Tin Hau Temple built in 1266.

       View of the pier and the bay from the Tin Hau Temple, Joss House Bay.


       Floating fish farms in the coast of Tung Lung Island.

       Sunset over the bay.


      Filipina Summit

      We end with the tour with a dinner at a tiny boarding house where nine domestic helpers will make a meal from the Philippines and discuss political and personal issues around life as a Filipina woman working in Hong Kong.

      These woman are friends, some of whom I have met, as part of a previous project ‘Helper’ 2009 in which a group of domestic helpers inhabited an gallery in Hong Kong to become both living sculptures and gallery invigilators for the duration of the exhibition.

      Excerpt from Beth Laygo Interview – part of the 2009 project ‘Helper’ presented at 1aSpace, Hong Kong:

      "I am a person behind everyone. We are always invisible, and if you want to call your work something, well, it should be just H, like Hey, or just like the sound ‘Hhh”, or H_____ with a gap. That’s like us - without a name. I have to subdue my personality, be in the background. Sometimes I feel as if I am losing myself piece by piece. Everyday a little part is gone, the worse thing is that it’s your self-confidence. And as time goes on you are lost, you have to be humble, and it’s so hard to be quiet all the time. You know… it's like I left my personality home in the Philippines.

      We have a relationship based on verbs. My employer does not speak English, and I do not yet know how to speak Cantonese. We always use verbs in our everyday life, so we do action words. Not nouns or adjectives, the verb relationship.

      Helper Beth. Courtesy: Yuk King Tan 

      It’s okay to be called maid, because we are like that. But sometimes it’s so degrading. Just like a helper, you are really helping and when you are really helping you feel satisfaction, you feel joy and happiness and you feel some fulfillment. Just like, ‘maid’, is a bit above a slave. It’s so very low. When called a maid, it is a compulsory word. You are obliged to do it and have no choice.

      That is an irony, even for us, that we are going to other countries taking care of others kids to have more money for our kids. Just like them, the employers, they entrust us their kids and we bring them up so they can make more money. It is bad, but needed in this kind of society, for this kind of lifestyle that we all want. Because we must enjoy life. It is in our nature to seek what others have. Though it is sometimes more about wants than necessities.

      The most difficult part is the adjustment period. It’s a very long adjustment period. Both parties must put up with each other; you have your own attitudes, upbringing and values. So of course I try to correct mine, but also you must adjust to my values.

      I will do in the gallery space what needs to be done, if I need to sweep the floor I will sweep, if there is dust I will dust the pictures. But we are used to it, is very hard to get away from your routine. When you are used to doing it, it is very hard to stop. The routine is sometimes boring; I am a person who likes to do fieldwork. It’s so boring if it’s just about the floor and house. Not everyday you have someone to talk to because everyday is very busy. It’s so comforting to be able to talk.

      It’s quite bad; the Philippines is poor because there is so much politicking. They think about politics without considering the needs of the people. The people get poorer and poorer. I studied accountancy. To be working is a necessity; no mother wants to be away from her kids. We are the ‘light of the home’, yet we must go out and earn money.

      I cannot explain art; art is something other people have like a gift, its drawing and pictures. Art is a gift, something that not everyone appreciates. Something its about dreams, sometimes its when things that are extra good. I feel so honored and thankful; it’s not everybody that wants us to be an artwork. My daughter is good at drawing."



      Yuk King Tan (China/New Zealand) is an artist who lives and works in Hong Kong, negotiating issues such as bi-cultural and multi-cultural identity within a constantly evolving post-colonial society.


      Her work, which includes detailed drawings in ash and smoke residue, exploding fire cracker installations, photographs taken from rockets, and a giant cardboard HSBC lion pushed through the streets of Hong Kong, is often poetic and frequently suggestive, connecting highly different subject-matters and mediums. The meta-themes in the artist’s work unveil interests in cultural delineations, global migration, and a personal relationship to world-defining issues such as value and economy.


      Yuk King Tan has had solo and group exhibitions, most notably at the Hong Kong Arts Centre (1996); Ludwig Forum für Internationale Kunst, Aachen (1999); Museum Fridericianum, Kassel (1999 and 2002); Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (2000); Camden Arts Centre, London (2000); Wellington City Gallery, New Zealand (2005); and Artists Space, New York (2006); Kunstverein, Hamburg (2008). She has held residencies at Dunedin, New Plymouth, Queensland, Aachen, Sydney, and London and has participated in international biennials in Queensland, Vilnius, Auckland, and São Paulo. She graduated from Elam School of Fine Arts, Auckland University, New Zealand in 1993. She has taught and lectured at graduate and post-graduate art schools. 


      RELATED CONTENT:
      Soundscapes of "Incidents of Travel";
      Storify "Incidents of Travel";
      Flickr album of the four tours of "Incidents of Travel";
      'Incidents of travel' tour with Nadim Abbas on 19 January 2013;
      'Incidents of Travel' tour with Ho Sin Tung on 29 January 2013;
      'Incidents of Travel' tour with Samson Young on 7 February 2013.

      This is the blog of the independent curatorial office Latitudes. Follow us on Facebook and @LTTDS.
      All photos:
      Latitudes | www.lttds.org (except when noted otherwise in the photo caption).
      Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.




      Ho Sin Tung "Incidents of Travel: Hong Kong" tour

      As part of Moderation(s), the year-long collaboration in 2013 between Witte de With, Rotterdam, and Spring Workshop, Hong Kong, curators-in-residence Latitudes have invited artist Ho Sin Tung to develop a day-long tour of Hong Kong retelling the city and artistic concerns through personal itineraries and waypoints. 

      Ho Sin Tung's tour of Hong Kong revisits shooting spots (which are still accesible) from her video "Folie à deux" (2011), in which people read aloud their favorite passages with their back to the camera at the spots they chose. Through her reading-and-listening relationship with her readers, intimate and unique memories are created in the locations.


      To complement the tour, please check the twitter and facebook and soundcloud posts via storify.

      Follow on Twitter: #IncidentsOfTravel #Moderations



      'Incidents of Travel: Hong Kong'
      by Ho Sin Tung 

      29 January 2013

      In 2011, I made a video called “Folie à deux” (trailer here), named after a psychological term describing “a condition in which symptoms of a mental disorder, such as the same delusional beliefs or ideas, occur simultaneously in two individuals who share a close relationship or association”. The video is a simple depiction of 17 people reading aloud from a passage from their favourite book with their back to the camera, at different indoor and outdoor locations chosen by each reader


      I know many people read, but only a few read books in a more personal way. The 17 people in “Folie à deux”  were carefully selected as I sensed something “passionate” about them and their reading habits. Despite being a friend of the readers, I have never really discussed literature with them

      The places in which the readers chose to read are significant to each, and some locations I am unfamiliar with. However, through filming, listening to their reading, staring at their backs and spending some time with them before and after filming , stories and memories of the places are created. The video gets its name because, through reading, readers unwittingly unburden themselves - you can even see their fragility at that moment - and I am part of it

      I intend to re-visit each location (marked in this map) and by revisiting, I hope to re-tell the stories of each reader and the books they chose. Most of the places included in the trip are actually art spaces and artists’ studio. But through their stories, each place becomes less general and more intimate.

       Meeting in Tai Po, New Territories, Hong Kong
      Cho Yun Kei, a favourite noodle spot in Sin Tung's family, and a very popular destination in Tai Po and beyond.

      Breakfast in Tai Po.

       Breakfast conversations. 


       Wandering through Tai Po.

        The framers Sin Tung works with in Tai Po.

      Tai Po chatting. Artist Ho Sin Tung with Mimi Brown of Spring and Max Andrews of Latitudes.

       Observing a school where kids are practicing percussion instruments for Chinese New Year. Listen to the field recording here. Photo: Spring Workshop.

       The 'hood.
       Amazing family-run bean curd shop "Grandma Tofu Pudding" in Tai Po.

        Delightful Tai Po treats: warm bean curd flower (also called "soya bean custard" / "bean curd dessert" / "bean curd jelly") at "Grandma Tofu Pudding". 
       Beautiful greens in Tai Po Market.

      At Lo Wu station, mainlanders openly smuggle things like baby milk powder from Hong Kong.


      Sheung Shui dialogues: "...and that? What is it? / Hmmm, I don't know... / it seems difficult to eat! / Do you think it's sweet or salty? / It looks more like an offering or maybe used for New Year decoration / I think they look like Wallace & Gromit-like fruit!

       Queuing for lunch at the Guong Shing Ice Café in Sheung Shui.

      Observing our surroundings while queuing up for lunch. Photo: Spring Workshop.

      Across the street from the lunch break in Sheung Shui.
      Lunch break: Pinneaple bun, a soft bun with sugar on top and a slice of butter inside.


      Recurrent in the Hong Kong shopping landscape: foldable chairs and tables for sale.


       Sheung Shui citizen amongst noodles and eggs. 

      Nam Sang Wai, New Territories, Hong Kong 
      Reader: Wong Wai Yin
      Book: "Thomas the Obscure" by Maurice Blanchot

      Wong Wai Yin is a Hong Kong artist married to Kwan Sheung Chi, also an artist. They are well known for their collaborative work, including a long performance piece,“Everything Goes Wrong for the Poor Couple”. Their work often references literature and they have a wonderful selection of books in their home bookshelf.  

      Wong Wai Yin brought me to Nam Sang Wai, a place I had never previously visited, and where they had their wedding photographs taken. There has been great discussion over the years about developing the wetland area of Nam San Wai - one of the most beautiful areas in Hong Kong attracting many film directors, “photographers” and their “models”.  

      Near where we filmed Wong Wai Yin reading, another couple was also taking wedding photos. These things reoccur over and over again in the grassy fields!
      Afternoon walk around Nam Sang Wai wetlands.

      Exploring Nam Sang Wai wetlands. Photo: Spring Workshop.

        Abandoned house in Nam Sang Wai.

      Photo: Spring Workshop

       Vegetation around Nam Sang Wai wetlands.

       For the unwanted visitors, a "scare cormorant" at Nam Sang Wai wetlands.

      Further exploration around Nam Sang Wai wetlands.
      Abandoned house, favourite spot for Hong Kong TV drama kidnapping scenes.


       From here, Sin Tung filmed Wong Wai Yin segment in the video "Folie à deux".

       View from the window.

      A busy wedding photo location indeed!

      ACO, Foo Tak Building, Wan Chai
      Reader: Li João Ye Chun
      Book: "Slam Dunk" by Takehiko Inoue  

      The owner of the Fuk Tak Building in Wan Chai offers cheap rent to some Hong Kong artists. There is also an English bookshop called ACO on the first floor; not just a bookshop but also a multi-use space for meetings, screenings, and education.

      João is a former work colleague whom I admire and is now studying for a PhD in Berlin. He is very left wing and intelligent, but never in an intimidating way. I expected him to read something very academic, but rather than choosing a writer like Kant or Hegel, he picked a Japanese comic book that he liked as a boy. It’s a comic book about basketball. 

      He chose the last basketball match in the comic, and read aloud the count down of the match’s final seconds: 2 seconds, 0.8 seconds, 0.1 seconds, 0 seconds… 

      He chose something from pop culture and found a philosophical aspect to it.

       ACO bookstore. Photo: Spring Workshop.


      Outside Hong Kong Arts Centre 
      Reader: Alice Ho
      Book: "Cry, the Beloved Country" by Alan Paton

      Alice has worked for the Goethe Institute in Hong Kong for many years. I first met her while exhibiting there. 

      She is a very energetic person and full of stories, I had a really good time working with her. The book has always reminded her of her father’s death.  

      While reading, a nearby street musician – unexpectedly - played sad music.


       
      Alice Ho from the Goethe Institute.

       Crab buns dinner at "The 369 Shanghai Restaurant" in Wan Chai.



      Ho Sin Tung (1986, Hong Kong) graduated from the Fine Arts Department of Chinese University in Hong Kong. She is currently a full-time artist and has a studio located in Fotan, Hong Kong. Sin Tung’s recent work predominantly uses pencil, graphite and watercolour in combination with found and ready-made images – such as stickers, maps, charts, rubber-stamps and timelines. These are reinterpreted to narrate stories of places, relationships and periods of time often within a considered, objective historical setting.  


      Her most recent exhibitions include “Hong Kong Inter-vivos Film Festival” in Hanart TZ Gallery, Hong Kong (2012), “You Are Running A Business Called None Of My Business” in Abu Dhabi Art Fair (2011), “Folie à duex” in Experimenta, Hong Kong (2011) and “Don’t Shoot the Messenger” in Hanart TZ Gallery, Hong Kong (2010). She also participated in group shows like “Hong Kong Eye” in Saatchi Gallery, London (2012), “The 9th Shanghai Biennale” in the Shanghai Museum of Contemporary Art (2012), “Octopus” in Hanina Contemporary, Tel Aviv, Israel (2011), “Urban Utopia : if and only if” in Goethe Institute, Hong Kong (2011), “Drawing Out Conversation : Taipei” in Nanhai Gallery, Taipei (2010).

      More information via Hanart TZ Gallery, Kong Kong.




      Related contents:
      Soundscapes of "Incidents of Travel";
      Storify "Incidents of Travel";
      Flickr album of the four tours of "Incidents of Travel";
      'Incidents of travel' tour with Nadim Abbas on 19 January 2013;
      'Incidents of Travel' tour with Yuk King Tan on 24 January 2013;
      'Incidents of Travel' tour with Samson Young on 7 February 2013.

      All photos: Latitudes | www.lttds.org (except when noted otherwise in the photo caption)

      Creative Commons Licence
      This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.




      "Temple and Feng Shui Tour", a guided walk around Hong Kong Island & Kowloon

      Alongside the four tours led by Hong Kong artists Nadim Abbas, Yuk King Tan, Ho Sin Tung and Samson Young, Latitudes is also venturing into the city, researching around local forms of vernacular collection display and eccentric attractions. This encompasses museum-like retail spaces, or ‘marginal’ sculptural displays, as well as joining pre-existing tours.

      The "Temple and Feng Shui Tour" that we joined on the 22nd January around Hong Kong Island & Kowloon began by looking at Norman Foster's Hong Kong HSBC building in Admiralty, built according to Feng Shui principles.

       The HSBC building has a large wide open area (i.e. the Statue Square) in front of it, with no other large buildings blocking the view of Victoria Harbour thus a big plus point for good feng shui.
       
      Natural sunlight makes its way inside the building via a movable platform regulated by computer which directs sunlight towards giant mirrors at the top of the atrium.

      ATMs in the atrium.

      Left lion statue (focus of Yuk King Tan's 'Scavanger' (2008) video) protecting the entrance of the building.
      Two escalators access the building; three after the first floor (4 is a superstitious number as, when pronouned in Cantonese it sounds like the word for "death", hence the building doesn't have floors 4, 14 or 24).

      I.M. Pei's Bank of China Tower has notoriously bad Feng Shui, nearby buildings try to compensate with shield-like shapes and curved corners.

      View from 43rd floor of Bank of China Tower towards West Kowloon.

      Wong Tai Sin temple (Sik Sik Yuen) where people worship Taoism, Buddhism and Confucianism.

      Main altar to worship Master Wong Tai Sin.

       Incense sticks and offerings to Master Wong Tai Sin.



      Nan Liam garden built in the style of a Tang Garden.
       
      Blue Pond in the Nan Liam garden.
       
      Pavilion of absolute perfection at the Nan Liam garden, Diamond Hill, Kowloon.
       
      The Rockery gallery in Nan Liam garden, "a collection of rocks excavated from the Red River in its stretch through Dahua County in Guangxi Province, China."

      Chi Lin Nunnery in Diamond Hill, Kowloon, across the Nan Liam garden.
      The Buddhist temple at the Chi Lin Nunnery.
       
      Nan Lian garden and Buddhist temple at the Chi Lin Nunnery.  
      View of the Japanese-style pagoda from the Buddhist temple at the Chi Lin Nunnery. 

      Follow the project: #IncidentsOfTravel #Moderations

      To complement the tour, please check the storify archive with tweets, sound recordings and more.

      Moderation(s) is a year-long programme occurring throughout 2013 between Witte de With, Rotterdam, and Spring Workshop, Hong Kong.  


      All photos: Latitudes | www.lttds.org (except when noted otherwise in the photo caption)




      Nadim Abbas' "Incidents of Travel: Hong Kong" public tour

      As part of Moderation(s), the year-long collaboration in 2013 between Witte de With, Rotterdam, and Spring Workshop, Hong Kong, curators-in-residence Latitudes have invited artist Nadim Abbas (Hong Kong, 1980) to develop a public tour of Hong Kong on Saturday, 19 January.

      The day-long itinerary plots a course through a handful of sites in the city, which have in one way or another influenced the form, content, and processes of Nadim’s practice. Since Hong Kong has been his home for most of his life, some of these places have been all too familiar to him since childhood. This project now offers him the opportunity to spring fresh surprises on unsuspecting “tourists”, and possibly on himself as well.  

      To complement the tour, check the twitter and facebook and soundcloud posts via storify, as well as the text "The Pathology of Hong Kong in the work of artist Nadim Abbas", an account of the tour by Zoe Li on ArtInfo.com (includes a slideshow).

      Follow future events on Twitter: #IncidentsOfTravel #Moderations


      Nadim Abbas introduces his tour to 16 participants in the Wah Fu Estate, Aberdeen.

      Incidents of Travel: Hong Kong
      by Nadim Abbas
      19 January 2013

      Although I usually speak about my work in terms of images and the imaginary, there is always an equally important component that describes an encounter with externalspace. By that I am referring to the heterogenous space in which we live, which we rarely have time to reflect upon except in a state of distraction. But just because there is no time to reflect doesn’t mean that these spaces don’t affect our thoughts, subtly penetrating the internal space of our imagination; in some cases to the point where one can no longer distinguish between the internal and the external, or between dream and reality. It is these moments of uncertainty that interest me the most, and which, in my own experience, transforms art making into a perpetual balancing act on the threshold between banality and oblivion.

      The itinerary outlined below plots a course through a handful of sites in Hong Kong, which have in one way or another influenced the form, content, and processes that define my practice. Since Hong Kong has been my home for most of my life, some of these places have been all too familiar to me since childhood; waiting for the right opportunity to spring fresh surprises on this unsuspecting tourist.


      Wah Kwai Estate block.


       
      Wah Kwai Estate water feature (with no water).
      Around the Wah Kwai Estate. Photo: Heman Chong.

      Waterfall Bay Park, Aberdeen, Hong Kong


      Waterside "resort" used by the local community to swim and exercise by the side of the South China Sea.

      Waterfall Bay is said to have attracted Portuguese and British ships to its shores to collect fresh water from its namesake as far back as the 16th century. Today, about 30m from the falls lie the ruins of a WW2 military pillbox and petrol powered searchlight, referred to officially as “Beach Defense Units” by Allied troops during the Japanese siege of Hong Kong in 1941. A few minutes walk from the rocky beach along the coastline, residents of a nearby public housing estate have over the years converted what looks like a disused pier into an veritable seaside resort for the local community. Despite numerous government placards warning against swimming in ungazetted waters, residents eager for an early morning dip in the South China Sea have gone so far as to add ad hoc steps, pool ladders and even fresh water facilities for an after-swim wash. 


       Tour guide of the day, artist Nadim Abbas. Photo: Trevor Young.


       Looking towards Lamma Island from Waterfall Bay Park.

      For the less adventurous, there are shelters and seating areas where the elderly gather everyday to play chess/cards, chat or simply watch the boats passing by. But perhaps the most endearing aspect of this site are the hundreds of porcelain statues of various Chinese deities clustered along the hillside and shoreline. I don’t know what started this particular outdoor collection; perhaps a makeshift shrine to protect local fisherman, or to commemorate a traumatic event? Or because it is considered unlucky to throw away statues of deities, they were quietly transferred to this idyllic setting instead. Needless to say, this latter aspect lends the whole site, already steeped in history, with a certain sacred quality. In a city like Hong Kong, where the regulation of land use usually falls into the purview of one dimensional governmental policies or market driven real estate developments, such elaborate appropriations of public space are a rarity. They represent in my mind a kind of fragile heterotopia, or an unwitting piece of relational art par excellence. 


      Offerings to deities, Waterfall Bay Park, Aberdeen.


      Hillside covered with porcelain statues of various Chinese deities. 
      and more... Photo: Nadim Abbas


      ...some with their own shelters.


      The waterfall of Waterfall Bay Park!


       Looking the other direction an abandoned WWII beach-defense unit.


      Inside the WWII beach defense unit.


       Exploring the bay.


      Nadim Abbas, Cataract (Iguazu Falls), 2011. Kinetic lightbox with Duratran print and aluminium window frames. 70(h) x 85(w) x 15(d) cm. Courtesy of the artist.

       Walking through the Wah Fu Estate in Pok Fu Lam. Photo: Heman Chong.


       Wah Fu Estate laundry.


      Photo: Trevor Yeung.

      Concrete Islands, Eastern Street, Hong Kong

      My fascination with marginal spaces in the urban landscape began with this network of concrete islands that are located beneath the Connaught Road West flyovers next to the Western Harbour Tunnel (WHT) entrance. It is a site that I regularly pass by on bus rides to Kowloon side, and it became the model for a 46sq/m sandscape that was built in a warehouse space as part of an installation titled Afternoon in Utopia(2012). 

      Underneath the Connaught Road West flyover. Photo: Heman Chong.

      Photo: Trevor Yeung.

      Nadim Abbas, Afternoon in Utopia, 2012. Mixed media installation (sand, concrete, pigment prints, painted wall text, red tinted lighting). Dimensions variable (sandscape coverage approx 46 sq/m). Courtesy of the artist.

      One of the distinguishing characteristics of this particular set of islands are the uniform grids of solid concrete trapezoidal prisms that were set into the ground either by government departments or the government-franchised company that operates the WHT. The usual explanation for this strangely monumental arrangement of blocks is to discourage the homeless population from sleeping on the islands. I see it also as a way for the authorities to mark their territory, much like a dog urinates on a lamppost. A couple of questions remain: are concrete islands private or public spaces? What are the laws and jurisdictions that regulate the use of these spaces? Much like the status of homeless people, it seems that these anomalous zones occupy a certain legal grey area, perpetually overlooked because they exist on the boundaries of function and visibility.1
       
      Photo: Heman Chong.


      Lunch break at the West Kowloon Waterfront Promenade, site of the West Kowloon Cultural District development, to host the future M+, a museum for visual culture to open in 2017 with a focus on 20th and 21st century art, design, architecture and moving image.
       Hong Kong skyline from West Kowloon Waterfront Promenade along the Victoria Harbour.

      Man Cheong Street Housing Complex, Jordan, Kowloon

      As we all know, Hong Kong is one of the most densely populated cities in the world. This is typically illustrated via descriptions of crowded streets in districts like Causeway Bay, Sham Shui Po and Mong Kok, or of the ubiquitous high-rise public housing estates around the territory. This latter aspect is indicative of the tendency, which began under colonial rule, to build upwards rather than outwards to meet the demands of a growing population. Ackbar Abbas, in Hong Kong: Culture and the Politics of Disappearance (1997) writes:

      "Hyperdensity is partly the result of limited space, but it is also the result of how this limited space could be exploited for economic gain. On the one hand, the colonial government deals with the problem of hyperdensity by constructing cheap housing estates. On the other hand, the government policy of releasing crown land bit by bit at strategic moments and its prerogative, which it duly exercises, of designating land as rural (where strict building restrictions apply) or urban, ensure that building space remains scarce and property prices remain high."


      Man Cheong Street Housing Complex, a case study in hyperdensity. 


      Photo: Trevor Yeung. 


       Stuck in traffic conversations (Left: Mimi Brown and right: Nadim Abbas). 


      Although the experience of living in a hyperdense milieu is often talked about disparagingly, it has also been argued that the close proximity between the commercial and the residential actually encourages diverse, dynamic communities and a vibrant street culture (in contrast to the the bland homogeneity of suburban sprawl). 


        
      In the early 90s, a group of Japanese architects conducted an in depth survey of the city, extolling the virtues of hyperdense living, and going so far as to liken this still existing complex of apartment blocks off Man Cheong Street (another regular sight for me on weekly cross-harbour bus rides) to the infamous (now demolished) Kowloon Walled City:

      Circulation inside the apparently solid block is not horizontal but vertical. Each slab-building is actually a grouping of towers, separated by slender slots. [...] Within these slots of space, like everywhere else in Hong Kong, however, residents have built illegal elements. Thus, although at first glance this highly ordered building complex looks nothing like the chaotic Walled City in Kowloon, it shares with it many features, such as its density of use and its vertical circulation.2

       
       Wiring, piping, washing and air-conditioning in the Man Cheong Street Housing Complex.


      My own concerns regarding the phenomenon of hyperdensity have to do with the kinds of sub-cultures, or modes of (anti)sociability that emerge as a result of extended inhabitation. This has translated into research and immersion in otakuculture, which carries with it stereotypes of socially inept male subjects walled up alone in their apartments; as if the dense accumulation of cramped interior space encourages an introversion, or vacuum of mental space itself. Interestingly, the Chinese word for otakuis宅男 (zaak naam), where is short for housing (complex) or tenement (block), and means male.


       Nadim Abbas, I Would Prefer Not To (宅男) #9, 2009. Digital C-print photograph, 64 x 42cm. Courtesy of the artist.



      Shanghai Street, Yau Ma Tei.

      The final leg of this tour takes us down a number of well-known streets in Hong Kong, which are prime examples of the kind of vibrant street culture that characterizes a hyperdense city like Hong Kong. They also provide a historical cross section of architectural styles in the region, from pre-WW1 “Verandah” type buildings to modern-day podium towers. Each street is known for its specific cluster of specialized shops and/or stalls. Tung Choi Street, for instance, is affectionately known as “Goldfish Street” since it is almost exclusively lined with pet shops and aquarium suppliers. My choice of these 3 streets in particular reflect my own interests as a consumer as much as producer. In fact it is often the case that I get ideas via shopping, or window shopping - there is always an excuse to pick up another piece of useless junk... 


        Photo: Heman Chong.
       
      Shanghai Street, Yau Ma Tei, Kowloon(Kitchen and restaurant supplies)


      Meat cleavers and tea pots around Shanghai St.


      Pots and pans galore.
      Passing by the Kowloon Wholesale Yau Ma Tei Fruit Market.

      A durian fruit in the Kowloon Wholesale Fruit Market.
       
      Tung Choi “Goldfish” Street, Prince Edward, Kowloon(Pet shops, aquarium supplies, bicycle shops)


      Goldfish of all size and variety sold at Tung Choi “Goldfish” Street.


      Aquarium supplies of all persuasions.

       Aquarium supplies to decorate fish-tanks.


      Mini red, blue and white lobsters, Tung Choi “Goldfish” Street. 


      Nadim Abbas, Marine Lover, 2011. Mixed media  (Polyresin coral casts, fluorescent black lights, plywood, door frames, mirror), 300(h) x 100(w) x 1900(d) cm. Courtesy of the artist.

      Ap Liu Street, Shum Shui Po, Kowloon(Electronic components, consumer electronics, camera accessories, hi-fi & AV equipment, hand/power tools & accessories, flea market)


      Watches, lighting fixtures, cables, transformers, telephone chargers, wires, batteries, and all kinds of other hardware supplies.


       ...as well as fishing nets

      ...all sorts of magnets. Photo: Trevor Yeung.


      ...and mountains of second-hand drills in the Ap Liu Street market.

      1 In his visual essay, On Marginal Spaces: Artefacts of the Mundane (2011), Peter Benz devotes a whole section to the discussion of concrete islands. For a fictional account, see J. G. Ballard’s Concrete Island (1974), a kind of Robinson Crusoe for the twentieth century.

      2 See architectural journal, SD (Space Design) Hong Kong: Alternative Metropolis No. 330, March 1992.

       


       
      Nadim Abbas (Hong Kong, 1980) is a Hong Kong-based installation artist. His work explores the intricate role that memory-images play in the intersection between mind and matter. This has culminated in the construction of complex set pieces, where objects exist in an ambiguous relationship with their own image, and bodies succumb to the seduction of space. 


      Abbas studied sculpture (B.A.) at the Chelsea College of Art and Comparative Literature (M.Phil.) at the University of Hong Kong. He currently holds teaching posts at the Hong Kong Art School and City University of Hong Kong. Notable exhibitions and projects include: “No Longer Human”, Osage Kwun Tong, Hong Kong (2012); “Marine Lover”, ARTHK11, Hong Kong (2011); “Cataract”, EXPERIMENTA & Gallery Exit, Hong Kong, “FAX” Para/Site, Hong Kong (both 2010); and “Louis Vuitton: A Passion for Creation – The Hong Kong Seven”, Hong Kong Museum of Art, Hong Kong (2009).  

      Related contents:
      Soundscapes of "Incidents of Travel";
      Storify "Incidents of Travel";
      Flickr album of the four tours of "Incidents of Travel";
      'Incidents of travel' tour with Yuk King Tan on 24 January 2013;
      'Incidents of Travel' tour with Ho Sin Tung on 29 January 2013;
      'Incidents of Travel' tour with Samson Young on 7 February 2013.



      All photos: Latitudes | www.lttds.org (Except noted otherwise in the photo caption)

      Creative Commons Licence
      This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.




      First week of the "Moderation(s)" residency at Spring Workshop, Hong Kong

      View of Hong Kong from Victoria Peak.

      Wall text at Spring Workshop introducing Latitudes' month residency.

      Moderation(s) team. Left to right: Athena Wu and Mimi Brown (Spring Workshop), Samuel Saelemakers and Defne Ayas (Witte de With, Rotterdam), artist and 'Moderation(s)' curator Heman Chong and Mariana Cánepa Luna and Max Andrews (Latitudes). Photo: Spring Workshop.

       Lunch break at Spring Workshop.

      As part of Latitudes' 'Moderation(s)' research residency in Hong Kong we will be looking into how the city is articulated through specialist tours and attractions – such as self-made or esoteric museums, museum-like retail spaces, or “marginal” sculptural displays – both phenomena at the edge of the cultural, tourism and leisure sectors. Our first visit took us to the Hobby and Toy Museum in Yau Ma Tei, Kowloon (below).

        Hobby and Toy Museum entrance in Yau Ma Tei, Kowloon.

        Hobby and Toy Museum galleries at Yau Ma Tei, Kowloon.

       Dinner at Lin Heung Tea House in Wan Chai.

       Divinities shop around Shanghai Road in Yau Ma Tei, Kowloon.


      'The Palazzo' residential complex in Fo Tan.


       View from Leung Chi Wo and Sara Wong's studio in the Wah Luen Industrial Centre.


      MTR station Fo Tan.
       
      French toast breakfast at Leung Chi Wo and Sara Wong's studio in Fo Tan.
        
      Working table of Ho Sin Tung's studio at the Worldwide Industrial Centre in Fo Tan.
       
      Detail of Ho Sin Tung's studio at the Worldwide Industrial Centre in Fo Tan.


      Detail of Ho Sin Tung's studio at the Worldwide Industrial Centre in Fo Tan.

      Studying the map of Fotanian Open Studios 2013.

       
      Fo Tan apartments looming over the forested hills.
       
      Fo Tan industrial area.


      On 15 January we made day to the New Territories to explore birds and biodiversity. Here's the bird list from the day: 

      Eurasian Wigeon, Mallard, Northern Shoveler, Northern Pintail, Eurasian Teal, Tufted Duck, Little Grebe, Great Crested Grebe, Oriental Stork, Black-faced Spoonbill, Yellow Bittern, Black-crowned Night Heron, Chinese Pond Heron, Grey Heron, Purple Heron, Great Egret, Intermediate Egret, Little Egret, Great Cormorant, Western Osprey, Black Kite, Eastern Marsh Harrier, Crested Goshawk, Eastern Buzzard, Eastern Imperial Eagle, Peregrine Falcon, White-breasted Waterhen, Common Moorhen, Eurasian Coot, Black-winged Stilt, Pied Avocet, Grey-headed Lapwing, Pacific Golden Plover, Grey Plover, Little Ringed Plover, Kentish Plover, Lesser Sand Plover, Greater Sand Plover, Greater Painted-Snipe, Pintail/Swinhoe's Snipe, Common Snipe, Black-tailed Godwit, Whimbrel, Eurasian Curlew, Spotted Redshank, Common Redshank, Marsh Sandpiper, Common Greenshank, Green Sandpiper, Wood Sandpiper, Terek Sandpiper, Common Sandpiper, Great Knot, Red-necked Stint, Temminck's Stint, Dunlin, Black-headed Gull, Saunders's Gull, Black-tailed Gull, "kamtschatschensis" Mew Gull, Caspian Gull, Heuglin's Gull, Caspian Tern, Domestic Pigeon, Spotted Dove, Asian Koel, Plaintive Cuckoo, House Swift, White-throated Kingfisher, Black-capped Kingfisher, Common Kingfisher, Pied Kingfisher, Grey-chinned Minivet, Scarlet Minivet, Long-tailed Shrike, Ashy Drongo, Azure-winged Magpie, Eurasian Magpie, Collared Crow, Large-billed Crow, Grey-headed Canary-Flycatcher, Cinereous Tit, Yellow-cheeked Tit, Red-whiskered Bulbul, Chinese Bulbul, Chestnut Bulbul, Red-rumped Swallow, Asian Stubtail, Dusky Warbler, Pallas's Leaf Warbler, Yellow-browed Warbler, Yellow-bellied Prinia, Plain Prinia, Common Tailorbird, Rufous-capped Babbler, Masked Laughingthrush, Silver-eared Leiothrix, Japanese White-eye, Velvet-fronted Nuthatch, Crested Myna, Red-billed Starling, Black-collared Starling, Blue Whistling Thrush, Grey-backed Thrush, Common Blackbird, Pale Thrush, Red-flanked Bluetail, Oriental Magpie Robin, Daurian Redstart, Stejneger's Stonechat, Red-throated Flycatcher, Orange-bellied Leafbird, Fork-tailed Sunbird, Eurasian Tree Sparrow, Scaly-breasted Munia, "taivana" Eastern Yellow Wagtail, "macronyx" Eastern Yellow Wagtail, Grey Wagtail, White Wagtail, Richard's Pipit, Olive-backed Pipit, Crested Bunting, Chestnut-eared Bunting, Black-faced Bunting.

      Kam Tin river, looking for Grey-headed Lapwings.
       
      Entrance to the Mai Po Nature Reserve.


      Mai Po Marshes, the scrape.
       
      Gate 107 through border fence towards the mangroves and Deep Bay, Mai Po Marshes.


       Deep Bay (mudflat).
       
       Fiddler crabs and mudskipper, Deep Bay, Mai Po Marshes.


       Chinese Pond Heron and Great Egret, Deep Bay, Mai Po Marshes.